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Trip Report ~ by Bill Hamblin

13 - 15 August 2010

Black bear cubs by John William Uhler © Copyright All Rights Reserved

~ August 2010 ~

Black bear by John William Uhler Copyright © All Rights Reserved

Friday - 13 August

I left work just after noon and made good time. Had a front going thru the the area. When I left Idaho Falls it was 71 degrees, it was 44 degrees in Hayden Valley and 39 degrees when I crossed Dunraven Pass just after 5:00 p.m. I did a quick trip out to Hayden around 4:00 p.m. and was delighted to find a grizzly sow with one cub of the year (coy) way back in Alum Creek. I have not seen or even heard about this bear, but I heard later that she has been seen lately in Hayden. I did stop at Grizzly Overlook and they had a small grizzly visible off and on. Heading over the pass I didn't see the grizzly sow with two coys near the road, but found her way up on # 1 clearing viewed from Trash can # 58 (apparently she was on the road earlier in the morning). At 7:15 p.m. I found a grizzly high on Bear Meadow south of the Institute. And at 7:45 p.m. I found one black male near the Lamar Canyon Rendezvous area. The rain stopped and it was good sleeping near Silver Gate for the night.

Saturday - 14 August

Foggy in Lamar, west of the Institute this morning, and a little high fog in Crystal Drainage. I decided to go to Antelope Creek this morning. Pulling into the new bathroom pullout near Chittendon Road, I found the grizzly sow with two coys - in the pullout. That sow is pretty big at 25 feet and not in tall grass. She soon grazed across the road and over the hill reappearing above Mae West Curve in about 15 minutes. At 8:00 a.m. I found my only black bear of the weekend in the fog on Specimen Ridge. I missed the spotting of the weekend. Lots of wolf watchers on Bob's Knob this morning with adults and pups in view. They noticed a large dark grizzly in the Slough Creek bottoms and over the next half hour eventually moved to the lower pullout below Bob's Knob and then decided to go thru the Knob on his way to the road. Rick was getting everyone off the hill and into the cars as the bear came thru the Knob.

Black bear cubs by John William Uhler Copyright © All Rights Reserved
The grizzly then headed for the road and Rick had to get everyone there into the cars. I would have liked to be on Dave's Hill to watch that. The large dark grizzly finally arrived south of Fisherman's in Lamar and was good viewing for over an hour this side of the river. During the evening I had one dark adult wolf and four puppies in the bottom of Lion Meadow near dusk.

Sunday - 15 August

I stayed in Pebble Creek Saturday evening, quite cool and nice sleeping. It was about 32 degrees in the valley in the morning. I decided to wolf-it this morning. I found a black adult in the bottom of Lion Meadow then the alpha female and four pups appeared. The adult male bought in breakfast for the pups and then they moved back towards the rocks. Rick noticed a herd 15-20 elk behind the diagonal forest, and the wolves eventually went that way to investigate. Both adults and four pups made a circle up and around - good viewing for the 1 1/2 mile distance. On the way over Dunraven the grizzly sow with two coy's was back just south of the pass itself.

Other News

They are paving the road near Norris now, but still 15-30 minute delays. They clip sealed the road from Norris to Canyon this week, 25 mph signs. Still really green most places, as they have been getting rain most late afternoons.

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

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