We had an amazing 10 days watching the Bears of Grand Teton National Park. Our original plan for going to Jackson was to install the bar that Al made, spend a day or two, and go back to Utah. But, the bears were out, the park was not crowded, and the weather was amazing. So of course we stayed longer, then longer again, and oh hey, just one more day.
The grizzly 399, and her cubs from last year were the first bears we saw. I was glad to see the cubs looking healthy, and bigger than last year.
399 is an amazing 22 years old, has raised numerous cubs, and is a great mama bear.
90 Percent of National Park Visitors Never Leave the Road
I read one time that 90 Percent of National Park Visitors Never Leave the Road, some even estimate 95% of visitors don’t venture more than 100 feet off the pavement. An article I read just yesterday that talked about the crowds, and the problems they create in Yellowstone, said that 95% of the people, use 5% of the park.
This is pretty sad. Sure, most parks have roads that take you from one part of the park to another, and generally there is beautiful scenery along these roads. But to not get off the beaten path, walk were the animals do, and soak up the beauty, seems like such a waste. Obviously there are people who are physically unable to do more than see what they can from the roads, and thankfully they can experience the parks in this way. But there are a lot of people who simply choose not to explore.
Two mornings this week we got up super early, drove to were we had seen the elk before, and just started walking through the woods. No trail, no path, no set point we were trying to get to. Just followed the sound of elk bugling.
We were rewarded with this enormous 6 x 8 bull and his harem of cows.
Every morning I get up early, get dressed in the dark, take care of the dogs, and head out the door. If we had another camera Al would probably be coming with me, but we don’t…yet…so he stays home and snuggles with the dogs. I head to the river and start walking, looking for moose. Sometimes I have photographer friends that are in the area too, but lately I have been out on my own. This is fine actually, as I love the serenity of the early morning and the sound of the river.
Friday morning was wet, really wet. I have tall rubber boots that keep my feet dry, but from the knee up I get pretty soaked. The bushes are tall, and it’s unavoidable. This morning I had been walking for about a mile when I looked across the river and spotted a nice bull moose. He was headed down river, were I had just come from, and I paralleled him from my side of the river.
It looked like Washakie, and I assumed that was who I was trailing.