September 28, 2013 Grand Teton National Park

Teton elk
Teton elk

Snow flurries, sleet, and dark, threatening skies kept me at home this morning. Finally the weather lifted enough to go out around 4.

Aspens and dark skies
Aspens and dark skies
Aspens
Aspens

 

 

 

 

The one nice thing about the continual dark skies this week is that every now and then, when there is a distant break in the clouds and a little sunlight actually gets through, it can make for some dramatic shots.

Took the park road up to Colter again with a side trip up to the top of Signal Mountain, quite a view!

Mule deer
Mule deer

 

A mule deer buck sporting a pretty nice set of antlers.

 

 

 

Teton bull moose
Teton bull moose
Teton bull moose
Teton bull moose

 

 

 

 

 

 

I got these almost humorous shots of a bull moose having a bad hair day, or maybe he was bringing this stuff home to learn basket weaving, I don’t know, but he made no attempt to shake the grasses off in the half hour I spent with him.

Laughing moose
Laughing moose

In this image, he almost seems to be laughing at himself.

Just before leaving the park, a little north of the Visitor’s center, a lone bull elk came flying out of the woods and came towards the road looking for a safe place to cross. I managed to get a few shots of him silhouetted against the evening sky, but unfortunately, he just wouldn’t run all the way up the bank and pose in profile.

Teton elk
Teton elk
Teton elk
Teton elk

 

 

 

 

 

 

Grazing moose
Grazing moose

 

 

 

 

September 23, 2013 Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone fall color
Yellowstone fall color

Another trip to Hayden Valley

Headed out early this morning to do the same trip around the upper loop road and down to Hayden valley but in the reverse order of Saturday’s trip. Today was one of those days where I cover a lot of ground, at the proper time of day, but just pretty much come up empty. I may have set some kind of reverse record for wildlife sightings in Hayden Valley. I traversed the entire valley north to south and then again south to north and saw but one lone bison in the distance, no elk, antelope, bison herds, wolves, bears, or coyotes. If you have ever been to the Hayden Valley, you know how rare it is to have it virtually empty of wildlife.

Yellowstone swans
Yellowstone swans
Yellowstone swans and Canada geese
Yellowstone swans and Canada geese

 

 

 

 

 

I did manage to find these swans to photograph. I was excited to see some Canada Geese floating downstream towards the swans, for I seem to recall that the swans are extremely territorial, and will drive off other birds such as the geese. I was ready for some action! But these guys seemed like they were the best of friends.

Roadside black bear cub
Roadside black bear cub

I was rounding a sharp corner and saw this young black bear cub all but in the road grazing on the curbside clover. With no mother in sight and other people stopping and getting within 6 feet of the youngster, for once, I was almost hoping a ranger would come along and break this up before the cub was startled out into the road and struck by a car. At times, his head was only a foot or so from the pavement and he acted as if he didn’t even see or hear the cars only a couple of feet from his head whizzing by, and he was completely oblivious to the growing crowd of people all but reaching out to pet him. I hope he survived this, but with no mother and this lack of fear of traffic and people, it probably doesn’t look like much of a future for this guy.

Bison on the centerline of road
Bison on the centerline

Lastly, a couple more bison shots. I got a kick out of this guy, once again using the centerline of the highway to negotiate his way down the road. They do move at a very slow pace while traveling on the highway, but they can seriously unnerve you as they pass by at only a couple of feet from your vehicle.

Bison
Sharing the road

Especially if you are on a very narrow gravel road, such as the one to the fire tower, and you encounter a fellow like this coming down the road as you head up. At least he was using the shoulder of the road, I assume because there was no yellow centerline on the gravel road.

Yellowstone Bison
Yellowstone Bison

September 21, 2013 Yellowstone National Park

View from Mammoth looking south
View from Mammoth looking south

Once again, I traversed the upper loop road from Mammoth to Tower, out to the Lamar Valley, and then on to Hayden Valley, then back to Norris, then home to Mammoth Campground.

Bison Jam
Bison Jam
Bison Jam
Bison Jam

 

 

 

 

I encountered a couple of bison jams along the way and a few scattered elk. Though unable to get any photos of him because of the distance, I was able to observe the grizzly that has been camped out on a carcass on the far shore of Swan Lake for the past three days.

Mammoth Bull Elk
Mammoth Bull Elk
Mammoth Bull Elk
Mammoth Bull Elk
Mammoth Bull Elk
Mammoth Bull Elk

 

 

 

 

 

 

I got a few nice predawn shots of the bull elk in town, controlling his ever growing harem of cows, going out over the hills to drive a stray back to the harem if she wandered too far to graze.

 

Campground elk
Campground elk
Campground elk
Campground elk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In the late afternoon, while I was at the computer processing today’s shots, I heard a bull bugling just outside the campground and it sounded like he was heading my way. Sure enough, I looked out the windshield and there he was cutting through the site directly in front of me and heading for the main road. I gathered up my camera and shot out the door after him and managed to get a couple of decent shots of him before he disappeared over the hill, apparently looking for some company.

Bison eyeing bus
To ram or not to ram
Bison walking road
Traveling the centerline
Mammoth Hot Springs
Mammoth Hot Springs

 

 

 

 

 

Yellowstone bison
Yellowstone bison
Mammoth Bull Elk
Mammoth Bull Elk
Mammoth Bull Elk
Mammoth Bull Elk

 

 

 

 

 

Mountain bluebird
Mountain bluebird
Cottonwoods Lamar Valley
Cottonwoods Lamar Valley

 

 

July 21, 2013 Lift Off! Liberation Day

Today I officially became homeless and unemployed.

After 5 years of attempting to sell my home and business, today I am freed of all encumbrances, no more physical ties to the Upper Valley region of New Hampshire, my home for the past 34 years.

Today, as I head west on I-89, out of my adopted home state, my long anticipated next (final?) adventure begins. After 20 years of owning and running a business and 30 plus years of rehabbing and maintaining a 5700 square foot, 200 year old house, it seems almost hard to believe that my only responsibilities now are my two canine companions and the only daily chores will be to keep my 2004 Allegro motorhome and my “toad”, a 2012 Prius, running smoothly. Oh, and I guess I will also have to make an attempt to figure out how to keep a blog going and perhaps even make it interesting.

Image of the Red Roof Gallery in Enfield, NH
Welcome to the Red Roof Gallery in Enfield, NH

Since 1993 I have owned and operated the Red Roof Frame Shop and Gallery in Enfield, NH, with another shop in West Lebanon, NH. With the sale of the Enfield property, the Red Roof Gallery in Enfield is no more ( the West Lebanon Red Roof Frame Shop will continue on under the new owner, Lisa Tibbits, who, incidentally, has been running the shop on her own for the past seven years ) and, while I suppose I should feel some kind of remorse, I must admit that it is more like relief, not regret.

Front yard perennial beds at the Enfield Red Roof Gallery
Front yard perennial beds at the Enfield Red Roof Gallery

 

 

Beautiful, yes, but, to me, all I can think is, no more weeding, transplanting, watering, mulching, autumn cut down and cleanup, never again! Free at last!

 

 

View of the carriage barn that houses the workshop end of the Red Roof Frame Shop in Enfield
View of the carriage barn that houses the workshop end of the Red Roof Frame Shop in Enfield

 

Also, no more scrapping and painting, no more lawns to mow, and never again will I have to shovel and snowblow that awful white stuff.

Opening reception for "The Flower Show" at the Red Roof Gallery
Opening reception for “The Flower Show” at the Red Roof Gallery
Opening reception for "All in the Family" at the Red Roof Gallery
Opening reception for “All in the Family” at the Red Roof Gallery

 

No more art shows to hang and take down, no more Opening Night Receptions (I will miss the excitement, the people, the conversations), no more 4 AM til 10 PM work days, no more vendor delivery mess-ups.

 

 

Also, most importantly, no more (censored) government paperwork and interference. I never realized, until starting a business and hiring employees, just how much productive time our wonderful government agencies, federal, state, and local, can manage to steal from a small businessperson.

So, with that little rant off my shoulders, off I go. My intent here is to provide viewers with some interesting photos of places I visit, people I meet, and wildlife I run into. I am a semi accomplished photographer and I do tend to concentrate on wildlife, especially birds, but I also appreciate the many wonderful landscapes I constantly observe in my travels.

Below is a small sampling of the sort or work I do. Just click on each thumbnail for a larger version of the image.

Geese lifting off at sunset, Lubec, Maine
Geese lifting off at sunset, Lubec, Maine
Yellowstone grizzly heading to his winter den
Yellowstone grizzly heading to his winter den
Great egrets start an aerial battle (or a dance?)
Great egrets start an aerial battle (or a dance?)
Yellowstone elk welcomes a 21 degree morning
Yellowstone elk welcomes a 21 degree morning
The fishing boat graveyard on Campobello Island, Canada
The graveyard on Campobello Island, Canada
Hot air balloons over the Valley of the Gods, Utah
Hot air balloons over the Valley of the Gods, Utah
Amish daycare, father and girls working a team of horses
Amish daycare
Altima oriole courting display
Altima oriole courting display
Foliage reflection on the bog
Fire on the water
Image of 3 Whooping Cranes and a Sandhill crane
3 Whooping Cranes and a Sandy
Killdeer in a N.Dakota cornfield
Killdeer in a N.Dakota cornfield
Cedar waxwing looking for lunch
Cedar waxwing looking for lunch