Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Jackson Hole, Wyoming Part Two

One of the things about traveling is seeing things that you don't normally see in your own backyard. Where we live, we have 200+ acres of forever wild behind us. On any given day we can see deer, turkey, raccoons, fox, and an occasional misguided black bear.
The boys are use to animals in the wild and have been brought up to respect the animals' natural habitats.
That being said, it sure was cool seeing a mama moose and her calf.
And the elk roaming on the Wyoming plain were spectacular.
And when this Pronghorn deer popped out we were quite impressed!
But, the crowds and the traffic jams to see some of these animals saddened me. I felt, at times , that I was on a Disney World ride and that all the animals would be led back to the barn at dusk. People were careless, walking up close to the mama bison who were nursing their calves. Ah, people...mamas of any species get angry when they come near their young! Stand back!
Traffic jams ensued when a bull moose was grazing to close to a road. Rangers were forced into directing traffic, a job, I'm sure they did not like.
Right before we arrived in Wyoming, there was a terrible grizzly bear accident in Yellowstone. A man was attacked because the mama bear was protecting her cubs. Usually, in incidents like this the bear is found and destroyed. This one was not. The man was trying to get closer to take a picture. People, please leave that to the men and women who sit in the wild, at a safe distance, with their HUGE lenses and wait for the animals. It's not worth your life and the animals would appreciate the respect.
This elk was just hanging in the middle of the Old Faithful complex in Yellowstone. I couldn't believe that he wanted to be near all the people. Millions of acres and he was in an area about the size of a small living room. People were going nuts, pushing and shoving to get a good picture (not me though...I waited patiently). I think this lady actually enjoyed the people.

We were fortunate to come home just after dusk one evening and as we were driving up the hill to our rental house we were treated to several owls perched in different spots on the hill. Huge owls that had just begun their hunting for the evening. No pictures were taken, but the coolness factor of this sight will remain in my mind forever.
And you know what, I think, at times, that's the best way it should be.


Jill said...

Jane, all of your pictures have really inspired me to book a trip for next year. My cousin's husband is a fly fishing guide on the Yellowstone River. We would have gone this year, but they just had a baby in May - probably not looking for our tribe to descend! We were there very briefly for their wedding a few years ago in early April and Yellowstone was deserted. It was so beautiful, and for this NYer, a little unnerving! I feared we'd stumble on a bear (which we did actually, but from the car) and no one would see us get charged.

Thanks for sharing. I'll probably be emailing you in the coming months for suggestions on places to stay.

Liz said...

Your photos are lovely, Jane!

You've pretty much summed up why I haven't been in a hurry to go to Yellowstone. I know I would love the majesty of the open spaces, but it's the hordes of tourists that I'd want to stay far away from. Most modern people don't seem to understand or respect the power of nature.

MadMad said...

Great pics, Jane! I'm sure this will be a trip your family remembers forever! Very cool.

Anonymous said...

Hi Jane
I've been reading for a little while (came from Simple Lovely) and love your photos & especially the ones from Jackson Hole/Yellowstone. We were just in Yellowstone towards the end of June -- and were pleasantly surprised by how few tourists there were at that time due to the late spring. what a wonderful & awe inspiring place. We had a terrific family vacation there & it sounds like you did too!

Minnetonka MN

Linda said...

Just delightful. I feel like I've been there, myself. Thanks for sharing your storis and photos; they are wonderful. When I saw the first photo of the boys with you, I thought son #1 looked like his momma and guessed that son #2 must look like his dad. Then I saw the photo of the boys with their father and said, yep, #2 is his daddy's boy! :-)

Out of curiosity, is that an insect on your camera lens in the photo of the elk at Old Faithful? Pretty cool effect.

Rachel said...

I was wondering if you were going to post your elk pictures...and finally I had a free moment to come and check. You got some great shots!

YNP/Tetons is a beautiful area but it is sickening to me to see the people and how little they respect the wildlife. Alas, most parks are like this now. I understand that travel with teenagers is hard (oh, how I remember when I was one of those and made my parents life miserable on trips) but try to head out in the back-country if you ever get back to the MT/WY area. You'll still see the animals but won't have to fight traffic jams for it.

I didn't hear about the grizzy bear incident...off to google that one...