Yellowstone - Lamar Valley
We returned to Yellowstone this time with a little more of a plan that previously - we did some research the evening before whilst having some home-made soup in the cabin, and at this morning at 05:30 hopped out of bed - and we were rolling by 0600. When it was -2C.
Before I recant some of the sites we saw, I think it is fitting to say a big thank you to the many people we met today - who were without exception as charming and hospitable as you could imagine.
The people who like us were trying to see wildlife, holidaymakers, people who wanted to look at some photos we had taken - or who thought my accent was "not from around here".
Drive Up to Thumb
The drive was dark, misty, cold, icy and frankly the only I kept seeing were Elk standing by the side of the road. As we were on a mission - I was trying to have a no stop policy - else the trip would take even longer - but some rules are meant to be broken.
A truely impressive animal. On the other side of the road from the Elk - the increasing temperature (-2c to -1c) was creating a 'smoke on the water' effect.
Be Bear aware !!
With sun starting to warm the mountains the fog was lifting, as we entered an area where we had hope to find Bear. Of course everyone want to see Bear (just as when I went to africa I wanted to see the Big-5).
We threaded our way around a mountain pass - and noticed a few stopped cars (always a give away)
Looking around I could not see what the fuss was about - the quite narrow road had a 10 feet rise to a gentle forested area... where I could see a large black blob moving. This turned out to be a Black Bear.
As if to say "Good Morning" on the peak across the valley the mist finally lifted.
Antelope & Goats
Oman and the USA have more in common than they think - they both have Antelope and Goats !!
Yellowstone is absolutly brimming with Bison, but after yesterday I shall spare you countess images. Except this Bison - who looked like a 1300lb stuffed toy.
We ate by a small stream, and were amused as people fled due to (of course) a Bison walking past.
Dora the Bear Spotting Explorer was feeling happy with the bears as well as being cold.
We then spotted some raptors in the trees.
I think it is a Rough-legged Hawk - but open to better suggestions.
As we returned home, we paused close to the site where we had previously seen the Black Bear in the morning.
Amazingly the bear was close by - and we spotted him, but not in such a good location for photos.
Dora was now very happy...
As we exited Grand Teton park, I spied something that was elk coloured but not elk size...
After meeting a really nice wildlife pro-photographer who was also looking for this animal - we saw the following.
The first image is what you may see...
If you do ... proceed carefully.
This was a Grizzly Bear !!
It had been radio-collared and tagged.
There are lots more images in the gallery.