Best of the Tetons, Great Photography Tours In Jackson, WY

June 2018 Daily Journal for GTNP and JH

Wildflowers

“Summer Returns to the Tetons!”

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Check Out These Popular Pages:  If I Had Only One (Summer) Day in the Tetons: and A Trip to Jackson Hole and June 2017: | June 2016: | June 2015: | June 2014: |

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June 23, 2018 – Saturday

Schwabacber Sunrise

Schwabacher Sunrise: This image was captured as five sets of bracketed images, merged and stitched in Lightroom. Nikon D850 and Nikon 24-70 mm Lens, Tripod.

Buck Mule Deer

Buck Mule Deer: Rim lit buck seen on the East Boundary Road near Lost Creek Ranch. Nikon D850 and Tamron 150-600 mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Pronghorn Doe

Pronghorn Doe: Also seen near Lost Creek Ranch.

Purple Lupines

Purple Lupines: Taken just before lunch along Pilgrim Creek Road. This is a two shot, stacked image. One focused on the close flowers and the other was focused on the patches of plants in the water. They were merged in Photoshop. Nikon D850 and Nikon 24-70 mm Lens, Handheld.

Lounging Marmot

Lounging Marmot: Also seen along Pilgrim Creek Road. It opened only recently. Nikon D850 and Tamron 150-600 mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

July is on the doorstep! It is usually loaded with plenty of variety in landscapes, wildlife, and area activities! Check out these previous July Daily Journals

July 2017: |  July 2016: | July 2015: | July 2014:

If you are interested in taking a Best of the Tetons Photo Tourwith me, click the photo below! The tours help me pay for this site and allow me to continue to supply all of the free information! For inquiries, send an email toinfo@bestofthetetons.com. June has numerous open spots and I am starting to fill dates in July and August. Remember…book early for September…slots are filling fast!

Best of the Tetons Photo Tours

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June 22, 2018 – Friday

Osprey Fly By

Osprey Fly By: I went south this afternoon instead of into the park. This Osprey flew by me a few times before returning to her nest. Nikon D850 and Tamron 150-600 mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Osprey Landing

OspreyNikon D850 and Tamron 150-600 mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Osprey on the Nest

Osprey on the Nest: Looking back, I might have chosen to use my D5 body for the Osprey flight shots, but it does a plenty good job. It also allows for considerable cropping like this one. Nikon D850 and Tamron 150-600 mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Para Kite

Para Kite: The South Park Feed Grounds can provide a variety of subject matter, including fishermen, dogs fetching sticks in Flat Creek, and even this guy practicing with his kite. Nikon D850 and Tamron 150-600 mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Red-winged Blackbirds

Red-winged Blackbirds: The area has numerous birds like these blackbirds. Also watch for Bald Eagles, Red-tailed Hawks, Eastern Kingbirds, Hummingbirds, Killdeer, Sandpipers, Sandhill Cranes, Great Blue Herons, Geese, Swans, and a variety of waterfowl. Nikon D850 and Tamron 150-600 mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Red-winged Blackbird and Barn Swallow

Red-winged Blackbird and Barn Swallow: I was focused on the Blackbird when the Barn Swallow buzzed him. Nikon D850 and Tamron 150-600 mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Cinnamon Teal

Cinnamon Teal: Taken near one of the ponds at the South Park Feed Grounds. Nikon D850 and Tamron 150-600 mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Road News! I received a report that Pilgrim Creek Road is open. I heard the bridge over the Gros Ventre will not open until the first of next week.

Software News! There is a new update for Photoshop CC, Lightroom Classic CC, and Camera Raw CC.

Great News! It has been a while in the works, but I am now offering the use of a Tamron 150-600mm G2 lens for BOTH Nikon and Canon users while taking a photo tour with me. Quite a few Nikon users have taken advantage of the opportunity (many of which have purchased the lens afterwards), but the new Canon version should be here early next week.

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June 21, 2018 – Thursday – First Day of Summer!

Alpenglow

Alpenglow: I was out early today, catching Alpenglow across from Triangle X Ranch. These fences lack the historic and romantic charm of the old buck rail fences that used to roll over these hills. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200 mm Lens, Tripod.

Photographer

Photographer and GirlfriendNikon D850 and Nikon 70-200 mm Lens, Tripod.

Morning Boats

Morning Boats: I did a loop through the northern portion of the park looking for 399 and her cubs. This was taken at Leek’s Marina at first light. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Morning Sky

Morning Sky: Taken from the shore of Jackson Lake. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Wildflowers

Wildflowers: There are several types of large yellow flowers dotting the valley floor right now. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

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June 20, 2018 – Wednesday – Last Day of Spring

Hansen Barn

Hansen Barn: A few days ago, a story in the JH News & Guide reported the permanent bridge over the Gros Ventre River would be open today. I drove us Spring Gulch Road, but the bridge was still under construction. No traffic could use the bridge. I had to double back to the highway so I stopped along the deserted road to take this shot of the old Cliff Hansen barn. I also photographed a Red-tailed Hawk on a telephone line.  Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Mother Moose and Calves

Mother Moose and Calves: I had planned on going “up the Gros Ventre” to check on wildflowers, but stopped capture this Moose family. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Tripod.

Bumble Bee

Bumble Bee: I found a few wildlfowers along the edges of Slide Lake up the Gros Ventre. The flower is a Sticky Geranium. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Wild Columbine

Wild Columbine: I have a few domestic Columbine around the house, hopefully to entice Hummingbirds. This flower is a wild one photographed next to Slide Lake. Most of the other Columbine in the same are were white. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Tripod.

White Columbine

White ColumbineNikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Tripod.

Butterfly

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June 19, 2018 – Tuesday

Mother Moose

Mother Moose: Spotted along the Gros Ventre early this morning. She had two calves, but I didn’t get shots of them I liked. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Homesteads Panorama

Homesteads: I kept hoping to see the tops of the Tetons, but they stayed covered all day. Click this image to see it much larger. Nikon D5 and 24-70 mm Lens, Tripod.

Bison Bull

Bison Bull: One of quite a few Bison seen along Elk Ranch Flats. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Signal Mountain Vista View

Signal Mountain Vista View: The road to the top of Signal Mountain opened recently. Nikon D5 and 24-70 mm Lens, Handheld.

Mule Deer

Mule Deer: These two were grazing near the Moose Visitor’s Center. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Mule Deer

Mule Deer: It’s easy to see how they get their name. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

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June 18, 2018 – Monday

Storm Clouds

Storm Clouds: I was checking the Gros Ventre for baby Moose, when this storm blew through. I set up the Lightning Trigger, but by the time I was set up, the rain hit. I spent about 15 minutes hunkered down at mailbox corner while sleet and small hail pounded my truck. Once the worst passed by, I went to the nearby Mormon Row Barns. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200 mm Lens, Tripod.

Soft Barn

Soft Barn: I took this shot with the telephoto lens, through a quarter mile of light rain. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

During the Rain

During the RainNikon D850 and Nikon 70-200 mm Lens, Handheld.

After the Rain

After the Rain: Colors are always so intense right after a rain! Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Jackson Peak Pano

Jackson Peak Pano: I took this four shot pano from the new parking area and rest room along Mormon Row. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200 mm Lens, Handheld.

Incoming Jet

Incoming JetNikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Baby Moose

Baby Moose: I went back to the Gros Ventre late in the evening and found the Moose family. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Mother Moose

Mother MooseNikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Bears: I received a report that 399 and her two cubs were visible from the Pilgrim Creek Road area a little before noon.

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June 17, 2018 – Sunday – Father’s Day

Chapel of the Transfiguration is Open: The contractor’s trailer and supplies are out of the picture at the Chapel. They replaced the wooden walk boards with the new, dark brown PVC material. The also added a set of benches on the south side to the building. Church services are still being held on Sundays, but other than scheduled weddings, tourists and photographers can go inside and take photos through the picture window.

Geese

Canada Geese: I did a quick run this morning, checking out a few other places. These Geese families were captured at the Rendezvous Park (R Park) on the south end of the Moose-Wilson Road. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Tripod.

Mule's Ear Wildflowers

Mule’s Ear Wildflowers: This species of flowers, which look similar to Arrowleaf Balsom Root, are now appearing in many zones. Mule’s Ears are prominent now along the west end of Antelope Flats Road. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Mule's Ear Wildflowers

Mule’s Ear Wildflowers and Buckrail Fence Remnants: Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Peach House and Moody Clouds

Peach House and Moody Clouds: It rained off and on all night. There were breaks in the clouds off and on this morning, revealing a few low hanging clouds. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Singing Meadowlark

Singing Meadowlark: Taken along Mormon Row Road with Blacktail Butte as a backdrop. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Road Updates: Mormon Row is now open all the way through from Antelope Flats Road and Gros Ventre Road. The two dirt roads off the East Boundary Road are open, too. These roads often give us access to Bison, Pronghorns, Badgers, Foxes, Coyotes, & Wolves, along with American Kestrels, Red-tailed Hawks, Swainson’s Hawks, Bald Eagles, Meadowlarks, and a variety of Sparrows. Signal Mountain Road is finally open!

Moose Calves

Moose Calves: This is a “record shot” of two newborn calves along the Gros Ventre. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Bull Moose

Bull Moose: This afternoon, a nice sized bull and cow Moose were grazing next to the Gros Ventre River. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Bull Moose

Bull Moose: To celebrate Father’s Day, my wife and youngest son went to Leek Pizza Parlor for a late lunch. I only took my D850 and 150-600 lens…no tripod. I brought it just in case one of the Grizzlies was visible. None were, but we found the Moose on the Gros Ventre. I did these all handheld with the vibration reduction turned on. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Mountain Bluebird

Mountain Bluebird: It’s difficult to walk up to a Bluebird, but they will occasionally fly to a nearby perch. This one posed for a few shots in between the Moose shots. The soft background is the GV River. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

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June 16, 2018 – Saturday

Lake Creek

Lake Creek: Taken along the Moose-Wilson Road. Nikon D850 and 70-200 mm Lens, Handheld.

Wildflowers Pano

Balsom Root Wildflowers Pano: Taken at the Chapel of the Sacred Heart as a two shot pano. Mule’s Ears are blooming in many areas of the park. They look quite similar.  Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Elk Ranch

Elk Ranch: Taken as a band of light hit the old dude ranch cabins. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200 mm Lens, Handheld.

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June 15, 2018 – Friday

Sunrise Flat Creek

Sunrise Flat Creek: Often, we get beautiful clouds over the Tetons, but they never “turn on” because of the clouds in the east. I stopped along Flat Creek this morning and took the mellow shot of the glow from the sun. You might like this earlier Feature Post:  Teton Sunrises: It Takes Two to Tango

Yellow-bellied Marmot

Yellow-bellied Marmot: Spotted along the Gros VentreRiver. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Bull Moose

Bull Moose: Feeding on willows along the Moose-Wilson Road. Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Tripod.

Bull Moose

Bull Moose: Moving along Moose Pond on the Moose-Wilson Road. As you can see, this Moose has shed its shaggy winter fur.  Nikon D850 and 150-600 mm Lens, Tripod.

Milky Way

Milky Way: This was captured as four vertical images, and stitched in Lightroom Classic CC. I took the images late Wednesday from a pullout along the road from Red Lodge Cooke City. Nikon D5 and Sigma 24mm F/1.4 Art Lens, Tripod.

Sleeping Griz

Sleeping Griz: Another shot from Thursday in Yellowstone. Nikon D500 and 150-600 mm Lens, Tripod.

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June 14, 2018 – Home Again! Thursday

Black Bear Cub

Black Bear Cub: If you are just now checking in on Best of the Tetons, I did a quick tour out to Cody, then across the Chief Joseph Scenic Drive to Cooke City, and back home via Yellowstone. I took this shot between Tower Falls and Dunraven Pass. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Tripod.

Black Bear Cub

Black Bear Cub: The youngster was high in a pine tree, then dropped down to find its mother.Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Tripod.

Black Bear Cub's Morning Feeding

Black Bear Cub’s Morning FeedingNikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Tripod.

Lower Falls of the Yellowstone

Lower Falls of the Yellowstone: I haven’t been to this area in a while, so I stopped there for a thousand photos…most of which are vertical pano parts using the 150-600mm.

Snowy

Snow: From what I was told, this sub-adult was kicked off by Raspberry only a couple of days ago. Raspberry is being courted by a big boar. somewhere in the area. Nikon D500 and 150-600 mm Lens, Tripod.

Snowy 

Snow: She was near the Lake View Overlook turnout about 9 miles east of Fishing Bridge. I shot these with my Nikon D500 and Tamron 150-600mm to get the extra reach. I just received a notification my Nikon 200-500mm lens is on its way back to me from Nikon Service. Hopefully, it will be in perfect working order. Nikon D500 and 150-600 mm Lens, Tripod.

Morning Stallions

Morning Stallions:  I stayed out late both nights to work on night shots—then was able to be out early the next morning. This isn’t the sharpest image I ever took, but it was still very early in the morning.

GTNP: I drove through the Tetons on my way back from Yellowstone. I was prepared to stop for any kind of bear activity, but didn’t see any. Pilgrim Creek Road and the Dump Road are still closed.

I’ll be adding more shots form the trip later.

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June 13, 2018 – Wednesday on the Road

Fighting Stallions

Fighting Stallions: Taken at McCullough Peaks Horse Management Area. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Foal

Foal: I took a lot of shots at McCullough Peaks. I hear the BLM is enforcing a new 300 foot rule now, but I haven’t seen the exact wording yet. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Tripod.

Devil's Canyon on the Bighorn River

Devil’s Canyon on the Bighorn River: Lights from Lovell, WY at the horizon. Nikon D5 and Sigma 24mm F/1.4 Art Lens, Tripod.

Milky Way Over the Bighorn Canyon

Milky Way Over Bighorn Canyon: These are quick edits while sitting in the Elk Horn Bar and Grill in Meteetse, WY. Nikon D5 and Sigma 24mm F/1.4 Art Lens, Tripod.

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June 12, 2018 – Tuesday

It looks like I have a small window of time between photo tours. I am packing up to go to Cody, WY for a few days to photograph the wild horses in the area. I’ll try to post a few photos from the trip while I am out, but it depends on reliable Internet service. Check in often!

Bear Notes: I’ll  be traveling through the SE corner of Yellowstone and hope to see one or two of the Grizzly sows. I heard 399 was seen a couple of days ago in GTNP. Blondie has disappeared (as she always does about this time of the year) and 610 has not shown up at all. There have been several sightings of a Black Bear and Cubs in the Dam to Signal Mtn. area. This is mating season for Grizzlies, so you might see a couple of them roaming the zones where the sows have been. Another Black Bear and Cubs were reported to have spooked horseback trail riders near Colter Bay.

I saw a notice of short delays possible on the Moose-Wilson Road. So far, the construction at Gros Ventre Junction hasn’t caused long lines or delays. Drivers must slow down to 25 mph through parts of the zone, now.

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June 11, 2018 – Monday

Burrowing Owls

New Feature Post! The Burrowing Owls of Eastern Idaho

I had hoped to get this post ready last night, but it took me a long time to go through 3000 images of these little raptors! There are a lot of photos, so don’t miss it!

I was out early for sunrise, but clouds dropped down over the Tetons. I switched gears and looked for wildlife instead.

Bull Elk

Bull Elk: I found a herd of around 30 bulls on Elk Ranch Flats in the early morning light. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Bull Elk

Bull Elk: One of the bulls has a sizable rack already! His winter fur is almost gone, too.Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Bison with Mt. Moran

Bison with Mt. MoranNikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Bull Bison

Bull Bison: Also shaggy! This bull was seen crossing an irrigation ditch on Elk Ranch Flats. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Great Gray Owl Notes: I recently heard from a friend that works at the Raptor Center. Unfortunately, the biologists report that none of the known nesting pairs of Great Gray Owls in the Jackson Hole area produced chicks again this year. Sightings of the adults have been “spotty”—and that is a generous assessment.

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June 10, 2018 – Sunday

Grain Elevators

Grain Elevators: I am skipping back and forth between the folders of subjects from yesterday. These structures are in Tetonia, ID. Normally, I take photos of the elevators at much closer range, but stopped for this distant shot. There are similar elevators all over the west, along with the Oklahoma and Texas panhandle, but our area usually features distant mountains. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens, Handheld.

Tetonia Truck

Tetonia Truck: The last time I stopped to photograph this old truck, snow was covering the ground. Spring grasses changed the scene immensely. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens, Handheld.

Tetonia Fixer-Upper:

Tetonia Fixer-Upper: It would be easy to do a Feature Post with “fixer-uppers” in the Rocky Mountain West. Unfortunately, many of them are either falling down are be dozed to make way for a new subdivision. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens, Handheld.

Grain Elevators

Grain Elevators: I took these photos on my way to the Mountain Man Rendezvous near Rexburg yesterday. There are a few small towns along the way, loaded with interesting subject matter. The other side of the Teton Range is either agricultural based, or covered with more affordable subdivisions. Each morning and afternoon, a ribbon of commuters make the journey over Teton Pass to get to Jackson. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens, Handheld.

Burrowing Owls

Burrowing Owls: Wow! I’ve spent most of the morning going through around 3000 Burrowing Owl photos from yesterday. To do them justice, I’ll need make a  New Feature Post, so SIGN UP! You’ll get an early notice by email of the post.

Burrowing Owl

Burrowing Owl on Nearby Post: This is one of the last photos I took before needing to head home. The new post will probably be ready tonight.

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June 9, 2018 – Saturday

Fort Henry Rendezvous

Fort Henry Rendezvous: I got up early and headed over the Pass to Idaho for something. The Fort Henry Rendezvous ends on Sunday. You can still make it if you read this post early enough.

Fort Henry Rendezvous

Fort Henry Rendezvous:

Burrowing Owls

Burrowing Owls: This isn’t something I see every day in Jackson! There were two adults and ten chicks in this den.

Feeding Owls

Feeding Owls: I got lucky! This adult brought in a mouse and fed a good portion of it to this baby—outside the den.

I didn’t get home until late, so I’ll add just a few photos tonight. 

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June 8, 2018 – Friday

Schwabacher Reflections

Schwabacher Reflections: I tried out my new Sigma 24mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art Lens for Nikon F Lens last night. This one was taken during the blue light period at the traditional reflection pond. The orange glow in the cloud on the left is from lights in Victor and Driggs, ID. Nikon D5 and Sigma 24mm Art Lens, Tripod.

Milky Way

Milky Way: This was taken at the same place where I used the Rokonor F/1.4 lens a few days ago. The Sigma Art Lens is sharper edge to edge than the copy of the Rokinor I received. Nikon D5 and Sigma 24mm Art Lens, Tripod.

Schwabacher Pano

Schwabacher Pano: I set my alarm for 4:30 to go back for a chance at Schwabacher Landing. The clouds that originally tempted me moved off before I got there. Nikon D850 and Nikon 24-70 mm  Lens, Tripod.

Schwabacher Pano

Schwabacher Pano: I would have loved to had these clouds at 5:15 to 5:30 am! These passed through about an hour later.  Nikon D850 and Nikon 24-70 mm  Lens, Tripod.

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June 7, 2018 – Thursday

Curtis Canyon Vista View

Curtis Canyon Vista View: I took the rough ride up Curtis Canyon Road and found quite a few wildflowers still in prime form. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200 mm Lens, Handheld.

If you are feeling “cramped” by the Summer crowds, check out some of these previous Feature Posts 

Red-tailed Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk: I spotted this raptor as I was driving to and from Curtis Canyon via the National Elk Refuge. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Pronghorn Buck

Pronghorn Buck: The National Elk Refuge gets a lot of attention during the Winter months when 7,000+ Elk and 50-60 Bighorn Sheep are visible. During the Summer months, most people neglect the area, but I almost always find a few willing subjects. Watch for a variety of Hawks, an occasional Eagle, Badgers, Meadowlarks, Horned Larks, Pronghorns, and even possible Burrowing Owls. Along the way, stop in the Historic Miller House. It’s FREE! On the north end of the Refuge, check out the National Fish Hatchery. The self guiding tour is also FREE! The pond often has waterfowl and offers fishing if you have a Wyoming Fishing License. The evening JH Shoot Out is held on the Town Square around 6:00 to 6:30. It is also FREE! Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Stage Coach

Stage Coach: This isn’t free, but it might give you and your family a relaxed tour of downtown. Check in at the Stage Stop downtown. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

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June 6, 2018 – Wednesday

NIK Collection by DXO Labs is back! Today’s email states: “The 2018 Nik Collection by DxO is now fully functional with the latest 64-bit version of Microsoft Windows and Mac OS X.” The previous version was crashing Photoshop, to this is good news for my system. You can buy the suite for $49.99 until July 1st, when the price will go back to $69. If you are not sure, you can download the full functioning 30 day trial. The original suite by NIK was around $350, so even at full price, it is a good deal. I loaded it on my iMac Pro and all of the filters I tested are working again.

Remember, the unpaved portion of the Moose Wilson Road will be closed today and will reopen at 8:00 am tomorrow morning.

Bull Moose

Bull Moose: Seen along the Gros Ventre River this afternoon. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld.

Stormy Skies

Stormy Skies over Shadow Mountain: Taken from Antelope Flats Road. Many of the Balsom Root in this area are now past prime.

Purple Lupines

Purple Lupines: Captured along the Teton Park Road near the Taggart Lake trail head. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld

Stormy Peaks

Stormy Peaks: I received a warning on the display of my truck stating there was a Tornado Warning this afternoon. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld

Badger Pup

Badger Pup: Very young Badger seen near Elk Flats. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Tripod

Badger

Mother Badger in DandelionsNikon D5 and 150-600 mm Len, Tripod

Badger

BadgerNikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Tripod

Uinta Ground Squirrel

Uinta Ground SquirrelNikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Tripod

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June 5, 2018 – Tuesday

Gray Wolf

Gray Wolf: In April, many of us saw three Gray Wolves in the Kelly area. At some point, they seemed to have disappeared.  I saw this one crossing the southern portion of Mormon Row this afternoon. He was probably 150 yards away when I took this record shot. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld

Roundabout Construction

Gros Ventre Junction: Construction workers have now opened the new Temporary Bypass. Expect slow downs and delays there.

Temporary Closure on Moose-Wilson Road: The unpaved section of the Moose-Wilson Road in Grand Teton National Park will be temporarily closed for seasonal dust abatement beginning 4 a.m. Tuesday, June 5 and will reopen by 8 a.m. Thursday, June 7. This routine dust abatement application happens several times during the summer on the approximately one-mile unpaved section of the seven-mile road.

John Moulton Barn

John Moulton Barn: The Rokinon 24mm F1/4 lens arrived yesterday, so I took it out for a spin. Nikon D5 and Rokinon 24 mm F/1.4 Lens, Handheld

Lens Flare

Lens Flares: Taken at the John Moulton Homestead on Mormon Row. Nikon D5 and Rokinon 24 mm F/1.4 Lens, Handheld

Schwabacher Landing

Schwabacher Landing Pano: This was captured as three sets of three bracketed images, merged in Lightroom. Click the image to see it larger. Nikon D850 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens, Tripod

Schwabacher Landing

Schwabacher LandingNikon D850 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens, Tripod

Night Barn

Night Barn: I stayed out until midnight test the new lens. I may need to tweak the focus a small amount, but overall, it did fine. Nikon D5 and Rokinon 24 mm F/1.4 Lens, Tripod

Milky Way

Milky Way: These were the choices I considered. I already own a Nikon 14-24mm F/2.8 auto focus lens, but these lenses allow for up to four times light gathering ability. Nikon D5 and Rokinon 24 mm F/1.4 Lens, Tripod.

Rokinon Notes: After reviewing a lot of last night’s Rokinon photos, it is apparent the lens is sharp on the right side and soft on the left. I’m shipping it back to B&H and purchasing the discounted Sigma Art Lens. Hopefully, it will be much better!

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June 4, 2018 – Monday

Schwabacher Landing B&W

Schwabacher Landing B&W: I stayed home this morning, waiting for a Fed-Ex package. I finally looked online and noticed it wouldn’t be delivered until tomorrow. The clouds looked interesting, and there was a heavy wind, so I made a quick trip to Schwabacher Landing. For this shot, I used a Nikon D850 and a Nikon 24-70mm lens on my old Gitzo Tripod. This is a 25 second exposure at F/18 and ISO 31 in Manual Mode using a Singh-Ray 77mm Vari-N-Duo Polarizing Variable Neutral Density Filter (Standard Mount) It was dialed to the highest effect setting to try to get the longest exposure I could squeeze out of my gear. This image was taken at 1:45 pm — in other words, the worst time of the day for a shot like this!

Schwabacher Landing Notes: Last week, the water was very high in the channel under the main parking area. The Snake must have dropped some since then as there is much less current. The water is still muddy and current will prevent reflections in this area for a while. The upper reflection ponds to the north should still be fine since they are spring fed. I didn’t see any large mammals, but then it was midday. I expect to see a Mother Moose and calf or calves there at some time in the future. Beavers will have to repair their damaged dams as the water drops.

Available June Best of the Tetons Photo Tours: I have an opening or possibly two in early June (between June 6 and June 14) if you are interested! Click the link for more info.

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June 3, 2018 – Sunday

Pronghorns

Pronghorns: Early morning captures near the Jackson Hole Airport. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld

Baby Bison

Baby Bison: Taken at Elk Ranch Flats. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld

Baby Bison

Bison Calf: I didn’t try to count them, but I’d guess I saw 40 plus youngsters today. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld

Bison Calf

Bison CalfNikon D5 and Tamron  150-600 mm G2 Lens, Handheld

Mating Osprey

Mating Osprey:  Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld

Osprey

OspreyNikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld

Nest Building Osprey

Nest Building Osprey: When chicks start needing to be fed, I hope to be able to capture a few shots with a trout in the male’s talons. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld

Osprey

Osprey: One of the most easily accessed Osprey Nest is located a short distance up the Buffalo Valley Road. I hesitate to identify a nest site, but hopefully people won’t approach the nest. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld

Raptor Center Events for Summer 2018

Throughout the Summer, the Raptor Center will show some of their birds at the Jackson Lake Lodge on Mondays between 11:00am and Noon. Talon Tuesdays will be at the Visitor’s Center on Tuesdays between Noon and 2:00 pm.

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June 2, 2018 – Saturday

Red-winged Blackbird

Red-winged Blackbird: This morning turned out to be a bird day, even though I never planned it that way. I started at Flat Creek Wetlands on the north side of the Visitor’s Center. While searching around for a Marsh Wren, I spotted this Red-winged Blackbird in the willows. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld

Marsh Wren

Marsh Wren: I found one active Wren in the early morning shadows. I had to crop this one a bit more than I would have liked, but it was the best of the limited group I shot. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lenss, Handheld

Pronghorn

Pronghorn: This buck was at the base of Miller Butte on the National Elk Refuge. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld

Barn Swallow

Barn Swallow: I found a pair of active Barn Swallows on the National Elk Refuge, not far from Flat Creek. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld

Barn Swallows

Barn Swallow PairNikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld

Osprey

Osprey: Taken in the Snake River Canyon. I saw as many as five in the sky at one time. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld

Osprey

Osprey: Female…coming in for a landing. Nikon D5 and T150-600 mm Lens, Handheld

Osprey

Osprey: Male…taking off. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld

Osprey

OspreyNikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lensn, Handheld

Local Activities: The Jackson Hole Rodeo is being held on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays throughout the Summer. The JH Shootout is held on the Town Square each afternoon except on Sundays.

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June 1, 2018 – Friday

If you are a long time reader at Best of the Tetons, you already know the drill! Check out the May 2018 Daily Journal. The first few days of June will resemble the last week of May.

EIEIO 1

Another NEW FEATURE POST! I seldom post two new pages on the same day…actually never! Today, however, it seemed I NEEDED to create two posts. The first one is the June Daily Journal page you are on right now, and the other one features images that have “timely value”. The Eastern Idaho Early Iron Organization(E.I.E.I.O) Eieio is in town this weekend. If I wait to post the photos, the event will be over!

TA Moulton Barn

TA Moulton Barn: Trees and grasses are quite vivid now. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld

Early June Comments and Reports: Many of the roads inside Grand Teton National Park are open again. Notable road closures include Pilgrim Creek Road and the Dump Road, along with the southern section of Mormon Row Road and the pair of two track roads off the East Boundary Road. Recent rains have made some of the dirt roads muddy and slippery. Road construction on the new roundabout will start causing delays, and the section between the highway and Gros Ventre Campground will be closed for a week or so between 6: pm and roughly 6: am. High water recently washed out the temporary bridge over the Gros Ventre bridge on Spring Gulch road. The new permanent bridge may be completed by later in June.

Early June Wildlife Comments and Reports: The two famous Grizzly sows (399 and Blondie) have been seen regularly during the last two weeks of May. Both have year old cubs. So far, 610 has not been seen this year, but people expect her to appear with a couple of COY any day. Watch for baby Bison, Deer, Elk, Moose, Pronghorns & Foxes. Most of the big game have moved farther north into their summer zones.  Eagles, Hawks and Kestrels may be seen in most areas. A few Great Gray Owls have been spotted in the past week or so.

Early June Wildflower Comments and Reports: Arrowleaf Balsom Root flowers are nearing peak in many areas. Indian Paintbrush and Purple Lupines are popping up in many areas.

10% Lodging Discount: If you are heading to Jackson Hole, consider the Elk Refuge Inn. Mention Best of the Tetons and ask for the 10% discount!

Broad-tailed Hummingbird

Broad-tailed Hummingbird: I took this photo in natural light Thursday afternoon. I expect more opportunities to capture photos of the other three species of Hummingbirds as the month progresses. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Tripod

Bison

Bison: Taken on Elk Ranch Flats. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Handheld

Yearling Cub

Yearling Cub: Taken near Colter Bay. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Tripod

Grizzly 399 and Cub

Grizzly 399 and Cub: Some people call this the “Grassy Knoll”. Nikon D5 and 150-600 mm Lens, Tripod

Check back regularly throughout the month—and later today. I’ll be adding more photos and comments. Remember, heck out the May 2018 Daily Journal.

Index of Old Posts: I have been adding Feature Posts on Best of the Tetons since August of 2013. Click the link to see the hundreds of Feature Posts on a wide variety of topics!

 

May 2018 Daily Journal for JH & GTNP

Blondie

“The Park Awakens!”

Daily Updates Archives: ~
2018: June: | May:Apr: | Mar: | Feb: | Jan:
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>> Monthly Overviews for JH / GTNP <<

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Check Out These Popular Pages:  If I Had Only One (Summer) Day in the Tetons: and A Trip to Jackson Hole and May 2017:May 2016: | May 2015: | May 2014: | 

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May 31, 2018 – Thursday – End of the Month!

If you are a long time reader at Best of the Tetons, you already know the drill! I’ll finish off the month with a few photos, then will begin working to a new June Daily Journal. Watch for it tomorrow. If you like what you are seeing please sign up to follow the site, and tell your friends about it!

Wedding Trees

Wedding Trees: I stayed home yesterday, taking a few shots of the back yard birds. That gave me an excuse to stay out a little longer today and check out a few less visited sites. The Wedding Trees are a few miles “up the Gros Ventre”. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200 mm Lens

Rendezvous Peak

Rendezvous Peak: The light and clouds were beautiful this morning. I shot this one as just a landscape…without the Tetons. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200 mm Lens

Morning Wildflowers

Morning Wildflowers: You can find bouquets of Arrowleaf Balsam Root flowers all over the valley floor now. With a little effort, you can find clusters of bouquets. Nikon D850 and Nikon 24-70 mm Lens

Mountain Bluebird

Mountain Bluebird: Today was mostly a landscape day for me, but I stopped to catch this hunting male Bluebird along Mormon Row. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Bighorns

Bighorns: It would be easy to drive right by these Bighorns on the Upper Gros Ventre near the Atherton Creek Campground. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Redmond Creek

Redmond Creek: Redmond Creek spills into the Gros Ventre River at the upper end of Slide Lake. It would take a bit of a hike to get eye level, but it appears to be an option. I’ll go back someday when the River is clearer. The road above Atherton Creek Campground is rough and very muddy, another reason to wait to go back. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Morning at Mormon Row

Morning at Mormon Row: Another view of a familiar subject. It was “combat photography” today with two large tour buses in the area. Nikon D850 and Nikon 24-70 mm Lens

Moulton Barn

Moulton BarnNikon D850 and Nikon 24-70 mm Lens

Road and Closure Notes: The Park opened Two Ocean Lake Road, The National Forest Road near Two Ocean Lake Road, and Grand View Point parking area yesterday. Pilgrim Creek Road and the Dump Road are still closed. The two track roads off the East Boundary Road are still closed, along with the middle section of Mormon Row Road.  The area south of Sawmill Pond is still closed to human activity. Expect some delays at the Gros Ventre Junction now, including closures between the Highway and Gros Ventre Campground between 6:00 pm and 6:00 am each night for the next week.

If you are interested in taking a Best of the Tetons Photo Tour with me, click the photo below! The tours help me pay for this site and allow me to continue to supply all of the free information! For inquiries, send an email to info@bestofthetetons.com. June has numerous open spots. Remember…book early for September…slots are filling fast!

Best of the Tetons Photo Tours

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May 30, 2018 – Wednesday

Miller House

Miller House: (Technically, these photos were taken on Tuesday, but I had already included a lot of photos.) Late in the evening, I drove out to the National Elk Refuge to check it out. People had been asking about Bighorns. I stayed on the valley floor once I saw the Tetons begin to cover with clouds. I had planned on going up the Curtis Canyon Road originally.  I took this shot of the moody skies and Miller House through the fence on East Broadway. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Miller House

Miller House: I take this shot off and on during the winter when heading photograph the Bighorn Sheep on Miller Butte. It looks completely different in the Spring. Note: I didn’t see a single Bighorn. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Swainson's Hawk

Swainson’s Hawk: It was a real treat to see a Swainson’s landing on a ranch entry beam. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Swainson's Hawk

Swainson’s HawkNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Pronghorn Buck

Pronghorn Buck: This buck was grazing next to the road. I stopped the truck to shoot from the window. He kept getting closer—allowing me to take quite a few photos in the evening light.  A loud truck zoomed by and the show was over. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Pronghorn Buck

Pronghorn Buck: When I am on my tours, I tell my clients it helps to be patient and open minded. It seems on an average day, opportunities eventually present themselves. Some visitors are so preoccupied trying to get photos of Grizzlies that they miss out on a lot of other subjects. Yesterday was a good example!  Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Sleeping Indian Pano

Sleeping Indian Pano: Taken on the east end of the National Elk Refuge. I was hoping the rainbow would fill out over the Sleeping Indian. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens, Handheld (4 shots).

Pronghorn Doe

Pronghorn Doe: This is “just a Doe”, but catching her in the Balsom Root was well worth the shot. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Indian Paintbrush

Indian Paintbrush: Most of the early wildflowers are yellow, but we are now seeing quite a bit of purple and red. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Chisler

Chisler: This is another example of being open minded and being willing to photograph both the large and small subjects. It helps to get the late evening light! Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

ClarksNutcracker

Clark’s Nutcracker: I haven’t seen these in my back yard for a while. Two adults came through today, filling up with suet and heading off to their young. I expect to see the chicks in a few days. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Red Squirrel

Red Squirrel: Most mammals are shedding their winter fur and growing new, sleek summer fur. This squirrel is no exception. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Western Tanager

Western Tanager: Males have bright yellow bodies and red or orange heads. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Western Tanager

Western Tanager: Females are duller. Some are olive while others can be amber in color. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Western Tanager

Western Tanager: Leek’s ditch runs through my yard during the summer months. It makes a good water source for the birds, along with a place for the bird’s daily bath. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

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May 29, 2018 – Tuesday

Wilson Bridge

Wilson Bridge: I have been mentioning the roaring rivers. The Snake River is running high and fast! You can see large tree trunks floating downstream. Click this image to see it MUCH larger…stitched with four individual images. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Rendezvous Park Cattails

Rendezvous Park Cattails: This park is located a few blocks north of Teton Village Road (the south end of the Moose-Wilson Road). It’s a nice hidden gem, not often visited by tourists. I stopped by there this morning in hopes of seeing a mother Moose and newborn calf. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Rendezvous Park Geese

Rendezvous Park Geese: Besides this family of Canada Geese, I saw a Great Blue Heron, a couple of Yellow Warblers, a few Killdeer, and various other waterfowl. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Purple Lupines

Purple Lupines: Also captured at the R Park. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Great Gray Owl

Great Gray Owl: This female Great Gray Owl was hunting along the Moose-Wilson Road at Sawmill Pond this morning. I’ve been going by regularly for the past week or so and have only seen it twice. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Great Gray Owl

Great Gray Owl: I took a lot of images this morning and am happy with a few of them. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Great Gray Owl

Great Gray Owl: The owl flew to the ground several times, but most of the time, she flew away from me. Luckily, she flew around just enough for me to get a few decent shots. Notice the 8A, pink tag. Her mate, C3, has a pale blue leg band. She “should be” on a nest right now, so seeing her hunting all morning suggests they will not produce chicks this year. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Endorsements

3 Oz. Hummingbird Feeders

Ready-To-Fill Hummingbird Feeder: I have been buying these little single flower feeders for years. Despite having some expensive feeders nearby, the little Hummers seem to go to these first. Best of all…they only cost $1.49 at FleetFarm.

Picaridin

Sawyer Products Premium Insect Repellent with 20% Picaridin:

I mentioned this product last year after seeing how well it repelled swarms of mosquitos. A couple of other readers tried it and wrote me with similar comments. So far, this works the best around here! Click Here! I noticed it was available at some Target stores, and if not, try the link to Amazon. I saw my first mosquito a couple of days ago, so be prepared!

 

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May 28, 2018 – Monday – Memorial Day

Pronghorn Buck

Pronghorn Buck in Wildflowers: This buck was standing near the highway as I headed north this morning. The Balsam Root flowers drew my attention. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Uinta Ground Squirrel

Uinta Ground Squirrels are usually seen in or near a hole in the soft dirt, but some climb onto bushes and sagebrush. They are a favorite target for Badgers, Hawks, Eagles, Coyotes, and Foxes. I spent part of my morning looking for Great Gray Owls, Foxes, and Badgers, but didn’t find any of them. I heard the Grizzlies had moved far north yesterday, so I didn’t check on them. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

When I returned home last evening, I counted at least 14 male Western Tanagers in my back yard. I spent part of the afternoon photographing them today since I know my time with them will be limited. A few of the Bullock’s Orioles are still around.

Female Black-headed Grosbeak

Female Black-headed GrosbeakNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Western Tanager

Western Tanager: It was a good day! Colorful Western Tanagers are hanging around. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Rufous Hummingbird

Rufous Hummingbird: Hopefully I will be able to get one of these nice looking hummers in flight before the summer is over. This is the first one I’ve seen this year. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Western Tanagers

Western Tanagers: Skirmishes like this are common, but seldom have lasting repercussions. Western Tanagers like oranges, but will also eat about any sweet fruit. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Western Tanager

Western TanagerNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

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May 27, 2018 – Sunday – Memorial Day Weekend

Moose in Balsom Root

Moose in Balsom Root: Taken near Moose Junction. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Pronghorns

Pronghorns: Captured at Elk Ranch Flats. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Badger

Badger: Seen at Elk Ranch Flats.Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Badger

BadgerNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

399 and Cub

399 and Cub: The trio created quite a bear jam, compounded by the Memorial Day traffic, near Leek’s Pizza entry. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Grizzly Sow 399

Grizzly Sow 399: This bear still has a tracking collar, which shows up when she is facing forward. The collar isn’t too visible when she is looking directly at you, or even slightly to the side.  Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Balsom Root

Balsom Root: Large patches of wildflowers are becoming more common. This was taken near the Climber’s Ranch on Teton Park Road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Purple Lupine

Purple Lupine: Taken near Dornan’s. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Bridge Closure: “Teton County Road & Levee advises that the Cattleman’s Bridge on Spring Gulch Rd is closed until further notice due to safety concerns. This closure applies to vehicles, pedestrians, bicycles, livestock, and public safety apparatus. Further assessments of the bridge for safety will be conducted this week, but until the inspections are completed and the bridge is deemed safe, it will remain closed to all traffic. There is no estimated time for reopening of Cattleman’s Bridge at this time.”

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May 26, 2018 – Saturday – Memorial Day Weekend

Featured Image

Check out this new Feature Post!: Old West Days Parade “in Detail” 

On Sunday, head to JH Cinema Twin to watch a “big screen” presentation of the classic movie “Shane”. Best of all, it is FREE. The movie starts at 2:00 PM.

Kelly Structures

Kelly Structures: I saw an ad in the newspaper about a large garage sale in Kelly this morning. I had enough time to get out there before the parade, and it gave me a chance to check out the Balsam Root wildflowers along the East Boundary Road. They are coming on strong in many areas, but not prime yet across the valley. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

White Flowers

White Flowers: These flowers were in a planter downtown. I liked the way the filtered light was hitting them. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

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May 25, 2018 – Friday – Memorial Day Weekend

Morning Sun

Morning Sun: Taken along the Moose-Wilson Road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron: Seen along the Moose-Wilson Road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Nursing Bison Calf

Nursing Bison Calf: One of many new “Red Dogs” near Elk Ranch Flats. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Grand Tetons

Grand Tetons: Taken from Elk Ranch Flats. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Bison Bull

Bison Bull: Also seen at Elk Ranch Flats. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

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May 24, 2018 – Thursday

Schwabacher Landing Notes!: The Snake River is flowing high and fast, and has now began flowing into the side channel that runs by the parking lots at Schwabacher Landing. The normal reflection pools in front of the north parking lot is now blown out with fast rushing water, and it is washing out the beaver dams in the southern portion. The reflection pools at the Beaver Pond a few hundred yards to the north should still be okay, but the large numbers of morning photographers will probably be huddling into a smaller area.

Memorial Day Weekend starts tomorrow. The town is already getting busy! Remember the Old West Days Parade at 10:00 am Saturday. Check the Chamber of Commerce site for other events and attractions.

Foggy Hillside

Morning Hillside: Low clouds and fog were pulling back from some of the trees near Snake River Overlook. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Morning Elk Herd

Morning Elk Herd: It’s a treat to see a herd of bull Elk— cow Elk are much more common. This was taken at Elk Ranch Flats. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld. 

Bison and Cowbirds

Soggy Bison and Cowbirds: Also taken near Elk Ranch Flats during an early morning drizzle. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Grizzly Cubs

Grizzly Cubs: These are two of 399’s Cubs taken near Pilgrim Creek Road. Pilgrim Creek Road, along with the Dump Road, are still closed.  Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

White Pelican

White Pelican: Taken below the Jackson Lake Dam. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

White Pelican

White PelicanNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

The 100 Yard Rule(s)

If you find yourself anywhere near the Grizzlies, you need to have already read this post.  Information on the page could save you a ticket since viewing rules in GTNP are different than Bear viewing in : Yellowstone.

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May 23, 2018 – Wednesday

Licking Coyote

Licking Coyote: I took this shot yesterday afternoon and processed it in Lightroom after making yesterday’s post. It made me think of another experience with a Coyote along the Teton Park Road near Signal Mountain. I had seen a Coyote hunting near the road and got out of the truck in hopes of getting photos. It wasn’t too spooky and it let me get some nice shots. Passing tourists saw me stalking around with a telephoto lens, stopped and got out of their vehicle. They walked right up to me and were talking loudly as they approached. The Coyote moved back, of course. They asked me what I was seeing. I told them I was photographing a Coyote. “A Coyote?” the loudest one said, “We see them all the time in Texas”. They left and the Coyote was nowhere to be seen.

I spotted and photographed the Badger I posted yesterday while waiting for a Coyote to continue hunting. Without stopping to photograph a “common” Coyote, I would have easily missed the chance to photograph the Badger. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

The 100 Yard Rule(s)

If you find yourself anywhere near the Grizzlies, you need to have already read this post.  Information on the page could save you a ticket since viewing rules in GTNP are different than Bear viewing in : Yellowstone.

Rain Soaked Great Gray Owl

Rain Soaked Great Gray Owl: Seen along the Moose-Wilson Road just before lunch time. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Rain Soaked Great Gray Owl

Rain Soaked Great Gray Owl: This owl was farther out than I would have liked, but since I haven’t seen one in quite a while, it made a good subject for today. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Western Tanager

Western Tanager: Since early May, my back yard has been turning more and more green each day. After photographing for what seems like an eternity with rusty brown backgrounds, the new buttery smooth green backdrop is a welcome sight. Western Tanagers will eventually move on north, but right now, I have a nice group of a dozen or so coming to oranges and orange suet I put out for them. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Broad-tailed Hummingbird

Broad-tailed Hummingbird: The overcast skies help light the male’s gorget. I shot this with natural light at ISO 2000 with a Nikon D5. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Young Cross Foxes

Young Cross Foxes: It’s baby fox time! Keep an eye out for them throughout the Park and JH area. This was taken with low light conditions: 1/160th second, F/6.3, ISO 2200.  Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

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May 22, 2018 – Tuesday

Black-headed Grosbeak

Black-headed Grosbeak: Birds migrate through my back yard during the Spring and early Sumer. I know the window lasts only a few weeks, so I try to capitalize on the opportunity each year. Today, there was a light haze, perfect for the bird shots. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Bullock's Oriole

Bullock’s OrioleNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Western Tanager

Western Tanager: The newspaper had a story suggesting many dinosaurs were likely feathered and colorful—more birdlike than lizard like. Check out this article in the JH News and Guide: Jurassic Park’ dinosaur expert’s next big thing: holograms.  Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Elk Ranch Flats

Elk Ranch Flats: I spent the late afternoon at Elk Ranch Flats. Roads are still muddy and there’s at least one ditch crossing I didn’t want to try. There were several herds of Elk mingling around. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Coyote

Coyote: It appeared this predator was hunting for Chislers. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Badger

Badger: Also hunting for Chislers. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

The Grand and Bison

The Grand and BisonNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Cowbird and Bison Bull

Cowbird and Bison BullNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Elk Ranch

Elk Ranch: A few of the remaining structures from the old Dude Ranch. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Ponghorn Buck

Ponghorn Buck: I’ve been intending on mentioning seeing Pronghorns back in the valley. I pulled over near the JH Airport for this shot, but have seen them in quite a few of the sagebrush zones. I could never get him to look my direction. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

 

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May 21, 2018 – Monday

Schwabacher Landing Pano

Schwabacher Landing Pano: Click this image to view it much larger. I was there early and took a lot of shots, but liked the later ones best. Nikon D850 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens.

Mormon Row Barn Pano

Mormon Row Barns PanoClick this image to view it much larger. The low cloud bank and moody clouds prompted me to return to a familiar subject. Nikon D850 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens.

Migrating Bison

Migrating Bison: Heading north along the east side of the park. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Bison Cow

Bison CowNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

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May 20, 2018 – Sunday

Schwabacher Landing Sunrise

Schwabacher Landing Sunrise: The  cloud above the Teton Range rolled in just as I arrived at Schwabacher Landing. With no wind, the reflection pools make for some nice photography. I looked for Moose cows with newborn calves there, but didn’t see any.  Nikon D850 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens.

Rim Lit Buck

Rim Lit Buck: Taken near Dornan’s at Moose Junction. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Rim Lit Buck

Rim Lit BuckNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Purple Lupines

Purple Lupines: This is the first clump of Purple Lupines I’ve seen this year, seen in the Moose Junction area. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Arrowleaf Balsom Root

Arrowleaf Balsom Root: Patches of Balsam Root are becoming much more common. Yesterday, I checked along the East Boundary Road. There are a few plants, but not clumped in large numbers yet. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Larkspur

Low Larkspur: This is the first of the Larkspur I’ve seen so far. My wife saw some Indian Paintbrush on the top of Snow King Mountain. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mallards

Mallards: Taken along Fish Creek Road near Wilson. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Paraglider

Paraglider: Paragliders are seen fairly often near Teton Village. Tandem rides are offered during the summer months. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

You REALLY need to read this page: The 100 Yard Rule(s)  Information on the page could save you a ticket—viewing rules in GTNP are different than in Yellowstone.

Note: Tourists coming out of Yellowstone’s South Entrance do not get GTNP rules and regulations or newspapers as they enter this park. I am not sure how the GTNP rangers are expecting this group to know the rules. There are no signs on the subject as you enter from the North.

 

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May 19, 2018 – Saturday

Elkfest

This is ElkFest Weekend: Antlers, gathered from the National Elk Refuge, are auctioned off on the east side of the Town Square, while antler vendors sell antlers, skulls, and horns along Center and Deloney streets. This was taken as people paused for the National Anthem. Nikon D5 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens.

ElkFest

ElkFestNikon D5 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens.

ElkFest

Calm in the Midst of CommotionNikon D5 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens.

ElkFesth

ElkFest TexturesNikon D5 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens.

Young Collectors

Young Collectors at ElkFestNikon D5 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens.

Mountain Man Rendezvous

 Mountain Man Rendezvous: Numerous traders have rendezvoused at the Fairgrounds for the week, with more to come during the week. This event continues until the end of the Memorial Day weekend. The Old West Days parade will be held Saturday morning. Nikon D5 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens.

Loose Ends: There is some construction going on a the Chapel of the Transfiguration. Don’t expect that to be a good shoot for a while. A white trailer was there. Crews recently removed another half mile of iconic buckrail fencing south of Triangle X Ranch.

 

Bullock's Oriole

Bullock’s Oriole: Things are turning green all around the valley now. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Western Tanager

Western TanagerNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

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May 18, 2018 – Friday

Black-headed Grosbeak

Black-headed Grosbeak: A recent arrival in my back yard. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

The Gros Ventre Road will be closed for up to five nights from Tuesday, May 29 through Saturday, June 2. The road will be closed between Gros Ventre Junction and Gros Ventre Campground from 6 p.m. to 5 a.m. each night. If rainy or poor conditions prevent grading and paving activities, the closure will be postponed to the following week. The closures will not affect traffic on U.S. Highway 89/26/191.

Spaulding Bay Road is open! I spent a few hours at a “Bear Jam” near Pilgrim Creek Road last evening. There were at least three Law Enforcement Officers in the area and easily that many Wildlife Brigade Volunteers telling people to move down, move across the road, get back in their cars, and generally protecting the huge gathering from the wildlife. It sometimes takes persevering through something I find unpleasant to get a few shots, but in general, I’d really rather be somewhere else. As the Spring season progresses towards the Summer season, I welcome any new road opening like the one to Spaulding Bay.. It’s a little rough in places, but you may find Bears, Deer, Elk, Owls, and many of the smaller critters taking advantage of the relatively quiet zone. There are three or four campsites near the lake, a boat launch , and restroom facilities.

Blondie and Cubs

Blondie and Cubs: A tight crop of a long distance shot, taken in the Colter Bay area as they moved from zone to zone. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Grizzly 399

Grizzly 399: Okay…you REALLY need to read this page: The 100 Yard Rule(s) – This one is too important to miss! I took this image from my window while parked on the side of the road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Park Rangers are EXPECTING all viewers and photographers to move back, EVEN WHILE IN YOUR VEHICLE, if a bear approaches within 100 yards.That means starting your engines and moving into the already congested travel lanes to “get away” from the bears.

Don’t expect this line to work: “I was parked 100 yards away initially and the bear approached me.”

100 Yards

100 Yards: I took this shot a couple of days ago while standing next to a Wildlife Brigade Volunteer.  He was using a rangefinder and telling us we were 99 yards from the bear. He was possibly a couple of yards in front of me. Unless I switch the same lens (Tamron 150-600mm G2) to a 1.5 crop body, this is the largest a Grizzly will fill a photo without cropping. I typically crop a lot of my images to save space on this journal page, but this photo should give you a good idea of what to expect. The other option would be to use my Nikon D850 (45.7 mpx) and crop a bit more. Some photographers are using a 1.5 crop body, a 1.5 teleconverter, with a 600mm prime lens. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Grizzly Crossing

Grizzly CrossingNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mother Moose

Mother Moose: The rules state you must stay back 25 yards from wildlife (200 yards from Bears and Wolves), but they also state you must stay far enough away to keep from stressing an animal. This was taken near Moose Junction at a distance of about 80-90 yards. I heard of another baby Moose on the trail to Taggart Lake. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Check out this post from May 19, 2017: Newborn Moose! It appears this one was right on “schedule”.

Trumpeter Swan

Trumpeter Swan: This is one of our resident Trumpeter Swans that have been hanging around along Flat Creek lately. They “should be” on their nests now and then appear with their babies in June. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Great Gray Owls: A few reliable sources are telling us that none of the known Great Gray Owls are on nests this year. They didn’t produce babies last year either. Biologists are baffled and alarmed by the situation.

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May 17, 2018 – Thursday

Fast Moving Storm

Fast Moving Storm: The initial entries for today are actually an extension of yesterday and last night. I drove north late in the day and began hearing thunder. I was hoping to get lightning over the Grand, but aimed where the action looked best. This was captured using a Lightning Trigger. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens, Tripod.

Mt. Moran

Mt. Moran: This dark and moody shot was taken at Snake River Overlook. I was sitting in my truck with a rain jacket covering most of the camera and lens. The equipment was on a tripod just outside the door.  Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens, Tripod.

Blondie and Cubs

Blondie and Cubs: When this sequence happened, onlookers and photographers were being held back 90-100 yards, and skies were dark. For the most part, watching bears is much like watching paint dry. Most of the time, they are feeding with their heads down. Especially during dark periods, I drop the shutter speed. In these photos, was shooting a 1/320th second, and wide open at F/6.3, and of course at 600mm. I would have liked to be at 1/1000sec or 1/1250sec and at least at F/7.1 or F/8 to help freeze the action a bit better, but my “grazing” settings did fairly well. Blondie and the cubs were near Leek’s Marina Junction last evening. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Pelican

Pelican: As I was driving over the Jackson Lake Dam, I noticed three Pelicans. I turned around to get a few shots. The Pelicans were glowing against the dark, clear water. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Night at String Lake

Night at String Lake: I took the Teton Park Road home from Jackson Lake Junction. It was already late, so I decided to stay out for some night time shots. This shot was taken just after the first few stars appeared. Nikon D5 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens F/2.8, Tripod.

Tree Line

Tree Line: The soft clouds in this photo were lit by the night sky pollution of the Town of Jackson and possibly a bit by the JH Airport lights. You’ll often notice a glow over the Tetons from the Victor/Driggs/Tetonia side of the mountain, but overall Jackson Hole has great dark skiesNikon D5 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens F/2.8, Tripod.

Night Trees

Night Trees: Also taken at String Lake. Yesterday, my alarm went off at 5:30 am and I didn’t return home until just before midnight. Instead of staying up all night processing images, I got some sleep and did last evenings photos and posts today. Nikon D5 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens F/2.8, Tripod.

Afternoon Images

399 and Cub

399 and Cub: Seen near Pilgrim Creek in the afternoon. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

399

399Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

399 and Cub

399 and Cub: 399 still has a collar, but I have been told it is not working anymore. Hopefully, it will fall off soon. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

White Pelican

White Pelican: Seen at the Jackson Lake Dam. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

 

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May 16, 2018 – Wednesday

Chipmonk

Chipmonk: Instead of going too far north again today (in search of Grizzlies), I stayed a little closer to home, and instead of trying to get shots of the big animals, I chose to work with some of the smaller subjects. This little critter was along the Moose-Wilson Road. I also photographed a Red-naped Sapsucker. I watched for Great Gray and Great Horned Owls but didn’t see them. A couple of Moose and even a Black Bear have been spotted there recently. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Goslings

Goslings: The little tikes were at Flat Creek Wetlands on the north edge of town. I was trying to get shots of a Marsh Wren, but again, he wasn’t too cooperative. I managed to get a few shots of a Red-winged Blackbird and a Yellow-headed Blackbird, along with lots of Goslings and adult Canada Geese. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Western Tanager

Western Tanager: My back yard is starting to glow with color. This is the first Tanager I’ve seen this year, but expect quite a few more over the next week. Other colorful birds include American Goldfinches, Buntings, and Orioles. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Lazuli Bunting

Lazuli Bunting: These are beautiful little birds. There are three or four males hanging around now, apparently waiting for the females and the rest of the migrants. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Bullock's Oriole

Bullock’s Oriole: More of these are showing up every day. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Mid-May Notes and Construction: Elkfest is this weekend on the Town Square. Mountain Men are setting up their tents at the Rodeo Grounds. They’ll be around until the end of Memorial Day. Memorial Day Weekend is the official kickoff for the summer season, which includes the Saturday parade and numerous other events. Each day, I see a few more wildflowers around the region. Expect delays of the Snake River Bridge near Wilson for a couple of days. The big construction project at the “Y” intersection is mostly completed, but there will be construction most of the summer at the bridge over the Snake south of town. Work continues on the Spring Gulch bridge over the Gros Ventre River. The delays at the Gros Ventre Junction roundabout have been minimal so far, but expect delays soon.

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May 15, 2018 – Tuesday

Arrowleaf Balsam Root Wildlfowers

Arrowleaf Balsam Root Wildlfowers: This isn’t a great photo, but it documents the first clump of these iconic early summer flowers I’ve seen this year. The gray in the background is Pacific Creek. I saw other clumps of Balsam Root along the Gros Ventre Road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Opening and Closing Dates for Grand Teton National Park

Facility First Open Day Last Open Day/Night

Roads and Pathways

Teton Park Road May 1 October 31
Moose-Wilson Road May 12 October 31
Signal Mountain Summit Road Mid-June, weather dependent October 31
Grassy Lake Road Mid-June, weather dependent Weather dependent
Two Ocean Road Mid-June, weather dependent Weather dependent
Paved Multi-Use Pathways Open

Visitor Centers & Ranger Stations

Craig Thomas Discovery & Visitor Center March 5 October 31
Colter Bay Visitor Center May 11 October 8
Jenny Lake Visitor Center May 18 September 23
Laurance S. Rockefeller Preserve Center June 2 September 23
Flagg Ranch Information Station June 4 September 3
Jenny Lake Ranger Station June 2 September 2

Campgrounds 

Gros Ventre (gtlc.com) May 4 October 13
Signal Mountain (signalmountainlodge.com) May 11 October 13
Jenny Lake (gtlc.com) May 4 September 29
Colter Bay (gtlc.com) May 24 September 29
Colter Bay RV Park (gtlc.com) May 10 October 6
Headwaters Campground (gtlc.com) June 1 September 29
Headwaters RV Park (gtlc.com) May 17 September 29
Lizard Creek (signalmountainlodge.com) June 15 September 2

Lodging

Signal Mountain Lodge (signalmountainlodge.com) May 11 October 13
Jackson Lake Lodge (gtlc.com) May 18 October 6
Colter Bay Cabins (gtlc.com) May 24 September 29
Triangle X Ranch (trianglex.com) May 22 October 7
Jenny Lake Lodge (gtlc.com) June 1 October 6
Headwaters Lodge at Flagg Ranch (gtlc.com) June 1 September 29

 

Night Clouds

Night Clouds: Technically, this is a Monday shot, but I just processed it today. I took it from Mormon Row Road. Nikon D5 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens, Tripod.

Light Painters

Light Painters: There were a couple of photographers doing light painting at the TA Moulton Barn last night. They were using an extremely bright, cold colored light.

Homestead

Homestead:  Nikon D5 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens, Tripod.

Raven Portrait

Raven Portrait: I found this bird sitting on a dumpster near the north end of the Park. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Raven

Raven: Same bird in a natural setting. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Reflections

Reflections: I spent most of my morning looking for Grizzlies, but filled in some of the time taking other images that interested me. Seen at a pond near Leek’s Marina. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Tree Textures

Tree TexturesNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

 

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May 14, 2018 – Monday

Road Notes: Now Open: RKO Road, Bar-BC Road, Cattleman’s Bridge dirt road, Turpin Meadows Road. Many of the other side roads are still closed.

Moose-Wilson Road

Speaking of Roads…The Moose-Wilson Road recently reopened after crews added some drainage tubes. When you go there, expect to see these parking barriers spread along much of the roadway. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Moose-Wilson Parking

Moose-Wilson Parking: Over a span of .8 miles from the Sawmill Pond Overlook and south past the Moose Pond, expect to find a grand total of 5 parking spots—that’s if four people politely park in the one pullout. Rangers often take one or two of those during the Fall Black Bear seasonNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Lake Creek

Lake Creek: Taken quickly out the window from the one way bridge on the Moose-Wilson road. Lake Creek flows from Phelps Lake to the Laurance S. Rockefeller Preserve. It is clear, while most other streams are rushing with muddy water. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Robin

Robin: This bird struck a nice pose against the blue sky as I was walking around and taking parking barricades on the Moose-Wilson Road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Bull Elk

Bull Elk: If you are up early enough, you might get a glimpse of the bulls. They move back into the forests not long after first light or after they see their first humans of the day. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Sandhill Crane

Sandhill Crane: I had to stop for this shot near the Jackson Lake Junction. There are lots of Sandhills in the valley right now, but most of them stay well off the road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Blondie and Cubs

Blondie and Cubs: I would have liked to bring home a card full of wonderfully expressive photos of the Grizzlies, but opportunities were extremely limited while I was in the Leek’s Marina area. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Blondie

Blondie: The trio spent most of their time deep in the shadows and thick underbrush, and when they were visible, kept their heads down feeding. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Teton Range

Teton Range: This stitched pano was taken in mid-day light from Togwotee Pass. A Grizzly sow has been sighted a times on the pass. Instead of waiting with the growing crowds inside GTNP, I decided to take my chances away from the rangers and tourists. It did’t work out for me today, but I have no regrets. There is still a lot of snow on Togwotee Pass, if you want to experience Spring down below and remnants of Winter in the high country. Note: The road to the restrooms and observation area east of Togwotee Lodge is still snowed in.  Nikon D850 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

 

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May 13, 2018 – Sunday  – Mother’s Day

Bull Elk in Early Velvet

Bull Elk in Early Velvet: This nice bull was posing alongside the road near Oxbow Bend.

Coyote

Coyote: Seen near Signal Mountain.

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle: Seen along Spring Gulch Road. The female is in a nearby nest.

Today: We had thick fog and low clouds early in the morning. I managed to get quite a few very nice landscapes while on the East side of the park. I suspect  the people that went to the river bottoms, such as Schwabacher Landing had a long morning of staring at a soupy white cloud.

TA Moulton Barn

T.A. Moulton Barn: Mystical low clouds and fog completely changed the mood along Mormon Row.

Bison and Morning Clouds

Bison and Morning Clouds: Taken along Antelope Flats Road.

Peach House

Peach House: On Mormon Row.

Cottonwoods

Cottonwoods: Taken along Mormon Row.

New Aspens

New Aspens: Taken along Spring Gulch Road in the early evening. Fresh Aspen leaves are vivid pea green right now and seem to glow when shafts of light hit them.

Sleeping Indian

Sleeping Indian: Taken from the observation platform along Flat Creek.

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May 12, 2018 – Saturday

Road Update: The Moose-Wilson Road opened this afternoon.

Snake River Overlook

Snake River Overlook: A couple of days ago, I had an afternoon Photo Tour. The trip started at 1:00pm after an hour lunch. Most of my tours begin well before sunrise to get the colorful morning light and wildlife on the move, but an afternoon trip was my client’s only option. We made it to Snake River Overlook at around 5:00pm with what I would call “unromantic light”. Still, it had some interesting clouds. I took this handheld shot with a Nikon D850, which is what the client was using. Other than the crop, the photo above is “as shot”. The shot was captured with the histogram was “to the right”, but nothing was overexposed or blown out

Snake River Overlook

Snake River Overlook: Out of curiosity, I processed the image as a black and white. The otherwise bland shot transformed into something I didn’t really expect.

Ansel Adams 1942 Snake River Overlook

Ansel Adam’s Snake River Overlook: My B&W image above shares at least some of the characteristics of Adam’s famous 1942 photo—but there are a few differences. We, unfortunately, have to deal with 76 years of tree growth that blocks the bend in the river. Ansel probably labored for days to process his original film image. I labored around 5 minutes in Lightroom!

Snake River Overlook

For more information, maps, and additional photos, check out this earlier Feature Post!

Northern Flicker

Northern Flicker: Female captured in my back yard. Overcast days, even with rain or snow, always make good photo days for the birds. The trick is to aim in directions where there is no white sky. Nikon D850 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Northern Flicker

Northern FlickerNikon D850 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

White-crowned Sparrow

White-crowned SparrowNikon D850 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

White-crowned Sparrow

White-crowned Sparrow: The sparrow was dining away on a sunflower seed when a pushy Cassin’s Finch tried to take over the branch. Nikon D850 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Black-billed Magpie

Black-billed Magpie: This is an extremely difficult bird to photograph on a sunny day! Nikon D850 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Black-billed Magpie

Black-billed MagpieNikon D850 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

 

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May 11, 2018 – Friday

Blondie

Blondie: Seen in the Pilgrim Creek area this morning. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

The South Entrance to Yellowstone opened this morning, which causes much more traffic along the main roadways. Many of the side roads are still barricaded.

Blondie

BlondieNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

Grizzly Cub

Grizzly Cub: Blondie’s cubs are quite a bit smaller than 399’s cubs, born the same year. 610 should appear with a few cubs of the year, but I don’t have any reports of anyone seeing her yet. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

Grizzly Cub

Grizzly CubNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

American Bison

American Bison: One of half a dozen bulls seen at Gros Ventre Junction. Nikon D850 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

American Goldfinch

American Goldfinch: This male is still morphing into its breeding plumage. I have three males in my back yard now. Nikon D850 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

Additional Back Yard Birds: Brown-headed Cowbirds and Brewer’s Blackbirds are becoming common. Still lots of Juncos and Cassin’s Finches. I saw and heard my first Black-headed Grosbeak today, too.

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May 10, 2018 – Thursday

Sandhill Cranes

Sandhill Cranes: Seen at Elk Flats after a morning of looking for bears. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

Lazuli Bunting

Lazuli Bunting: Back at home, I managed to capture a few of the incoming songbirds. Some of the feathers on the head of this male are still turning blue. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

American Goldfinch

American Goldfinch: I saw several males today. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

Green-tailed Towhee

Green-tailed Towhee: This is an elusive little bird, preferring the ground cover. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

Dark-eyed Junco

Dark-eyed Junco: I included this image to show the green leaves. Juncos have been around for a couple of months. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

Robin

American Robin: Robins are in full breeding color now. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

Bullock's Oriole

The first Bullock’s Oriole made an appearance today. I also heard my first Hummingbird. Things are picking up! Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

Blondie and Cubs

Blondie and Cubs: After getting skunked earlier today, I went back for another try. These bears were near Pilgrim Creek. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

Blondie and Cubs

Blondie and CubsNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

Blondie and Cubs

Blondie and CubsNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

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May 9, 2018 – Wednesday

Sleeping Indian

Sleeping Indian: Taken from the observation platform along Flat Creek. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens.

Chambers Homestead Pano

Chambers Homestead Pano: Taken along Mormon Row as a four shot pano, then stitched in Lightroom. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens.

Red-winged Blackbird

Red-winged Blackbird: Captured at the Visitor’s Center. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

Canada Geese

Canada Geese: Seen at Flat Creek Wetlands on North Cache. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

Gosling

Gosling: There is a lot of green now around town and even on some of the hillsides. Spring is definitely showing! Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

Back Yard Birding: Yesterday, I was fairly certain I saw a Lazuli Bunting. Today, I definitely saw one. Pine Siskens are back, along with a couple of Yellow-rumped Warblers. I am anticipating seeing a few Bullock’s Orioles very soon and Western Tanagers a bit later.

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May 8, 2018 – Tuesday

Sunset

Sunset: The weather reports called for clear skies last night, but instead, we had plenty of clouds. I had planned on going out for the stars, so I left home just as the sun was beginning to set. That worked in my favor for the splendid sunset we received as a result of the “pesky” evening clouds. It’s fairly easy to change gears when the sky starts turning orange! I processed this one before going to bed, but didn’t post it. It’s 5:15am here right now, and I’m heading out for a morning shoot. I missed this morning’s clear sky, star show (the clouds eventually moved on through), so I am not in a huge hurry to rush out the door.

The South Entrance to Yellowstone opens tomorrow morning at 8:00 am. That’s good news if you want to go to Yellowstone, but with the roads opened, more people are traveling through GTNP. Any bear seen near the main roads will cause bigger and quicker bear jams. Right now, most people in the park are regional photographers and are usually respectful of the viewing distances, but the new crop will be less informed and usually well under equipped or bear and wolf photography. The ranger’s usually become less tolerant with the offenders and more strict with the rules as the crowds build throughout the season.

Baby Bison

Baby Bison: This morning was another one with lots of possibilities, yet things just didn’t pan out as I would have hoped. I found a small herd of Bison in the early morning light, but they were moving away from me. The herd had one baby as seen above. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

Black Bear

Black Bear: Photography is a lot like fly fishing. If you had a good day one day, you can hardly stand to stay home the next day. None of the Grizzlies were seen (that I know of anyway), but this beautiful Black Bear made an appearance. I killed about an hour hoping it would get closer, or even in the open, but it stayed back and usually behind small shrubs and branches. This one was near Pilgrim Creek Road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

Finding Bears in Grand Teton National Park : This post from a few years back might help you understand which zones to cruise at various times of the year.

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron: This Heron often hangs out at Oxbow Bend and is generally more tolerant of humans than some around here. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

Roads Still Closed as May 8 : Signal Mountain Road to the top, Spaulding Bay Road, Cattleman’s Bridge Road, Pilgrim Creek Road, Grassy Lake Road, Two Ocean Lake Road, Forest Service Road from Pacific Creek Road, RKO Road, BarBC Road, along with both two track roads off the East Boundary Road.  The roads have barricades, but I am fairly certain it is still legal to walk down them.

Cowboy Bar Sign

Cowboy Bar Sign: The owners of the Wort Hotel bought the Million Dollar Cowboy Bar a while back and have been doing some facelift work on the wood work and history old sign. The Cowboy and horse portion of the sign has been gone for a few weeks and now has a glossy new paint job. The crew is adding a rotating device for him, which could make for some interesting photos. Also, the old Jackson Drug is being renovated. From what I heard, the old neon sign was in storage in the basement during the years when the building was used for a rug gallery. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens.

 

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May 7, 2018 – Monday

Big Dipper

Big Dipper: This was stitched using three vertical captures in order to include the Big Dipper (over Mt. Moran). I took this shot 4:35 am, during the morning “blue light period” between 4:10 and 6:10 am. Nikon D5 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens, Tripod.

Stars over TA Moulton Barn

Stars over TA Moulton Barn: The moon had about 1/4 coverage this morning…just enough to light the mountains.  Nikon D5 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens, Tripod.

Teton Range Reflectiuons

Teton Range Reflections: Four shot pano. Early morning at the Jackson Lake Dam. Nikon D5 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens, Handheld.

Eagle on Ice

Eagle on Ice: I took this shot at the Leek’s Marina boat launch.  Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

Eagle ih Tree

Eagle in Tree: This photo was taken at ISO 25600. It was handheld at 1/1600th second, F/7.1 with a Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens.

Eagle In Tree

Eagle In Tree: This one was taken at ISO 6400. It was handheld at 1/400th second, F/7.1 with a Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens. 

Grizzly 399 and One Cub

Grizzly 399 and One Cub: This is my first time to see 399 and her cubs this year. I captured quite a few shots with all three in the same frame, but each time, at least one had their head down.  Nikon D500 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Fence Crossing

Fence Crossing:  Today, the family was near “the Dump Road”.  Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Tripod.

Coyote

Coyote: It’s not often that a Coyote doesn’t look back at someone in a vehicle. This one never glanced way!  Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

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May 6, 2018 – Sunday

Bison Bull

Bison Bull: Seen near Elk Flats Ranch. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Osprey Landing

Osprey Landing: This male brought in a trout, then the female returned for a meal. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

TA Moulton Barn

TA Moulton BarnNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

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May 5, 2018 – Cinco de Mayo

Old Patriarch Tree

Old Patriarch Tree: I hiked out to the Old Patriarch Tree very early this morning. It was’t bad…the snow was frozen solid enough well enough to let me walk across it. Nikon D850 and Nikon 24-70 Lens, Tripod.

Old Patriarch Tree

Old Patriarch Tree: You might enjoy seeing this old post: May Day at the Old Patriarch. It has photos taken on May 1st (or within a few days of the 1st since 2008). You can see how the snow pack compares this year to some of the other years. I went to the area on May 1st this year, but the clouds were completely covering the Tetons as seen in the May 1st entry for this page.  Amazing!!!!!! Nikon D850 and Nikon 24-70 Lens, Tripod.

Bison on the Run

Bison Crossing: Just up the road, there were several groups of tourists trying to take photos of specks (bison) at long distances. It makes sense if you figure they were the first ones they saw, but if they had driven another mile, bison were close on both sides of the road and even on the road. I was probably in the photo being taken with an iPhone from inside the car. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Bison on the Run: This group of Bison, along with a few Elk, were at Elk Ranch Flats. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Osprey__

Osprey: I took this image near the Snake River. Most pairs have now staked out their nests, but this female didn’t appear to be sitting on eggs yet. The burned edges were done in Topaz Studio. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Road Closures: If you scroll down to the May 1st entry, I included a list of the recently opened and still closed roads in GTNP. From all I have seen, they are all the same now.

399 and her two cubs appeared in the Dam and Willow Flats area yesterday, prompting a news story in the daily paper.

 

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May 4, 2018 – Friday

Backing Up! Last week, I bought a G-Tech Shuttle 24TB RAID drive for my images, files, and catalogs. Then, after feeling like I am putting all of my eggs in one basket, I ordered a G-Tech RAID drive to backup or mirror that one. It arrived just now, and the files are being copied to it. The 24 TB drive has an effective yield of 18 TB, so the 20 TB drive should hold all of the information. That’s one story. I have been told it would be a good idea to store at least one copy of my images off premise, or on the “cloud”. A few days ago, I signed up for Amazon Prime to get unlimited photo storage. It has a huge caveat. After 64 hours, it has uploaded .14 TB of 3.25 TB in just my Wildlife Folders. I also have a Landscapes Folder, Trips Folder, WildWest Folder, and Grunge Folder. At this rate, it will take over 46 days to upload the Wildlife Folder. Unless I can get access to a fiber optic line to upload, I don’t see this as a viable option for anyone with lots of images.

Morning Elk

Morning Elk: Captured just North of Kelly. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Pine Marten

Pine Marten: Captured in low light conditions near Moose Visitor’s Center. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mt. Moran

Mt. Moran: Taken at Schwabacher Landing. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Common Merganser

Common Merganser: Also taken at Schwabacher Landing. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Canada Goose

Canada Goose: There can be a lot of bird and wildlife activity at Schwabacher Landing. Today was a waterfowl day. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

South Park Cabin

South Park Cabin: This old cabin is on the nature walk at the South Park Feed Grounds. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Barrow's Golden Eye

Barrow’s Golden Eye: Captured in the South Park Feed Grounds. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

 

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May 3, 2018 – Thursday

Jackson Lake Dam

Jackson Lake Dam: I spent my morning around Jackson Lake Junction, mainly hoping for a chance to photograph a Grizzly or two. While driving around the zone, I caught a few other subjects. I thought the golden light made the dam look moody, especially when accompanied by the snow covered mountains. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Townsend's Solitaire

Townsend’s Solitaire: This gray colored bird was resting near the dam, along with a pesky and elusive Belted Kingfisher. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Oxbow Bend and Clouds

Oxbow Bend and Clouds:  I didn’t see any Bears or Foxes, despite a fair amount of time and energy looking for them this morning. When I returned home, I heard a report of 399 and her two cubs milling around up north. Elk and Bison were plentiful in the Elk Flats area. Nikon D850 and Nikon 24-70 Lens, Handheld.

Early Aspens Leaves

Early Aspen Leaves: At least a few Aspens are displaying their first Summer leaves now.  Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

 

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May 2, 2018 – Wednesday

Mormon Row Elk

Mormon Row Elk: The road connecting the Mormon homesteads and Gros Ventre Road is still gated. I took this shot looking South at the north gate. There is a LOT of wildlife still out in the hay fields, including coyotes, bison, and elk. I am watching for Long-billed Curlews to show up again. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

This Morning: I did a fairly large figure 8 this morning, starting on a loop south of town. I saw a few more Osprey than last time I was there. The South Park Feed Grounds are open again. I drove up Spring Gulch Road, out to Kelly, and then looped around to the Mormon Row barns.

Uinta Ground Squirrel

Uinta Ground Squirrel: Chislers have been out of their dens for a while now, and that brings in the Raptors and Badgers that feed on them. I’ve been seeing a lot of Badger diggings at the barns, so I stopped there today with the Tamron 150-600mm G2 to see if any were out. You might be more lucky than me today. Watch for Red-tailed Hawks, Swainson’s Hawks, and Great Horned Owls in the barn areas. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Yesterday was the first of May. I loaded the May 1st entry with a LOT of focused information on Road Closures, Landscape Opportunities, and Wildlife Status. If you visited yesterday and only looked at the photos, I’d suggest taking a few minutes to read the reports.

Peach House Window

Peach House Window: There weren’t a lot of clouds over and around the Tetons today. This shot hints there are mountains in the distance, but the subject was really the deteriorating window. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Additional Reports: The rivers and streams are now flowing high and fast with silted, blown out water. Fishermen are now looking for lakes and spring creeks or heading to tailwater areas like the Green River below Flaming Gorge Reservoir. The newspaper reported a Grizzly feeding on a Bison carcass on the north end of the National Elk Refuge. As of yesterday, it is possible to drive into some of the Refuge. Watch for Burrowing Owls in the sandy soil if you drive out. I haven’t seen them, but I know people who have. The Gros Ventre Campground opens again this Friday.

Jackson Peak

Jackson Peak: I included this photo today to show how yesterday morning’s snowfall has already melted. It was taken from the Mormon Row Road junction along Antelope Flats Road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Afternoon in the Park

Jackson Peak Pano

Jackson Peak Pano: Captured as two photos and stitched in Lightroom. I took this from Gros Ventre Road. Nikon D500 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Bison Bull

Bison Bull: One of about a dozen nice bulls hanging around the roundabout construction zone on Gros Ventre Road. Nikon D500 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Sleeping Indian

Sleeping Indian: Taken from the observation platform on Flat Creek.

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May 1, 2018 – Tuesday  – Mayday!

Grand Teton National Park is in the process of welcoming this year’s visitors—but it happens slowly! Many roads are still closed, but one of the major arteries, the Teton Park Road (aka Inner Park Loop Road) opened to vehicle traffic today. Moose-Wilson road between the Murie Center Road and Death Canyon Road will be closed to all users until May 13. Expect construction delays at Gros Ventre Junction all summer. The road to Curtis Canyon opened today, allowing antler hunters to access the National Forest.

Closed Roads as May 1 : Signal Mountain Road to the top, Spaulding Bay Road, Cattleman’s Bridge Road, Pilgrim Creek Road, Grassy Lake Road, Two Ocean Lake Road, Forest Service Road from Pacific Creek Road, RKO Road, BarBC Road, along with both two track roads off the East Boundary Road.

Recently Opened Roads: Schwabacher Landing, Dead Man’s Bar, Lost Creek Ranch Road, Teton Park Road, Antelope Flats Road, Northern portion of Mormon Row Road. The Murie Center Road is still open.

Recently Opened Facilities: The Visitor’s Center at Moose has been open for a month or so. The Convenience Store at Colter Bay Junction and the Convenience Store and Pizza Parlor at Dornan’s are open. Other commercial centers should open for the Mother’s Day Weekend.

Bison In Snow

Wildlife Opportunities for May 1: Most of the Elk and Bison have moved off the National Elk Refuge and have spreading out into the Park and Forests. Moose are moving from their wintering home on the Sage Flats into the river bottoms. A few Pronghorns are back in the Park. Grizzlies and Black Bears are reappearing, but April was much less productive this year than last year. May could be epic if Sows like Blondie, 610, and Falicia appear with two or three cubs each. 399 and her two cubs appeared for a day but hasn’t been seen in a while. 610’s sub-adult cubs have been seen off and on. Other random Grizzlies have been seen on sporadic timelines. A large Cinnamon colored Black Bear has been seen a couple of times. Wolves and Foxes were active for a couple of weeks in April, but it appears the females are in the dens. The valley is now loaded with Robins, Juncos, Starlings, Ravens, Crows, & Magpies. Osprey are on their nests. Hawks, Kestrels and Eagles are often visible. Owls are scarce but are reported to be mating and nesting this year after a terrible year last year. A few of the Bison cows have already delivered their young, often called Red Dogs. Throughout the month, watch for other babies. Moose calves are usually born at the end of May and the first week or so in June.

String Lake

String LakeNikon D850 and Nikon 24-70 Lens, Handheld.

The Landscape for May 1: We had a nice snowfall at the end of April, changing much of the area back to Winter for a few days. Rain and drizzle melted the snow around town. Grass is turning green in most areas in the south portion of the valley. Areas closer to the mountains like String Lake and Jenny Lake are still snow covered. The Northern portion of the Park has snow for now. Togwotee Pass was clearing for the first few miles from the base, but is covered from around Turpen Meadows Road to the summit. Jackson Lake is open the size of a football field at the dam, but is still frozen. It should drop soon. String Lake is about half open, but everything I could see of Jenny Lake is still frozen.

Jenny Lake

 Jenny LakeNikon D850 and Nikon 24-70 Lens, Handheld.

Horses in Snow

Buffalo ValleyNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Elk Group

Buffalo ValleyNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Buffalo Valley Barn

Buffalo Valley Barn: Expect hillsides like this to be green within a few days. The recent snow was heavy and wet. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Cinnamon Teal Pair

Cinnamon Teal Pair: The Park offers a lot of wildlife possibilities, but it helps to not get too bogged down looking for a specific subject to show up. This pair of ducks was in courtship mode near the Jackson Lake Dam. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Cinnamon Teal

Cinnamon TealNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mountain Bluebird

Mountain Bluebird: Captured near the Jackson Lake Dam. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mountain Bluebird

Mountain BluebirdNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 G2 Lens, Handheld.

While I posted a lot of images for this initial Journal Page, you’ll want to make Best of the Tetons a regular stop. I’ll be adding photos almost daily throughout the month! The first week or so of May should resemble the last week or so of April, so check it out:

April 2018 Daily Journal for JH & GTNP

If you like what you are seeing here, please share the page and let your friends know about it. If you are not already a subscriber, I’d love to have you! MJ


 

10 Tips for a Grand Teton National Park Visit

Tips for a better visit from a 31 year resident and local photographer.

Sparring Moose

1: Do some pre-trip planning!

  • The good news…Grand Teton National Park is open all year! Summer visitors have access to most roads and facilities. It’s beautiful here all Winter, but you’ll find fewer roads and access.
  • Grand Teton National Park is home to many species of wildlife, however you might need to time your visit based on what you are hoping to see. For example, bull Moose will not have antlers from late January through mid-August. Many mammals will be shedding winter fur during the Spring months, but those months are the best months for the babies. Remember, some of the wildlife migrates out of the region while others hibernate during the Winter months.
  • Weather can be an issue at any time of the year. It helps to bring warm clothing at all times of the year. Temperatures can drop to below freezing overnight, even in the summer, yet warm up to comfortable temperatures by afternoon. We have experienced heavy snow on July 4th!
  • You’ll know you are in Grand Teton National Park via a few entrance signs, however much of the Park lacks clear signage  identifying its boundaries. This is especially true on the East side of the park. Pick up a Park map as soon as you can, or visit click the link below to view the official Park map. Note: Visitors entering GTNP via Yellowstone pass through a gate a Moran Junction, then enter the highway. Many believe they are out of the Park, yet they are still well within Park’s boundaries. Check the maps before letting your dog off its leash or considering using a drone anywhere in the Jackson Hole area!
  • Wildlife viewing rules state that humans must stay 100 yards from bears and wolves, and 25 yards from other wildlife. Visitors must follow the instructions of on-site rangers and volunteers, even if they are are more strict than printed rules and documentation.
  • Click Here to view the GTNP Map
  • 18-12 Changes to Entrance Fee to Address Infrastructure Needs & Improve Visitor Experience.pdf
  • Check the Daily Journals in the list below to help plan your trip:
Daily Updates Archives: ~
2018: June: | May:Apr: | Mar: | Feb: | Jan:
2017: Dec: | Nov: | Oct: | Sept: | Aug: | July: | June: | May: | Apr: | Mar: | Feb: | Jan:
2016: Dec: | Nov: | Oct: | Sept: | Aug: | July: | June: | May: | Apr: | Mar: | Feb: | Jan: 
2015: Dec: | Nov: | Oct: | Sept: | Aug: | July: | June: | May: | Apr: | Mar: | Feb: | Jan:
2014: Dec: | Nov: | Oct: | Sept: | Aug: | July: | June: | May: | Apr: | Mar: | Feb: | Jan:
2013: Dec: | Nov: Oct: | Sept: | Aug:

Alsenglow

2: Get up early for the most elbow room, best light, and most wildlife!

  • The Teton Range runs north and south along the west side of the valley. Landscape photography is often best early in the morning as the range wakes up with spectacular morning light.
  • Wind is often calm during the early morning hours. Be out early to have your best chances of getting mirror reflections in still or slow moving water.
  • If you are willing to get up EARLY, you’ll miss the bulk of the crowds. During peak times of the year, you can expect long delays getting through the gates. How early is early? Early means being somewhere of interest as the first rays of light clears the top of the eastern mountains. In mid-June, that’s around 5:41 am.
  • Wildlife, especially moose, deer, and elk, are usually most visible in the early hours. Moose can bed down in the sage or pull back into the river bottoms not long after first light. Deer and elk move out of the open and back into the shadows of the forest. Other large mammals, like Bison and Pronghorns, are often visible during the bright hours. Bears can be visible during random daylight hours.
  • The Jenny Lake’s Visitor Center area will continue to be under construction in 2018. Unless you get there very early, expect full parking areas there and at String Lake. If the ferry is running between Jenny Lake and Cascade Canyon this year, be there for the first ferry and take advantage of the discounted “early bird” first run and be one of the first to hit the trails to Inspiration Point and Hidden Falls.