I am disappointed that I have not gotten any close ups of Grizzlies this summer like I was so fortunate to last year in the Tetons. But black bears – although intrinsically less interesting, and decidedly more difficult to photograph because of their solid color – are ubiquitous.
Meet some of my new friends
There actually IS a black bear out there in the middle of the sagebrush, but my Nikon started flirting with this other Nikon and shifted focus without my permission.
Sorry about that!
After an initial flurry of posts from here in Yellowstone my output has tapered off a bit. That’s because I have suddenly become an avid member of a group I once snubbed: the Wolf Watchers.
Whenever I saw lupophiles peering off into the distance through expensive scopes I knew better than to stop and waste my time. Wolves are rarely closer than half a mile and even the big-boy 600mm lenses have trouble at that distance. And what good, if you’re into photography, is an encounter without an award-winning image?
But, man, was I wrong on both counts! When you get to know the members of the packs on a first-name basis; when you watch them swarm & feed on a carcass; when they defend their bounty from other wolves, even chasing and killing one rival (Mollie’s Pack Wolf #822) in the process; when they try to defend their bison carcass from grizzlies, unsuccessfully; when two members of rival packs, instead of killing each other, flirt like Romeo & Juliet – I mean, like, this wolf-watching business is addictive!
And I was wrong about the photographs. Yes, wolves too often keep their distance. But when they don’t, the image can be stunning. I am working on a wolf video blog, but until then, here is a sample image I was fortunate to be close enough to capture.