While it isn’t wise to run in bear country, that is exactly what it feels like we’ve been doing. Running from one wildlife jam to another. In just this past week, we and our Sunday-thru-Wednesday colleagues on the brigade ran *52 jams in just the four days* of our shift. That’s just the ones weContinue reading ““Dispatch, I’ve got bears coming out of the woodwork.””
From the emergence in early March of male grizzly bears, through the elk and moose rut of the fall, until the last bear heads for their den in December, the animals of the park keep the Wildlife Brigade working seven days a week, from dawn until dark. Jams of All Sizes We may find ourselvesContinue reading “Wildlife Brigade Part II – Animal Jams and Dispatch Calls”
True or False: Park Rangers Always Know Where Every Animal Is In The Park. False! True or False: All of the animals in the park “are chipped.” False again. True or False: Wildlife Management does not always mean just the four-legged kind. Absolutely true! According to many visitors that we meet on the side ofContinue reading “True or False: Park Rangers Always Know Where Every Animal Is In The Park”
For many of us, working on our personal holiday (aka birthday) is not a thing to be celebrated. However, yesterday I explored two park wildlife jobs that made for an eye-opening and memorable day. It began with the alarm going off at 5am …
The Day We Earned Our Adult Beverages!! This morning we arrived for duty Sunday at String Lake at 8am. The smoke had drifted out of the valley, so the mountains were looking more perky and inviting than they had in a few days. Already, the first two parking lots were full! With the forecast forContinue reading “This Is Not A Drill!”
Summer is emphatically here in the Tetons, breaking both average high temperatures and visitor attendance records.
Thunderstorms are expected this afternoon so Dave is off quickly to get his daily hike in. This time he starts in Lupine Meadows. An innocuous sounding name that means straight up! I remember it well and I remember being quite mad about the false advertising years go when I got talked into the hike. From there Dave continued on to Garnet Canyon until the snow was too deep on a scree field to safely traverse and turned around. The 7.5 mile hike ascended 1800 feet of elevation. Along the way he met a very curious marmot that came to his feet until Dave reached for the camera, then he’d scamper away, but come back to his feet as soon as the camera was put away. Not so camera shy was the black bear (colored brown) Dave and a pair of hikers saw on the trail. “She was just being a bear,” Dave said.
Out the window Fred and Rickie have brought their cousins — there is a small herd (100 adults and calves) in the sage brush north of the barns and the flower meadow. Most of them are laying down, so look to be enjoying themselves. The male bluebird is on sentinel duty, perched on the top of the nest box outside the window or observing from the slightly higher vantage point of the nearby snow marker as it sways in the rising wind.
Let’s go to Lamar. We’ll ride through Hayden Valley and see what we see. Along the way, we pick up ready made sandwiches from the vendor in the Canyon area, scope out where the campground is located and resume the trip. The last time we had been in this area was December 2014 — it was novel to see it without five feet of snow. And with people.