Yellowstone spans a vast territory of almost 9000 square kilometers and 140 miles of roads in 2 loops. And it’s more likely to see wildlife early in the morning or late evening when the weather is cool. Still while you are driving from one point to another there is a chance to see some animals. Bison is probably the most populated species in Yellowstone, you can see them on the roads near Lamar Valley, and my first encounter with bison was near Old Faithful geyser.
In the beginning they were just hanging out in the fields not far away from the geyser , but few hours later two male bison have started a show that none expected. Obviously it’s their mating season so they’ve been showing off in front of the female by chasing each other and fighting.
Those massive beasts were growling and butting each other, they ran all the way till the parking lot with plenty of people out there and all I could see was a pile of dust. I rushed to them to get some shots from closer distance when they started charging back. One male just blasted back towards me and I managed to get some nice shots.
Here he comes from the parking lot.
This woman on the trail was heading to the parking, but she had to turn back and run as fast as she could 🙂
The other male remained there for a while but this one was not giving up. So he went back for a revenge, and it was at this moment when a man in a wheelchair was passing by and the bison just popped up from nowhere right in front of him, he was lucky that bison had no interest in him, although I’m pretty sure he was scared 🙂
Bison is probably the easiest one to catch in Yellowstone, I desperately wanted to get a shot of grizzly bear or a wolf. In order to do that you should move around the whole park and hope to be lucky to see one.
Canadian geese are often seen in Yellowstone.
I was not lucky to see any elk in Yellowstone but I caught deer instead.
There were two of them in bushes and I started crouching silently to hunt them down on my camera, but those animals are very cautious , they hear everything and can run very fast. The trick is if you remain still they will approach you by themselves, and I managed to make some shots from less than 3 meters.
A crowd of people with huge binoculars were watching a pack of wolves few miles away from a viewing point, I could see how they’ve been feeding on buffalo carcass, people said this wolf pack killed the buffalo 4 days ago, and they are still on it. Some enthusiasts were standing there all those days and watching it all day long. I tried to make a shot but it was way too far and almost nothing to be seen on photo, so I moved on.
It was almost end of the day and I wanted to drive yo Yellowstone lake to see if the sunset is any good there, hopping to find some nice spot, I was thinking to myself, what a shame I didn’t see any grizzly.
Then in few kilometers I saw 2 guys with gigantic lenses and I thought there is definitely something interesting happening.
I stopped the car and asked the guy what’s going on here and he said there is a grizzly out there.
And that was a moment of joy ! Finally I found what I came here for.
I rushed back to my car to get the camera , hooked up quickly the tele lens and went back.
He is coming, shouted the guy !
And here he is.
In 5-10 minutes the crowd started gathering, and a park ranger came along. He was really concerned about such a number of people close to a wild beast. He was trying to break up people by saying ok guys you took the shot now drive away but it was not working, people were just standing there and shooting. Then he had to adjust and he went like
– Hey you , do you have a place to hide if the bear charges ?
– Yeah here is my car
– Ok fine stay close to you car.
I was next to my car just in case, but in few minutes the bear stated to move away from us to the fields, and that was it.
I was really happy to see grizzly here and I consider myself really lucky to see him that close.
He was just in 20 meters from us, showed no aggression and was pretty calm.
This was my last day in Yellowstone but managed to see a lot in two days, I wish I could stay longer but I had to continue my journey.
I have headed to Southwest again and my next stop is going to be Mono Lake.