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Yellowstone Up Close and Personal

12 - 14 June 2009 Trip Report

Trip Report ~ by Bill Hamblin

Wolves near Canyon by John William Uhler © Copyright All Rights Reserved

~ June 2009 ~

Mount Haynes by John William Uhler Copyright © All Rights Reserved

Friday - 12 June 2009

I was a little late leaving work, but had a cinnamon black bear on the top of Dunraven Pass about 4:00 PM. Ralph called that he had a courting pair of grizzlies in the 10-4 meadow. They were in high sagebrush and couldn't tell a lot about them. We caught them again on Saturday and found out that the sow was a nice blond grizzly and the boar was quite dark. We also had a black bear in 10-4, one meadow south of the courting pair. At 5:40 PM I found a black bear on the bottom of Specimen Ridge. At 6:30 PM I found a small grizzly hunting elk calves north of Coyote Overlook, another brief sighting. At 7:00 I spotted a bear in K meadow viewed from Coyote Overlook (put it down as a black bear, but not sure). At 8:35 PM I found a grizzly with one cub of the year (coy) moving east across the large clearing west and south of the Institute, behind Jasper Ridge. And at 9:05 PM I found a grizzly sow with one coy north of Wrecker Pullout (the Cottonwood wolf pack had killed a elk on Thursday, it had a boar grizzly plus the family group on it Thursday and Friday morning). Lucky to see the sow and coy, not much left on the carcass and she wasn't there after this evening. Ralph had a campsite at Tower.

Saturday - 13 June 2009

It was 33 degrees this morning, but felt warmer. I found a grizzly with a cub (it ended up being a yearling) on ski slope about 6:00 AM. Mid morning had the courting pair back on 10-4, out for 45 minutes. At 7:00 PM I found the grizzly sow with one coy going west in the big clearing south and west of the Institute. Had one black bear near Ski Slope near dark.

Sunday - 14 June 2009

Old Faithful Eruption and Buffalo by John William Uhler Copyright © All Rights Reserved

I hadn't had a wolf all weekend so decided to start down on the confluence. I got a quick look at a black wolf above the river corridor. Then I found a courting pair of grizzlies on Penny Lane. Later Ralph had the grizzly with one coy in the bowl (about 200 yards from where they were Saturday night). Moving to Slough, George found a few of the Cottonwood wolves in the Slough Creek bottoms, ended up being 3 blacks and a gray. While trying to relocate them, from Aspen Pullout, Ralph found a black bear on mom's ridge. A courting pair of black bears 10 yards off the road between Rainly Lake and Calcite (Camino boar and black sow). And finally a brief sighting of a dark grizzly hunting elk calves at Trout Creek in Hayden Valley (seemed strange, there was a lot of elk on across the river to the east, but none visible to the west where the grizzly was hunting, but then we noticed a elk calf hiding in the sage, but quite a ways from the hunting grizzly).

Other News

Eight bighorn eves and seven lambs at Calcite now. One big chick in the bald eagle nest across from Coyote Overlook. A family of great horned owls now being seen two buildings away from the Visitor Center at Mammoth (two large chicks I'm told). The great gray still being seen early and late at Phantom Lake. There is a pair of foxes near Rainly Lake every morning, both Saturday and Sunday had the female, I think, right on the road (but no wolf sighting on Saturday and no coyote sighting today, so no three dog day for me this weekend.

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