Our trip through Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks earlier this year provided us with some of the best wildlife viewing of any of the US and Canadian national parks we have visited so far. When we decided to make the trip over the border specifically to visit these national icons, Yellowstone being the first national park established in the US in 1872 and Grand Teton the equally beautiful sidekick, we had endless (overly excited) discussions about the different types of animals we hoped to see during our visit. Needless to say bears and moose were on our long list of wildlife to tick off. Neither of us actually believed we would be lucky enough to spot either of these animals despite the ‘rumours’ of plentiful bear encounters in Yellowstone. We had heard the stories, that bears are everywhere throughout Yellowstone’s valley’s, that they would even sit on the side of the road presenting themselves specifically for tourists such as ourselves. Still, there was doubt in our minds. We have been in bear and moose country before, sat and waited in the ideal places at the ideal times of day, and still no bears and no moose. We had begun to think that bears and moose – moose in particular seeing as though we have previously seen bears outside of the wild – were a myth. Although we secretly hoped these stories of bear littered roads and moose springing out of the bushes to say hello were true, in reality neither of us honestly believed we would see either animal. Well, we were wrong. Not only did we see both bears (both black and grizzly) and moose, we were lucky enough to see a whole bunch of other animals as well: Bison, deer, fox, coyote, beaver, wolves (heard them, does that count?), bighorn sheep, elk, eagles, marmot, squirrels, chipmunks, and more. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to photograph all of the wildlife we spotted but I did manage to capture a few.
The number of wildlife photographers in the parks was astounding, Yellowstone in particular. Needless to say when I pulled out my baby 300mm lens next to their massive 500mm + lenses I felt a little inadequate… :) A reminder that I am more focused on landscape photography at the moment than I am on wildlife photography made me feel a bit better It did not, however, stop me from impulsively hiding my equipment whenever any of them strutted past with their big lenses though…. I did eventually gain solace in the fact that those lenses looked ridiculously heavy and come morning, I’d say they were a little tender after hiking around with such a monstrous beast mounted on their shoulders all day. I’m Joking, I would never think that. Ok, just a little :).
So, here just a few of the images I have processed so far. I have included both landscape and some wildlife images. As you can imagine there are thousands of photographs to sort through; consider this the first instalment.