May 20, 2014

We drove to Sedge Bay where we saw yellow-bellied marmots…mating!  Spring is in the air.  We drove over to LeHardy’s Rapids and saw a large grizzly in the snow on the bank of the Yellowstone River.  He was heading away from us into the woods so we enjoyed the moment and headed over to Alum Creek. Looking west we saw a grizzly that was very far away.  As we were trying our best to get a long distance photo, another photographer showed up and suggested that we take a  look at the grizzly down on the creek!  It’s funny that we did not see what was much closer us because we were so focused on what we saw in the distance, which really was an unattainable photo.  It reminded me of the Helen Keller quote, “When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us.”  The close grizzly even had a reflection in the creek!  Then we noticed a grizzly sow and two large cubs (perhaps 2-years old) farther away.  Dale had told us that grizzly cubs stay a year longer with their moms than black bears because they have so much to learn about being a predator.  (black bears stay 2 years; grizzlies stay 3 years)  Then we spotted another larger grizzly not too far from them, but still too far for us to get a photo.  We could also see two coyotes on a snow field, in the distance.  We’re glad we have good binoculars.  Above us, we saw a young bald eagle fly and we tried for a photo of it.  It was interesting how many critters we were seeing in the large valley around Alum Creek.  We decided to go check out Floating Island Lake where we saw a coyote, a couple of sandhill cranes, and some ruddy ducks, which were in full breeding color with their blue bills. Some women told us that the coyote had killed a marmot and was looking for another underneath the log it was standing by.  We headed up the hill and saw a black bear in the clutter of felled trees at Elk Creek, but decided to head on to Rosie’s Meadow see if White Patch or the three cubs were there.  No luck, so we turned around and headed back.  We noticed that the black bear from Elk Creek had moved down to the meadow and decided to go back to Floating Island Lake and to take more photos of ruddy ducks and coots and then we headed over to Blacktail Deer Plateau where we saw another black bear lying on a carcass to guard it.  We decided to head over to Rainy Lake.  Great luck!  White Patch and the three cubs were there.  The cubs are about the size of a football, and so incredibly cute!  We stayed from 3:30-8:00 PM taking photos.  They played and rough-housed while mama foraged.  I had no idea that cubs were so rambunctious.  The adult bears seem to always be grazing or digging up roots.  I got a chance to talk to my new friend, Sherri, while taking photos.  We discussed my camera issues (ergonomics and blurry photos).  She was really helpful and had some tips for me.  She said she there was a store in Bozeman that is really helpful, and we might want to go talk with them.  After Mark and discussed it, we decided to go to Bozeman tomorrow.  ~ Mary & Mark

Places we have seen Bears and more

Siting List:  6 grizzly, 5 black bear

Click on a photo for easier viewing



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We love adventure and creating new memories. We travel, not to escape life, but for life not to escape us. We are loving this journey called, "life." We're living our lives fully, with gratitude in our hearts. There are kind people all over this world and we have discovered that we are more similar than we are different. The smile is the same in all languages. I love the following quote by Mark Twain: "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So, throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."

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