Yellowstone National Park 2013 Trip Reports
Trip Report ~ Bear & Wolf Sightings ~ by Bill Hamblin
11 thru 18 July 2013
~ July 2013 ~
Thursday - 11 July
I left around 5:00 a.m. and made good time to the park. Warm again today, 81 degrees in the afternoon. At 3:30 p.m. I spotted a grizzly sow with two yearlings in the clearing behind Ski Slope. At 6:50 p.m. we had a small grizzly grazing in A-Z Meadow. At 7:20 p.m. we watched the middle gray of the Lamar Canyon Wolf Pack digging for over 20 minutes for a ground squirrel just north of Hitching Post. It is a hard time for the wolves this time of year - with most of the elk going high and pups to feed. Some of the pack have been observed running the roads in the early morning for road kills. At 7:55 p.m. I found a black bear below # 1 finger of Norris. At 8:20 p.m. the grizzly sow with three cubd of the year (COY'S) running fast across the sagebrush flats south of Hitching Post. At 8:50 p.m. we watched a black bear on the top of Norris viewed from the Confluence. At 9:20 p.m. I found a cinnamon black bear off road near Trout Lake. I spent the first two nights outside the park near Silver Gate, then got a campsite at Pebble Creek Campground for the rest of my trip.
Friday - 12 July
50 degrees in the morning warming up to 82 degrees today. Joe and Jenny from Livingston showed me a red tailed hawk nest in a rock face at Lamar Canyon east this morning. I never saw one nest in a crevice before, only one large chick. At 6:00 a.m. we had a small grizzly in A-Z meadow. At 7:05 a.m. I found a grizzly sow with one yearling in the Bowl, viewed from the Institute. At 8:35 a.m. I spotted a large cinnamon black bear high north of Slough Creek. At 9:30 a.m. we had a grizzly in K Meadow. At 10:00 a.m. I found a small cinnamon black bear north of Footbridge Pullout. At 7:00 p.m. my last sighting for the day was a small grizzly grazing in the Divide Ridge, viewed from Slough Creek.
Saturday - 13 July
47 degrees in the morning warming to 81 degrees. At 5:35 a.m. I spotted a grizzly sow with one yearling high in A-Z Meadow. At 5:45 a.m. I found some of the Junction Butte Wolf Pack on Jasper Bench. Four grays and two blacks moved off south and went up and over the Salad Bowl. At 5:50 a.m. we had a black bear with two COY'S high and close to the trees in Salad Bowl. At 4:15 p.m. the black female wolf of the Lamar Canyon Pack was south of Trash Can. This wolf is really getting accustomed to the roads and the rangers have been trying to haze it hopefully to condition her away from the roads. At 7:30 p.m. we watched a grizzly sow with two yearlings on Ski Slope. At 9:00 p.m. I spotted a black bear behind Jasper Bench.
Sunday - 14 July
50 degrees at daylight warming to 90 degrees. I watched a few golden eagles near Hitching Post today. At 6:15 a.m. I spotted a large grizzly in the Bowl viewed from the Institute. At 7:40 a.m. we had a small brown grizzly in K Meadow. At 8:00 a.m. I found a large dark grizzly in K-2 Meadow. At 9:00 a.m. we had a grizzly sow with one yearling in A-Z Meadow. At 7:15 p.m. the black female, middle gray and 859M came out north of Hitching Post for over 30 minutes. Also in view for 8 - 10 minutes were the two black pups, about the size of a small coyote.
Monday - 15 July
46 degrees this morning warming up to a hot 90 degrees today. At 5:15 a.m. I started with a grizzly in K Meadow. At 7:45 a.m. big gray, middle gray and the black female of the Lamar Canyons came down and crossed the road west of Hitching Post (21's old crossing). At 8:00 a.m. we had a grizzly near Dead Puppy Hill viewed from Footbridge. At 8:00 p.m. I spotted a grizzly in Penny Lane viewed from the Confluence. At 8:15 p.m. my last bear sighting for the day was a small brown grizzly in K Meadow.
Tuesday - 16 July
47 degrees in the morning warming to 73 degrees. At 6:15 a.m. I saw a grizzly in K Meadow. It was out until well after 9:00 a.m. At 8:00 p.m. my last sighting was a grizzly sow with two yearlings in K Meadow.
Wednesday - 17 July
50 degrees this morning warming to 73 degrees. At 6:00 a.m. we had the black female and 859M wolves of the Lamar Canyon wolves near Footbridge. The black female crossed between the Hitching Post and Footbridge Pullouts, while 859M moved far to the east before finally getting across the road to the north. At 6:10 a.m. I spotted a grizzly sow with two yearlings in K Meadow. At 7:15 a.m. we watched a grizzly high in Salad Bowl. At 7:20 a.m. I found a black bear on the middle ridge south of Slough Creek stop sign viewed from Coyote Overlook. At 8:15 a.m. there was a dark grizzly in the Salad Bowl. At 7:30 p.m. I found a large grizzly in K-2 Clearing viewed from Footbridge Pullout.
Thursday - 18 July
49 degrees leaving the campground this morning. I made it a very short day, leaving the valley before 7:00 a.m. At 5:08 a.m. a cinnamon black bear crossed the road in front of me in Round Prairie. AT 6:00 a.m. middle gray with a leg or two of an elk calf or mule deer fawn on her way back to the den north of Trash Can. And finally at 7:35 a.m. I watched a grizzly grazing 150 yards off the road at Mae West Curve at Antelope Creek. I waited until he picked up his head to reveal it was Scar Face. Nice that my last grizzly in Yellowstone for the summer was an old acquaintance.
The bison have started their rut, with more traffic or buffalo jams every day. As you can see the grizzly sightings have slowed greatly, most in the first hour or two and the last hour or two of the evenings.
Wolf watchers: Rick and Kara from Michigan, Rick M, Dan and Laurie L, Kathy L Wendy, Kathy M. from Colorado, Mike and Emily, Amy, Peter, Doug M. and Jeremy. Bear watchers: Alan J. now from Emigrant, Montana, Jennings from Idaho, and Sydney H from Idaho and her brother Jerry. Others: Bill W, McNeil L, Carl S, Bob L, Frank and Diane B from Michigan, Ray and Darlene from Pennsylvania, Ray from Idaho, Dan H, Nathan V, and Brandon who works for Nathan.
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