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Best of the Tetons

Sunrise at Schwabacher Landing

July 2016 Daily Journal for GTNP & JH

Wildlife will be most active early and late. Expect warm temperatures, lots of green, and possible dramatic thunderstorms. ” 

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Monthly Overviews for JH / GTNP .

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Modified Feature Post: If I Had Only One Day in the Tetons.  This post was originally written three years ago and it has traditionally been the most popular page on the site. I’ve been rewriting it for the past couple of weeks to guide people through the park and see most of the Park’s most popular locations.

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July 31, 2016 > Sunday and End of the Month!

Golden Moose

Golden Moose: This youngster was feeding in fresh willows along the Gros Ventre River. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Moulton Barn

Moulton Barn: I liked the moody feel of this spot this morning. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Lone Bison Bull

Lone Bison Bull: This big bull was grazing on bitter brush not far off of Antelope Flats Road during the morning light. I looked for, but never found the large herd. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Fair Composite

iPhoneRainbowFair Composite: I went to a party last evening. Storm clouds, wind and lightning were rolling through the valley during the party. I had all of my gear in the van, but it had been moved to a distant parking area by the valets. I took this shot of the rainbow and flag using my iPhone. (It would probably do a better job, but I have a Life-Lock case on it to protect it from getting wet. The case covers the camera port with another layer of cheap plastic, and the orifice is usually covered with dirt and gunk)

When I made it home, I grabbed my gear and made my way to the Teton County Fair. I set up and attached my Lightning Trigger, but never had a big bolt in the scene. Unfortunately, the storm grounded the Vertigo ride so I didn’t get to include the spinning lights at the top of the spire.

Teton Photo Excursions. I offer LICENSED One-On-One Photography Excursions in Grand Teton National Park, with emphasis on helping clients with their camera and gear. Each trip is customized based on client needs and requests. (Note: It says One-On-One, but I take two people on a trip for the same price). We find some of the best locations for scenic photography, and look for wildlife in the process.  Now’s a great time to book a six to eight hour One-On-One Photography Excursion with me for August and early September!  Check out some of the Client Comments.

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July 30, 2016 > Saturday

Sunrise

Golden Sunrise: Sun behind one of the cottonwood trees along Mormon Row. Nikon D5 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Moulton Barn

Moulton Barn: This was taken only a few minutes after the sun shot above. The filtered gold light bathes the landscape. Nikon D5 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle: This adult was perched atop a Lodgepole Pine tree at Cattleman’s Bridge. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Eagle in Flight

Eagle in Flight: Same Eagle a few minutes later. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Mule Deer Doe

Mule Deer Doe: Taken near Leak’s Marina. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Arizona Meadows

Arizona Meadows: This might be technically called Kamas Meadow, located just to the North of Arizona Creek. Native Americans harvested bulbs from the meadow in the Spring. They made flour out of the bulbs. Plants with the purple flowers are edible, while similar bulbs in the area without the purple flowers are poisonous.  Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Tall Grass

Tall Grass: Also captured at the meadows. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

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July 29, 2016

Sunrise

Sunrise: Haze and smoke over Shadow Mountain.  Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

Windmill

Windmill: Taken along Mormon Row. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

Smoky Ridges

Smoky Ridges: Also captured from Mormon Row…looking East. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Tetons

Tetons: A different look at a familiar location. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

Pronghorns

Pronghorns: Smoky hillside backdrop for a small herd of Pronghorns. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Wildlife Comments: There were a couple of moose visible along the Gros Ventre early in the morning. Bison were near the Mormon Row Barns. A large group of Pronghorns were in the hay fields near Kelly. I saw the two adult Trumpeter Swans with their two Cygnets along Flat Creek, along with a couple of Cedar Waxwings feeding on berries near the fences.

Berries

Berries: One of several berry bushes along Flat Creek on the North edge of Jackson. Cedar Waxwings and Robins are feeding on some of them. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Teton County Fair

Teton County Fair 2016: In case you missed it, I created a new Feature Post with quite a few photos on the first night of the rides and midway at the Teton County Fair. I went back for a couple of hours last night and will be adding quite a few more photos to the page today. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Poop

Haulin’ the Poop: At lunch time, I made a quick trip to the Teton County Fair. I checked out the Fair Building, then headed to the 4H Barn. Nikon D5 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Aces and Spades

Aces and Spades: Two young ladies caressing their sheep before today’s afternoon auction. Nikon D5 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Doc EZee and Disco

Ole Doc EZee and Disco’s Magic Show: Under the “big top”, Doc EZee was busy entertaining the kids. Area kloggers were next, followed by the kid’s talent show. Nikon D5 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Teton Photo Excursions. I offer LICENSED One-On-One Photography Excursions in Grand Teton National Park, with emphasis on helping clients with their camera and gear. Each trip is customized based on client needs and requests. (Note: It says One-On-One, but I take two people on a trip for the same price). We find some of the best locations for scenic photography, and look for wildlife in the process.  Now’s a great time to book a six to eight hour One-On-One Photography Excursion with me for July, August and September!  Check out some of the Client Comments.

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July 28, 2016

Vertigo at Sunset

Vertigo at Sunset: Smoke from not that distant fires give us unique skies at sunrise and sunset. I went to the Teton County Fair last evening for a few shots. Nikon D5 and Nikon 70-180 mm micro lens.

Fair Pano

Fair Pano: I took this one as I was walking back to the van. On another evening, I’ll take a similar shot during the “blue light” period, and try to time the shots when several of the rides are active. This was actually a two shot, stitched pano, using Lightroom to do the stitching. Nikon D5 and Nikon 70-180 mm micro lens.

Pharoah

Pharoah’s Revenge: I spend a lot of time during the year taking photos of green grass, blue skies, and yellow flowers—then end up trying to make them look that way in the final images. At the fair, I find it liberating to be able to push, shove, and twist reality. Nikon D5 and Nikon 70-180 mm micro lens.

Dizzy Bears

Dizzy Dragons: I also like the “unpredictability” and happy accidents. At 1.6 seconds, the kid’s dragon ride move through the scene, but still allow echos of people and shapes behind them. At the time, the dragons were solid shapes. Nikon D5 and Nikon 70-180 mm micro lens.

Green Light

Green Light: There are thousands of faceted plastic covered LED lights at the fair. I found one close to eye level, then set up my tripod at about 8″ from the front of the lens and took a few close-up shots. Nikon D5 and Nikon 70-180 mm micro lens.

Fair Notes: The Teton County Fair is free to attend. The rides cost money of course, and several of the big events require a paid ticket. Otherwise, you can mill around the buildings, petting zoo, and so forth for free. And, you can carry in a tripod to this fair! This year, Frazier Shows returned with a newer, and bigger Ferris Wheel. One of the lighted rails was off last night, but the manager told me they’d have it back on tonight and for the rest of the fair. The Merry-Go-Round is missing. That’s a fair bummer, but the manager told me it should be back next year with a new paint job and working lights. The layout for the fair rides is pretty good this year, but there are two large generators with large spotlights at the ends. The west one spills light into the night sky when trying to photograph Vertigo and some of the other west end rides. You’ll have to more selective and creative! For more information and schedule of events, visit: Teton County Fair.

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July 27, 2016

Road Closure on the Moose-Wilson Road Today! on the unpaved section beginning at 4 a.m. Tuesday, July 26, concluding by 8 a.m. Thursday, July 28.

Wildfire rages onto Union Pass; Smoke was thick this morning. The Lava fire near Dubois is pumping smoking into our valley and is growing rapidly.

Buffalo Fork Morning

Buffalo Fork Morning: Smoke enhanced sunrises can be amazingly striking. I kept watching the Teton Range, but the mountains stayed murky. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

First Rays

First Rays: The other location was probably a better spot, but I was searching for other possibilities when the sun broke over the ridge. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

Dusky Grouse

Dusky Grouse: I found a couple of grouse at the top of Signal Mountain. Skies in the northern part of the park were clearer. I went to Signal Mountain to see if I could find a Black Bear feeding on Huckleberries. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Wildlfowers

Wildlfowers: We haven’t had much rain in almost a month, as reported in the Union Pass fire article above. The lack of rain seems to have taken its toll on the wildflower crop this summer, at least at lower elevations. This shot was taken at the top of Signal Mountain. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Young Chipmonk

Young Chipmonk: Little critters, like this one, seem to be fairly common around the Park right now. I spotted a family of Chipmonks skirting around at the top of Signal Mountain. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Today? Remember, a portion of the Moose/Wilson Road is closed all day today. While it won’t be “quiet”, the road might be less busy. There has been a mother moose and calf and a few Great Blue Herons in the area. The Teton County Fair really kicks off today. Go pet a llama, wrestle a pig, watch a rodeo, or photograph the rides! MJ

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July 26, 2016

Road Closure on the Moose-Wilson Road Today! on the unpaved section beginning at 4 a.m. Tuesday, July 26, concluding by 8 a.m. Thursday, July 28.

Custer 2015 and 2016

Bull Moose: Some of the bulls are starting to display impressive early racks. I’d almost bet this is the bull I call “Custer”. I took this shot from the overlook along the Gros Ventre River. The “down tine” he had last year is bigger this year and not pointed down quite as much. This one is growing a down tine on his left antler that matches last year’s right down tine. Both have the bleached white spot on the shoulders.  Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Bull Bison

Bull Bison: This bull had the stem of grass in it’s mouth, like a toothpick, the entire time I watched it. He traveled several hundred yards towards the paved section road at the end the East Boundary Road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Paraglider and Moon

Paraglider and Moon: This morning, my wife did a tandem Paraglide trip from the top of the Gondola at Teton Village. I went out to watch her sail in. She said it was GREAT! Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Nautilus Shell

Nautilus Shell: You probably won’t find a lot of Nautilus shells (especially cut in half) around the Tetons. I bought one off eBay and took a few shots of it today, then applied several textures over the top of the image in Photoshop. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-180 mm micro lens.

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron: Captured along the Moose-Wilson Road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Schwabacher Landing

Schwabacher Landing: The sun is setting directly behind the Grand right now when at Schwabacher Landing. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Sleeping Indian

Sleeping Indian: Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

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July 25, 2016

A Few Notes:

  • InciWeb: Cliff Creek Fire: Click this link anytime you want to get an update on the Cliff Creek Fire.
  • Teton County Fair is underway. During the week, vendors will set up and by the middle of the week, the rides and carnival attractions will be in operation.
  • Morning skies have been mostly clear. Dry and warm days have elevated the fire danger alerts.
  • Road Closure on the Moose-Wilson Road: Road (unpaved section) beginning at 4 a.m. Tuesday, July 26, concluding by 8 a.m. Thursday, July 28.

Ferris Wheel Beginnings

Ferris Wheel Beginnings: I checked the Fairgrounds at lunch time and went back in the afternoon to watch the Ferris Wheel being unfolded. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Ferris Wheel Worker

Ferris Wheel Worker: I was told it can take 4 to 5 hours to fully assemble the Ferris Wheel. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Three Quarter Wheel

Three Quarter Wheel: Watching a Ferris Wheel being erected reminds me of some sort of Transformer Movie. The entire ride folds onto a single trailer, or in this case, is unfolded from the single trailer. I received permission from the manager at Frazier Shows to set up tripods and photograph the sequence as a time lapse. Also, notice the large cloud in the notch of the far right hillside. That’s the smoke cloud from the Cliff Creek fire near Bondourant. The video below squeezes 2 hours and 45 minutes into 36 seconds! Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

 

HD 1080p Video (Slower Loading, but Hi-Res) 36 seconds

Besides the 1000+ JPGs I took for the time lapse, I captured a lot of stills on my D810 and D5. I believe these are screaming for a Feature Page, showing some of the many steps in unfolding the wheel. Sign up to follow this blog to be one of the first to see the post.

Teton Photo Excursions. I offer LICENSED One-On-One Photography Excursions in Grand Teton National Park, with emphasis on helping clients with their camera and gear. Each trip is customized based on client needs and requests. (Note: It says One-On-One, but I take two people on a trip for the same price). We find some of the best locations for scenic photography, and look for wildlife in the process.  Now’s a great time to book a six to eight hour One-On-One Photography Excursion with me for July, August and September!  Check out some of the Client Comments.

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July 24, 2016

Cliff Creek Fire

Cliff Creek Fire: Last evening, I drove down to Bondourant to see the fire firsthand. Based on the amount of smoke and plumes of clouds we’ve seen from Jackson, I expected to find the entire area burned. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Highway 189/191 is OPEN. The Elkhorn Bar and General Store are OPEN. The main burned area was close to the mouth of the canyon, then along Shoal Creek. Black Powder Ranch and structures along the Hoback to the Elk Horn Bar were successfully defended by the fire crews. As of last evening, the leading edge of the fire was north of Bondourant and heading east. A ten mile section of the highway has signs and cones to prohibit people from stopping and parking.

Cliff Creek Fire

If you click this map, you can view a much larger version. The fire jumped the highway and river just at the mouth of the canyon. That is where most of the burn sections can be seen from the highway (roughly a mile).

InciWeb: Cliff Creek Fire

Hoback Campground is open, but Cozy Campground is closed. The gravel road into Granite Canyon (which includes Granite Campground and Granite Falls) is still closed. Crews of firefighters are attempting to keep the fire from that area. The loop out to Little Jenny Ranch is open, but not the forest roads into Shoal Creek and upper Dell Creek.  It does not appear Jackson Hole is in any kind of jeopardy from this fire. Another fire near Dubois may be contributing to local morning smoke.

Bison Herd

Bison Herd: Taken across the sage near Kelly.Nikon D5 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

Bison In Gold

Bison In Gold: There wasn’t a lot of remnant smoke this morning. This gold cast was simply from the light of the first few minutes of sunrise. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Pronghorns

Pronghorns: One of the larger bucks has already gathered many of the area does. Smaller bucks were hanging out together on Warm Springs Road near Kelly. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Bison Face

Bison Face: I parked my van and waited until this bull crossed the dirt road. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Teton Photo Excursions. I offer LICENSED One-On-One Photography Excursions in Grand Teton National Park, with emphasis on helping clients with their camera and gear. Each trip is customized based on client needs and requests. (Note: It says One-On-One, but I take two people on a trip for the same price). We find some of the best locations for scenic photography, and look for wildlife in the process.  Now’s a great time to book a six to eight hour One-On-One Photography Excursion with me for July, August and September!  Check out some of the Client Comments.

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July 23, 2016

Baby Short-tailed Weasel

Baby Short-tailed Weasel: This little weasel came out of the grass while I was getting ready to photograph the early morning Trumpeter Swans. I’ve never seen one this small. So cute! Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Swans in Golden Light

Swans in Golden Light: Taken from the bike path next to Flat Creek. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Baby Barn Swallows

Baby Barn Swallows: Also captured along Flat Creek, just north of the Visitor’s Center on North Cache. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Trumpeter Swan and Cygnets

Trumpeter Swan and Cygnets: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Cedar Waxwing and Berry

Cedar Waxwing and Berry: I had originally planned on heading to Schwabacher Landing or possibly along the Gros Ventre to look for moose, but when I saw the Trumpeter Swans close to the bike path, I knew I didn’t need to go farther this morning. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

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July 22, 2016

Local Loose Ends and Events:

  • Hoback Canyon OPEN again: Road between Hoback Junction and Daniel has been closed due to the Cliff Creek Fire.
  • Upcoming Road Closure on the Moose-Wilson Road: Road (unpaved section) beginning at 4 a.m. Tuesday, July 26, concluding by 8 a.m. Thursday, July 28.
  • Fire Danger Elevated: Teton Interagency fire managers announce that the fire danger rating has increased to Very High for the Bridger-Teton National Forest, Grand Teton National Park and Teton Interagency Dispatch Area.
  • Teton County Fair: Begins June 22. Click the link for events and schedules.
  • JH Rodeo: Saturday Night
  • JH News & Guide Story: Local highways claim another grizzly cub.

Old Patriarch Tree

Old Patriarch Tree: Had to be up and out early for this one! Taken at 6:08 am after the 3/4 mile hike through the sagebrush. How cool would it have been to get the full rainbow over the Patriarch and Cathedral Group! Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Old Patriarch Tree

Old Patriarch Tree: Of course, this is the same place, but taken at 6:44 am. A few of the shots had a near full moon in the upper left. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Clouds Rolling In

Clouds Rolling In: Taken along the Teton Park Road near the North String Lake Junction. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Jenny Lake

Jenny Lake: I’d like to be at this spot on a morning when I had similar clouds as my first Old Patriarch Tree image today.  Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

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July 21, 2016

Moon and Morning CloudsMoon and Morning Clouds: It seems I went out today with two hats. The first one, my normal wildlife and landscape hat, and the other as a reporter for the blog. Clouds for sunrise were spectacular, especially towards the south end of the valley and to the east. The moon was still fairly high in the sky at sunrise. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

4 Lazy F Barn

4 Lazy F Barn: It’s a bit of a hike to get to the 4 Lazy F Barn. As long as the Park Service hasn’t parked a big snow plow or trailer in front of the barn, it is usually worth the hike. Park at the Chapel of the Transfiguration and then hike roughly 3/4 of a mile north on the gravel road (it runs between the Chapel and Menor’s Ferry). Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

4 Lazy R Roofing Crew

4 Lazy R Roofing Crew: Last evening, I enjoyed a pot luck dinner with the volunteers working on the cabins at 4 Lazy F Ranch. They invited me to come back this morning for a few photos. This is essentially the same crew I met while working on the John Moulton Homestead, and again last summer on the T.A. Moulton Barn. GTNP Ranger, Jeff Olson is supervising this project, along with a long list of other volunteer crews this summer. From what I understand, some of the cabins in this ranch will someday house volunteers as they work on the many future projects in GTNP. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

4 Lazy F Skull

4 Lazy F Skull: This skull was hanging on the front of one of the cabins, partially lit by the morning sun. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

Lucas Fabian Crew

Lucas-Fabian Crew: Zane Davis is the Park Ranger overseeing crews building a new path to the recently restored Lucas-Fabian Homestead.  Youth Conservation ProgramGrand Teton National Park: You can read more about this program by clicking on the link. The path is being hand dug for several hundred yards. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Wheelbarrows

Once piles of dirt, rocks and pebbles are removed from the pathway, it has to be hand carried using wheelbarrows to piles near the main road. Two distinct movie scenes were in my mind while there: “Follow the yellow brick road” from the Wizard of Oz and the chain gangs in Cool Hand Luke. Of course, these youngsters signed up to work in Grand Teton National Park this summer. Numerous groups, foundations, and agencies help fund projects like this. Check out Grand Teton National Park Foundation. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Lucas-Fabian Homestead – Grand Teton National Park:In 1998, the Geraldine Lucas Homestead and Fabian Place were listed on the National Register of Historic Places as an Historic District”. (Click the link for additional info and history on the area).  Currently, the Lucas-Fabian area is closed to tourists, and according to Zane Davis, will probably be that way for most of the rest of this summer. Crews will complete the pathway and two footbridges over Cottonwood Creek. Expect the area, located a few miles north of the Taggart Lake Trail Head, to be a “must see” area in the park. The pathway is being built to meet ADA standards (Americans with Disabilities Act).

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July 20, 2016

Tuesday Afternoon Power Outage: Initial reports indicated a power substation in Idaho went down around 5:00 and lasted until around 8:00. The outage forced  businesses to push tourists and customers outside and onto the streets. For the tourists, there was no gas, food, or services during a busy time of the day! For me—no problem! I went out to take photos and do a little fly fishing at Schwabacher Landing. No juice required! I posted a few of the photos last night once the power was turned back on.

Sunrise

Sunrise: As in recent mornings, smoke from the fires is affecting the morning sunrises. Depending on the intensity and direction of the wind, it can clear off quickly, or fill the entire valley. This images was taken following a short hike from Snake River Overlook. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

Setting Full Moon

Setting Full Moon: You can see the hazy blue film of smoke hovering above the valley floor early this morning.  Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

Black Bear

Black Bear: This isn’t a particularly great shot of a bear, but it’s one of only a couple I could get where the bear’s head was up. He was foraging for berries and grubs on Signal Mountain. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Dusky Grouse

Dusky Grouse: (Formerly known as Blue Grouse) I found three of these birds near the top of Signal Mountain. On the drive up, I saw a doe Mule Deer and two fawns, plus a Red Fox. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Indian Paintbrush

Indian Paintbrush: These colorful plants are common along the road to the top of Signal Mountain. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Yellow Wildflowers

Yellow Wildflowers: This nice patch of wildflowers was at the Jenny Lake Overlook on the String Lake / Jenny Lake drive. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

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July 19, 2016

JH News & Guide: Blaze clears out Granite Creek. This story will give you a few more details about the fire near Bondourant and up Granite Creek.

Broad-tailed Hummingbird

Broad-tailed Hummingbird: We still have smoke and haze in town. I saw a male Western Tanager in the back yard early this morning, so I set up a tripod to shoot in the beautiful gold morning light. Hummingbirds have thinned out considerably, but this little male is watching is hanging around and fending off intruders.   Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Starlings

Starlings: I didn’t see the Tanager again, but managed to snap a few of the other birds. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Black-billed Magpie

Black-billed Magpie: Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Baby Ducks

Baby Ducks: Taken at Schwabacher Landing later in the afternoon.  Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Beaver

Beaver: Also taken at Schwabacher Landing. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Smoky Full Moon

Smoky Full Moon: Taken from Antelope Flats Road over the Gros Ventre Slide scar. The moon appeared through the smoke from the Bondurant fire.  Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Moulton Barn

Moulton Barn: Nikon D5 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

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July 18, 2016

Road Closure: Highway 189/191 is closed between Daniel Junction and Hoback Junction due to a forest fire near Bondurant. The road will be closed through at least 10:00 am July 19. For details and updated info, visit: WYDOT Travel Information.

Cliff Creek Fire Pano

Cliff Creek Fire Pano: (Afternoon photo) I received an alert of mandatory evacuation of the Granite Creek drainage, which would include Granite Falls, campground, and hot springs. Afternoon winds pushed this morning’s thick smoke out of town. The same SW winds are sending plumes of smoke towards the northeast towards Sleeping Indian.  Click on this image to see it quite a bit larger. Nikon D5 and Nikon 70-180 mm lens. This image was captured as four separate images and then stitched into a pano in Lightroom CC 2015.5

Schwabacher Sunrise

Schwabacher Sunrise: A wildfire near Bondourant is pumping smoke into the Jackson Hole valley. The smoke can make some of the distant mountains hazy, but it can also filter the morning light in beautiful ways. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Pronghorn

Pronghorn: The gold of morning lasts much longer when there is smoke in the air. This buck was getting ready to cross Mormon Row Road. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Moose Watchers

Moose Watchers: There was a cow moose standing in the shadows next to the Gros Ventre, attracting a crowd of tourists. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Moose Crossing

Moose Crossing: Sometimes they cross a stream…sometimes they cross a road. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Moose Pair

Moose Pair: This is probably the same pair of moose I photographed along the Gros Ventre a few days ago. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Black-billed Magpie

Black-billed Magpie: While the light was still golden, I took a few birds shots in the back yard. This Magpie’s head was slightly behind the focal plane of its claws when it took off, so it’s head isn’t as sharp as I would have liked. The action and motion was still worth posting. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Starlings

Starlings: Around the valley, there are lots of adult birds still taking care of, and feeding their young. The young Starling is waiting to be fed.  Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Rising Moon

Rising Moon: Yesterday, I was taking a photo of a nail head at a distance of roughly 4.5″. Tonight, I took this shot of the moon roughly 235,000 miles away. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

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July 17, 2016 (Sunday in the Park)

Bar BC Ranch

Rusted Vehicle at Bar BC Ranch: If you ever want to step back in time, check out the Bar BC Dude Ranch. It’s located less than a mile from the Taggart Lake Trail Head parking area on what most people call the RKO Road. I went there early to try to capture a few of the morning scenes and then do quite a few close-up and macro shots. Nikon D5 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Bar BC at Alpenglow

Scructures at Bar BC Dude Ranch: The Park Service, Teton Park Foundation, and a long list of volunteers have been systematically working their way through the remaining buildings. Some have been completed and more or less “buttoned up” for the future visitors, while some are still waiting the crew’s attention. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Chipping Paint

Knot and Chipping Paint: A few days ago, I received a vintage (pre-digital) Nikon 70-180mm Zoom Micro lens. Today was the first day I had a good chance to work it in the field. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-180 mm lens.

Nail Head

Nail Head: This image was taken at 180mm at a distance of around 4″. I was testing to see how close I could actually go. I took one image focused on the front edge of the nail head, and then a second one focused on the texture of the log end. Those two images were “stacked” (auto-align layers and auto-blend layers) in Photoshop. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-180 mm lens.

Bar BC Ranch

Notes for Photographers at Bar BC Dude Ranch: Don’t expect to be “blown away” by all the photographic possibilities there. Other than the treasure chest of textures, I find it challenging. Some of the premier buildings are still braced up and covered with shredded green tarp material. Many of the buildings and cabins are tucked in between trees and thick shrubs, while others have power lines and posts in “just the wrong place”. The ranch itself it located just under a bench or terrace, which blocks the views of the Teton Range if you try to get close to some of the buildings. Click the map for an interactive satellite view.

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July 16, 2016

Pronghorn Buck

Pronghorn Buck: Another great morning in Jackson Hole! This poser was in the hay fields near Kelly. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Prancing Buck

Prancing Buck: Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Grand and Trees

Grand and Trees: The weather reports said it would be clear after about 5:00 am. Broken clouds in the east allowed for a variety of changing lighting conditions on the west side of the valley. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Morning Fence

Morning Fence: Captured along Mormon Row. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Schwabacher Clouds

Schwabacher Clouds: Just another way of seeing the scene. I am usually shooting from a very low vantage point to get the Teton reflections. Clear skies?. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

March of the Golden Eyes

March of the Golden Eyes: A couple of weeks ago, I photographed this Golden Eye with 24 chicks at Schwabacher Landing. As of today, she still has 21! They were crossing one of the beaver dams this morning. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

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July 15, 2016

Cow and Calf

Cow and Calf: Most people seem to want to know about wildlife…so I’ll start with them today. This pair was along the Gros Ventre this morning. There were at least two nice bulls in the willows a few hundred yards upstream. I chose to spend the morning with the cow and calf. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Cow and Calf Crossing the Gros Ventre

Cow and Calf Crossing the Gros Ventre: Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Cow and Calf Crossing the Gros Ventre

Alert Cow Moose: Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Black and White Barn

Black and White Barn: Last year, someone drove through this opening and then around in the area in front of the TA Moulton Barn. It put deep tracks in the area. The Park Service recently added a new gate there. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-180 mm micro lens.

Cactus Flowers

Cactus Flowers: Last evening, I drove out to the Kelly Warm Springs and took a few cactus flower shots using the new lens. The light was added using a small MagLite during a 9 second exposure. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-180 mm micro lens.

Door Knob

Door Knob: I had considered staying out for star photography, but with the moon already at over half coverage, it seemed too bright. I took this shot at one of the houses at the John Moulton Homestead along Mormon Row. It was also lit by a small pen light. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-180 mm micro lens.

Chain and Shadows

Chain and Shadows: This is the chain hanging off the post in the black and white image above. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-180 mm micro lens.

Farm Equipment

Farm Equipment: Taken at the Moulton Bed and Breakfast on Mormon Row. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-180 mm micro lens.

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July 14, 2016

Wildflowers? Indian Paintbrush might be the hot subject right now. Look for them on the drive up Signal Mountain, at the top of Teton Pass, and up Mosquito Creek. I didn’t photograph Columbines this year for some reason, but it appears their window of opportunity is past. There are still Purple Lupines around and Penstemon scattered around. Check the area around the Colter Bay visitor’s center.y.

Two Flicker ChicksFlicker Chicks: A Northern Flicker Journal : 2016 Throughout much of April, May, and June, I photographed a Northern Flicker pair building a nest and raising their chicks in my back yard. This shot shows two babies. At the time, I wasn’t sure if the males had the orange patches under their cheeks while still a nesting chick. I was digging around in my old Flicker photos and found one showing a baby with the orange patch. So, it appears my pair raised at least two female Northern Flickers. I was out on a tour the day they actually fledged.

30 Roses

30 Roses: Fed-Ex arrived today with a new (used) Nikon 70-180mm Zoom Micro (Macro) lens. I spent a few minutes checking the AF Fine Tune with it on three bodies and then tried this test shot. The image above is a result of a few technologies!

First Image

First Image: This is the first image of 30 I took of this rose. I focused on the closest element of the rose, and then let my CamRanger adjust the focus for the remaining 29 images. It took the system a couple of minutes to capture all 30 jpg images. (This is a test image, so there was no need to capture it with all RAW files). The lens was only 9″ from the closest edge of the flower,  captured with a Nikon D810 body.

Last Image

Last Image: In the CamRanger software, I initially set the camera to capture 10 images in medium mode. That only focused to the back edge of the rose, so I set the software to 30 to give it a try. It seemed to be the correct number for this shot.

The 30 images were exported out of Lightroom into a single image as individual layers. Easy! Then, I ran the Auto Blend option, which took about 3 1/2 minutes to produce the top image. One of the advantages of using a CamRanger on this kind of image is I never have to physically touch the body or tripod during the 30 shots. Everything was controlled while looking at the software on my  iPad. Scroll back up to the first image to see the results again!

Okay…big deal…a flower! This is is a test image, but it prepares me for a real images someday soon. How about a Dragon Fly on a stem? Same steps…just a different subject.

This lens is awfully nice. It is very sharp, has auto focus, and is a zoom lens to boot! The Nikon 70-180mm lens was made back when people were still shooting film on full frame bodies, but they still work on a digital camera as a FX lens. I expect this lens to get a lot of use!

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July 13, 2016

Young Bull Moose Crossing GV

Young Bull Moose Crossing the Gros Ventre: Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Young Bull Moose at GV

Young Moose at GV: These appeared to be siblings…same size and comfortable around each other. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Crossing GV Side Channel

Crossing GV Side Channel: Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Side Channel

Side Channel: Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Feeding Moose

Feeding Moose: Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Red Fox

Red Fox: This fox was hunting alongside the access road into Blacktail Pond Overlook. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Wildlife Loose Ends: A few days ago, I posted “the bison are back” in the southern portion of the Park. There were several hundred bison, including a lot of babies. Lately, the only ones I have seen are several miles north of the Mormon Row barns. Pronghorns are fairly common, scattered all over the sage flats. This morning, I saw seven moose, but only photographed the two in the Gros Ventre. (Remember, you usually have to be out VERY EARLY to spot moose). When coming off Shadow Mountain Sunday morning, I had to stop for five Short-eared Owls sitting on Antelope Flats Road. It was still dark, so I didn’t try to photograph them.

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July 12, 2016

Pronghorn

Pronghorn: I didn’t have a lot of light for this shot. Sun had just started showing itself. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Morning Meadowlark

Morning Meadowlark: Captured along Mormon Row Road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Blacktail Ponds Overlook

Blacktail Ponds Overlook: Some areas of the valley had fog this morning, but not many clouds. Nikon D910 and Nikon 24-80mm lens.

Schwabacher Reflection

Schwabacher Reflection: Taken at one of the many beaver ponds at Schwabacher now. Nikon D910 and Nikon 24-80mm lens.

Spider Web

Spider Web: This web was in the fence along Flat Creek. I stopped there hoping to see the Trumpeter Swan family in the fog. Nikon D5 and Nikon 28-300 mm lens.

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July 11, 2016:

Saturday night, I got up at 2:30 am or so and headed North for some star photography. Getting up that early always takes a toll on my energy for the next few days. Even when I think I can get a couple of hours of sleep in the day, it seldom ever happens. I looked out the window early this morning and saw thick clouds, some wet trees, and wind pushing them around. The Tetons were covered most of the morning and part of the afternoon, so I spent my time working on a studio project.

Stars and Clouds

Stars and Clouds: I took a LOT of photos Saturday night (er…Sunday morning). More importantly, I took a lot of panoramic parts and a lot of HDR bracketed sets. In some cases, I took bracketed pano sets. The shot above is actually made up of three or four vertical images, stitched into one image using Lightroom CC. Nikon D5 and Nikon 14-24 mm lens.

Last of the Stars

Last of the Stars: This is a panoramic image created by stitching three or four horizontal images from a 21 megapixel D5. It was captured during the “blue light” period with stars beginning to disappear. Nikon D5 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Sunrise

Sunrise: After leaving Shadow Mountain, I headed generally towards the Mormon Row barns. There were a lot of people at both barns, so I opted to go to the pastures and try for some of the Chambers Homestead barns. The real magic that morning happened in the east. This shot consisted of 9 images. I bracketed each part of the pano with three images: one regular, one two stops under, and one two stops overexposed. It took three sets to span this final stitched pano. This image was processed completely in Lightroom CC and saved as a fully editable DNG file (digital negative). Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

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July 10, 2016:

Milky Way

Milky Way: Taken atop Shadow Mountain at about 3:45 am. The orange clouds were lit by the airport runway lights. Nikon D5 and Nikon 14-24 mm lens.

Stars with Tetons

Stars with Tetons: I took quite a few pano images this morning. Still waiting for the disk to download. This is a single capture. Nikon D5 and Nikon 14-24 mm lens.

Chambers Barns

Chambers Barns: Taken along Mormon Row. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Northern Harrier with Catch

Northern Harrier with Catch: Taken along Mormon Row Road in early morning light. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Pronghorn Doe

Pronghorn Doe: Also captured along Mormon Row Road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Morning Trumpeter Swans

Morning Trumpeter Swans: Taken along Flat Creek on the north edge of town. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Cedar Waxwing

Cedar Waxwing: There are quite a few Waxwings working along the fences for berries and insects along Flat Creek. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

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July 9, 2016:

Shadow Mountain Sunrise

Shadow Mountain Sunrise: Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Hereford Ranch

Hereford Ranch: Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Hunter Ranch

Hunter Ranch: Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

First Farmer's Market

First Farmer’s Market: Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Brian Ernst

Brian Ernst at the Farmer’s Market: Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Teton Photo Excursions. I offer LICENSED One-On-One Photography Excursions in Grand Teton National Park, with emphasis on helping clients with their camera and gear. Each trip is customized based on client needs and requests. (Note: It says One-On-One, but I take two people on a trip for the same price). We find some of the best locations for scenic photography, and look for wildlife in the process.  Now’s a great time to book a six to eight hour One-On-One Photography Excursion with me for July, August and September!  Check out some of the Client Comments.

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July 8, 2016:

Weekend Events:

Gros Ventre Sunrise

Gros Ventre Sunrise: Taken from the footbridge over the Gros Ventre River.

Pronghorns

Pronghorns: This is the first time I’ve actually seen a baby Pronghorn this year. I captured this one from Mormon Row Road just after sunrise. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Bison Herd

Bison Herd: The Bison are back! They’ve spent much of the early summer in the Elk Flats area. Nice to see them in the southern end of the park again. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

Bison Cow and Calf

Bison Cow and Calf: Taken from Mormon Row Road with the north end of Blacktail Butte in front of the Grand. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

Wildflowers

Wildflowers: This image was taken about half way up Shadow Mountain. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

Shadow Mountain Wildflowers

Shadow Mountain Wildflowers: There are plenty of prime wildflowers covering the southern end of Shadow Mountain (on the east side of the valley). Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm lens.

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July 7, 2016:

Pronghorns

Pronghorns: I saw this group of Pronghorns along Mormon Row Road early this morning. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Balloons on the Ground

Hot Air Balloons: Ready for take-off along the Moose/Wilson Road.  Wyoming Balloon Company  Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Hot Air Balloon

Hot Air Balloon: Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

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July 6, 2016:

Swan Family

Swan Family: Captured from the observation deck along Flat Creek. ikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Swan With New Flight Feathers

Swan With New Flight Feathers: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

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July 5, 2016:

Sunrise Mule Deer

Sunrise Mule Deer: Darla and I were invited to spend the 4th of July weekend with a friend in Ennis, MT. Actually, we finally took him up on the offer after several years. This photo was taken early this morning on my drive from Ennis to Virginia City and Nevada City. I made three trips there over our stay. Nevada City and Virginia City are old gold and silver mining towns, absolutely loaded with rusting vehicles, gold mining equipment, and railroad equipment.

Robin On Pickett Fence

Robin On Picket Fence: I was taking photos of this old picket fence in Nevada City when a Robin landed on it.

Silver Engine

Silver Engine: Instead of loading the Daily Journal with photos, I will be posting a new Feature Page loaded with photos from the two historic towns.

Virginia City, MT

Please, take a minute and SIGN UP to follow Best of the Tetons to  be one of the first people to see the new page!

Horseback Riders

Horseback Riders: I did a quick loop into GTNP just before dark and saw this group of people along Mormon Row.

Red Fox

Red Fox: This Fox was heading West with her stash of voles for the growing Kits. I spotted her along Antelope Flats Road.

Red Fox

Red Fox: Panning at 1/200th second with a shallow depth of field.

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July 4, 2016: Independence Day

Cactus Flowers

Cactus Flowers:

Pronghorn

Pronghorn:

Nevada City Dredger

Nevada City Dredger:

Montana Sunset

Montana Sunset PanoNikon D810 and Nikon 80-400 mm

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July 3, 2016: Sunday of 4th of July Weekend

Sunrise On Teton Pass

Sunrise On Teton PassNikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm

Balloon Fest

Balloon Fest: We were in Driggs, ID at Sunrise for the Teton Valley Balloon Fest, but unfortunately, the event was cancelled for the morning due to inclement weather. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70mm lens.

Old Red Barn

Old Red Barn: Sunrise at Tetonia, ID. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm

Grain Elevators

Grain Elevators: Also in Tetonia, ID. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm

Angel Rays

Angel Rays: Taken a mile or so East of Ashton, ID. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm

Virginia City

Virginia City: A historic old gold mining town west of Ennis, MT. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm

Candy In Bulk

Candy In Bulk: I snapped these in a candy store in Virginia City. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70 mm

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July 2, 2016: Saturday of 4th of July Weekend

Stagecoach

Stagecoach: How about a few shots from the Jackson Town Square! With the long 4th of July Weekend, the town is quite busy. Some will be in town until Monday night for the Fireworks display at Snow King Resort. Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600 mm lens.

Town Square Photographers

Town Square Photographers: Candid shots from downtown. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

Make a "Y"

Make a “Y”: I have been seeing this pose a lot recently. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

Gateway to the Parks

Gateway to the Parks: A left turn at the Square sends tourists into our two National Parks. Nikon D810 and Nikon 70-200 mm lens.

JH Tidbits: Gasoline has been holding steady in town at around $2.45 per gallon. It is always higher in the Park.

Upcoming Events

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July 1, 2016:

Pronghorn Trio

Pronghorn Trio: Taken from the vehicle window along Gros Ventre Road. For Pronghorns, I typically stay inside my vehicle and shoot over a bean bag in the window. Once you get out of the vehicle, they often high tail it. I haven’t seen any baby Pronghorns yet this year, though I’ve had a few reports of people seeing them.  Nikon D810 and Tamron 150-600mm lens.

Cloudscapes

Cloudscapes: Taken from Gros Ventre Road—aiming generally south towards town. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70mm lens.

Teton Range at Sunset

Teton Range at Sunset: I was hoping for a more spectacular sunset behind the Tetons, but this is still better than most sunsets. Nikon D810 and Nikon 24-70mm lens.

June was a very busy month. The beginning of July should have much of the same look and feel as the end of June. Check out that page! I’ll be adding July photos to this page later today.

Summer Moose

Moose from along the Gros Ventre a couple of days ago. There are several turnouts along the Gros Ventre Road. Moose “can be” visible at about any of them. Watch for  cars parked along the road and people standing along the bank overlooks. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm lens.

Fireworks

2013 Fireworks: Taken from the observation platform along Flat Creek.

Fireworks Links:

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