“You Never Know …”

… what you will experience in nature”!

Today’s post comes from a photo trip to Mount Evans (Colorado) a few years ago. The photos in this post were not captured by me, but by my good friend, Adam, who lives in Colorado and often joins me for a few days of hiking and photographing when I go to Colorado.

While traversing the high roads of Mt. Evans, Adam and his daughter, who were with me this morning, observed a group of Mountain Goats that were grazing along the mountainside and slowly going up towards the summit. We found a spot to pull off the road and began hiking out into abundant wildflowers, while hoping the goats would continue towards us. We were not disappointed!

As the goats came closer, Adam walked a ways to the side to grab some photos of the goats as they approached his daughter and me. As shown in the photos below, the mountain goats of Mount Evans are quite used to people … one mom and a few kids came right to us and checked us out:

Mountain Goat family checking us out

Mountain Goat family checking us out

Mountain Goat family checking us out

After giving us the “thumbs up”, the group continued grazing up the mountainside:

Mountain Goat family checking us out

Adam, I’m sure you will see this post and wonder if this awesome memory still resonates with you, too!

  • Apple iPhone
  • Handheld
  • ISO 32 and ISO 40
  • Aperture f/2.2
  • Shutter 1/24,000 sec. to 1/32,000 sec.
Posted in: Mammals, Nature Photography | Tags: ,
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Color Over Mt Evans

Today’s post features an image I captured on my last visit to Mount Evans (Colorado), but never published.

While driving along the Mount Evans Highway, the sky turned into a nice kaleidoscope of colors:

Rainbow or Sun Dog? I’m pretty sure this is a “Sun Dog”, but I am not a meteorologist (although I can get the weather forecast correct about as frequently as a lot of our meterologists)! LOL

(02/02/23 Update): One of my astute post readers has noted that this is not a “Sun Dog”, but a portion of a rainbow among the clouds. Thanks!

  • Canon 5D Mark 3 camera body
  • Canon 28-135mm, f/3.5 – f/5.6 IS lens
  • Handheld, with IS “On”
  • ISO 200
  • Aperture f/16
  • Shutter 1/25 sec.
Posted in: Landscape Photography | Tags: ,
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That First Step is a Dilly!

Today’s post features an image I captured at the top of Mount Evans, Colorado, a few years ago. While wandering around at the summit of Mount Evans, I found this Mountain Goat as it seemingly was pondering his next step.

These sure-footed mammals can traverse nearly any terrain … even those that are pretty vertical!

Mountain Goat analyzing his next step

  • Canon 7D camera body
  • Canon 100-400mm, f/4.5 – f/5.6 IS lens
  • Handheld, with IS “On”
  • ISO 800
  • Aperture f/8
  • Shutter 1/1000 sec.
Posted in: Uncategorized | Tags: ,
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No Waste Here!

Today’s post features a fun image I captured a few years ago on a dew-covered Dorsett Hill Prairie (west-central Missouri). The Thread-waisted Wasp is an interesting find. With it’s uniquely long and very slim “waist”, this is a larger and nonsocial wasp. The Thread-waisted Wasp is an ambush attacker, immobilizing insect prey with a swift venomous sting.

Here is one of my favorite images:

Thread-waisted Wasp

For those who follow my blog, hopefully I am back for a while! As with a lot of you, I contracted Covid about 3 weeks ago. Although my case was pretty mild, it still was not fun! All symptoms are now gone, except for the typical exhaustion, which I understand will likely linger for some time yet. But the worst is over!

  • Canon 5D Mark 3 camera body
  • Canon 180mm, f/3.5 IS lens + Canon 1.4x TC
  • Bogen 3021 tripod, with ballhead
  • ISO 400
  • Aperture f/8
  • Shutter 1/800 sec.
Posted in: Insect Photography, Macro Photography | Tags: , ,
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Long and Winding Road

Today’s post features a lone, wild wolf that I encountered in Yellowstone’s Lamar Valley a few winters ago. While driving the snowy road, this lone wolf was seen as he seemed to wander about, following a path in the snow.

Wolf behavior is very complex and I’m not sure what his goal was. Was it to find a mate? Maybe he had left, either willingly or being forced from his old pack, and now looking for a new pack to join? Whatever the purpose, it was interesting to watch him making his way up the long and winding path in the snow … and he stopped a couple of times to let out an eerily moaning howl.

Here are a couple of images of this sighting:

A lone wolf in snow

The above image was blown up to see the details. The image below is closer to what the human eye would see; can you spot the wolf?:

Lone Wolf following a snow trail in Yellowstone NP

Note: Being far away, for a short time I couldn’t decide if this was a grey wolf, or a coyote. But the howl and size led me to believe this was a wolf. And if I’m incorrect, it’s still a wonderful scene in our snowy, first National Park!

  • Canon 1D Mark 3 camera body
  • Canon 100-400mm, f/4.5-f/5.6 IS lens + Canon 1.4x TC (0n first image, only)
  • Handheld, with IS “On”
  • ISO 200
  • Aperture f/22
  • Shutter 1/250 sec.
  • Focal Length: Top Image = 540mm and Bottom Image = 100mm
Posted in: Mammals | Tags: ,
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Hunting in the Snow

Today’s post features a lone, red fox as it forages in Yellowstone’s Lamar Valley, for rodents under the snow cover.

Watching a red fox hunting in snow is a real treat. Using their ultra-sensitive hearing, when they hear a noise under the snow, they stop, tilt their head and listen for the sound of rodents running about, under the snow. Once they identify the location, they will leap in the air and come down, nose first, into the snow … and often re-emerge with a small rodent in their mouth! Unfortunately, this fox was not able to locate any rodents:

Red Fox hunting in snow

  • Canon 1D Mark 3 camera body
  • Canon 500mm, f/4 IS lens + Canon 2x TC
  • Bogen 3021 Tripod, with Wemberley gimbal head
  • ISO 200
  • Aperture f/11
  • Shutter 1/1250 sec.
Posted in: Mammals, Nature Photography | Tags: ,
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