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Another Yellowstone Report


vishal
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We had to scrap our plans to visit Africa for wildlife this year, but instead we went to Yellowstone and Tetons for wildlife. Here is a long report of our sightings.

My father and I recently spent spent 6 nights in Yellowstone and 2 nights in Tetons ( June 15-22). Here is the wildlife we saw.I just want to let you guys know, we are not really scopers, which is why we really didn't spend much time looking for grizzlies or wolves, just because they are always distant.

31 bears, 24 black 7 griz. Most of the black bear action was up from Petrified Tree To Floating Island Lake and on Dunraven right before Antelope Creek. Had pretty bad luck with COY, only two sightings, both poor for photography. One of them was Rosie at Rainy Lake and one of them was another sow with two cubs on Dunraven right before Antelope Creek. One peculiar thing we encountered was two adult bears in Petrified Tree hanging out right next to each other. I am surprised they tolerated each other at such close distance to each other. We had a few close encounters with black bears, but most were distant. One time though, at around 5:30, we witnessed a black bear being chased of by a bull bison cause he was getting to close to him. Also, while watching the two bears at Petrified Tree, we suddenly saw one of them bolt! He was going after a deer, but he didn't really put much effort in to it. The chase ended in like 5 seconds. He seemed like a cocky young bear. Had one encounter with a cinnamon yearling in the Picnic Area. He was very playful and active. Also had an encounter with the Phantom Lake Sow and her yearling.

Grizzlies were kind of a disappointment. We only saw seven, 4 in Hayden and 3 Lamar, all to far away for photos with 800mm equivalent. We did have one nice encounter visible with the naked eye. We watched a playful young grizzly run around to let off some steam in Hayden. But suddenly he turned serious. He had seen an elk with a calf and was trying to get it. But the elk kept on chasing him off. It was a great encounter.

Lots of Foxes! What we missed in bears we made up in foxes. We had three great encounters with a fox in Hayden Valley. He was active in the same area for a couple of mornings and evenings. Our best sighting happened when the fox started strolling by the side of the river, hunted for voles, and crossed right in front of us. We also had a spectacular encounters with the foxes at the Craig Thomas Visitor Center. We saw the kits playing but they were to deep in the brush for photos. Whenever they stuck their head out, we took photos.

Wolves: 2 sightings We spent little time looking for wolves, as we were informed it was almost always through scopes. Whenever we were in the area where they were sighted, we took a look, but that is about it. Our two sightings were of the Wapiti alphas and their 4 pups and one pup at the Junction Den Site.

Trumpeter Swan: Had two encounters with these graceful birds. One time we saw two at Swan Lake Flats and 3 at Alum Creek at quite close proximity.

Moose: Saw four moose. First sighting was extremely unexpected. While driving in the Petrfied area at around 6:15 in the morning we saw a moose and her calf sprint across the road and up in to the trees near the end of the Blacktail Drive. They were definitely spooked by something as they were sprinting! Also had a good encounter with a moose and her calf in the Tetons. We watched the calf breast feed.

 

Side note: Right past Roosevelt Lodge on the way to Petrified Tree, we saw a pine marten cross the road with dinner in its mouth! To quick for photos though!

Personal Thoughts: Overall it was a great trip. A least from this trip I think Hayden is WAY better than Lamar. In Lamar we saw grizzlies so far they looked like dots through scopes. We literally did not snap a single photo in Lamar. In Hayden we had close encounters with foxes and swans. Hayden is also much more scenic and in the morning it is blanketed with a beautiful layer of fog.

Some shots

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Edited by vishal
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Supero super images..

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After asia and africa north america is the next most beautiful safari destination.

But do they allow horse back safari ,walking safari ,native american interaction and cultural safari...just like we have in africa.??

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Thank you for the comment about my photos. We really wanted to go to Africa and had everything booked, but just could not due to time constraints and expensive flights. In Yellowstone you are allowed to walk at will in designated trails. I think they have horseback rides too. Not sure about the other things, though I do not think so

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@@vishal great start to your TR - I like the photos of the bear in the purple flowers, the moose and bady and the trumpeter swans in flight.

 

Looking forward to more when you have time.

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That is my entire TR @@Treepol. I do not really remember on what days we saw what, so I cannot do a day by day report. Thank you for your kind comment about my photos!

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Beautiful photos! I am envious of your mama and baby moose sighting but they are all great! @@vishal

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@@vishal, great shots. Glad you had a good time in YNP and the Tetons. It's interesting that we have never had good luck in Hayden but you sure did. I am envious of your great fox encounters :) .

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@@vishal, just beautiful. The Blackbear sitting amongst the Lupin is a classic, and further on a beautiful portrait too.Hope the "close encounters" weren't too close. I'm with you on Hayden vs Lamar, great photo of the valley and river, brings back memories of chilly mornings out crawling along the road, hoping for that magic sighting.

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Thank you for your replies @@elefromoz @@Atdahl @@SafariChick. @@Atdahl, the foxes were total chance encounters, were lucky to be at the right place at the right time. Most of our sightings of the fox sightings we enjoyed all to ourselves.

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amazing shots! did you feel the park was over crowded and people were way too clos to wildlife near the road??..or were a lot of these photos taken on hikes. Just curious.

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@@Brian's Art for Animals These were pretty much all taken from the road, like from pullouts or right outside cars. Lots of times there were huge crowds at bear sightings, and often times we witnessed people preventing bears from crossing roads and stuff when there were no rangers. We also saw some stupid people getting dangerously close to bears. But of all the sightings we had (more than two dozen bear sightings) we only witnessed unruly behavior twice. I did not really feel the park was overcrowded though.

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  • 2 weeks later...

thanks for your comment. maybe I will try going in the spring then, since I went only once (in sept) and we could only see bears/wolves via the telescopes

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@@vishal Lovely images and somewhere I would like to get to someday. Thanks.

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