Best of the Tetons

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March 2018 Daily Journal for JH & GTNP

March Stream

“Winter, with hints of Spring”

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Check Out These THREE Popular Pages: If I Had Only One Winter Day in the Tetons: and A Trip to Jackson Hole and Winter in the Tetons: Tips for travel and photography.

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March 31, 2018 Saturday

Jackson Hole Ski Resort

Jackson Hole Ski Resort: April 1st is the traditional “GaperDay – (Wikipedia)” on many mountains including Teton Village. GaperDay is a mountain tradition that takes place in ski resorts across North America. It is the day when locals can dress in the most ridiculous outfits and pretend to be like their gaper counterparts. Their getup can range from no or very limited clothing (only shorts) to the most retro ski attire there is.” Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens, Handheld.

Tetons

Tetons: Taken from Gros Ventre Road. Antelope Flats Road is still closed. Expect delays at Gros Ventre Junction starting April 2nd. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens, Handheld.

Elk

Elk: Each morning, additional Elk are moving off the National Elk Refuge and back into the Parks and National Forests. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Elk Migration

Elk Migration: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Shoshone Dancer

Shoshone Dancer: I took this photo several years ago at Ft. Washakie. I met John Pingree at the Ft. Bridger Mountain Man Rendezvous and managed to meet him at his house at Ft. Washakie the next year. We spent several hours at some red cliffs near his house where he posed and danced as I added a ton of actuations to my Nikon D300. One of the images from that day was featured on a full page in the Cowboys and Indians Magazine photo contest.

Teton Images

If you have never visited my photo site at Teton Images, check it out! Click the link or the image above. Prairie Warriors, the chasing stallions near the bottom, won first place in the Equestrian division of Cowboys and Indian Magazine another year. The photo of the Mountain Goat jumping the ravine was used in a European TV advertisement. The fighting stallions in the upper right we also in Cowboy and Indians Magazine. Photos on that site are available for sale via the Cart next to each image. The screen grab above shows just a few of the images in the Quick View Sampler.

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March 30, 2018 Friday

Snake River Overlook Sunset

Snake River Overlook Sunset: I had a photo tour/workshop yesterday afternoon. My client’s main goal was to get a sunset with the Teton Range. We timed the evening to be at Snake River Overlook at sunset. Before that we spent some time driving around Oxbow Bend, around the Dam, and all the way up to Pilgrim Creek and Colter Bay. There is still a considerable amount of snow in the north. The dividing line right now is Antelope Flats Road. South of there, much of the snow pack is either gone or very thin, and north still has snow. We saw a Red Fox on the ice at Oxbow, along with a big Beaver at the edge of the open water. Most of it is still frozen and all of Jackson Lake is frozen.

The photo above is an HDR Pano, consisting of four horizontal sets of three HDR Pano images. The HDR portion were captured as three shots: 2 stops over, Normal, and 2 stops over. The resulting four sets of HDR composites were then stitched into a single Pano, then adjusted as normal. Click the image above to see it much larger. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens, Level Tripod.

Feathered Fridays: This is the last of the Feathered Fridays at the Visitor’s Center on North Cache. The Teton Raptor Center will be there from Noon to 2:00 PM with four of their Raptors.

Easter Egg Hunt: For the kids at the Town Square. The event starts at 10:00 am and is over at 10:05! We were there every year when our kids were little. It’s a fun event.

Wolf and Eagle

Wolf and Eagle: There was a lot of activity near Kelly this morning. A Gray Wolf was on an Elk Carcass as we pulled over at the site. It walked off soon afterwards, but returned to run a Bald Eagle off the carcass. My clients probably got more and better shots than me as I was helping them get set up and going. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Coyote and Raven

Coyote and Raven: When the Wolves moved off, three Coyotes and several Bald Eagles, Ravens and Black-billed Magpies moved in. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle: The carcass is roughly 100 yards from the road. Scavengers will be cleaning it up for a couple of days. The Wolves could return? Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Bighorn Rams

Bighorn Rams: There are a lot of Bighorns still on Miller Butte at the National Elk Refuge. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Bighorn Ram

Bighorn Ram: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Bighorns on the Run

Bighorns on the Run: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

South Park Barn

South Park Barn: We are still in the transition between Winter and Spring. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens, Handheld.

Bohemian Waxwings

Bohemian Waxwings: Found in East Jackson. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

If you are interested in taking a Best of the Tetons Photo Tour with me, click the photo below! For inquiries, send an email to info@bestofthetetons.com. I have numerous openings in April, and May and June. Book early for September…slots fill fast!

Best of the Tetons Photo Tours

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March 29, 2018 Thursday

Red Fox

New Feature Post: Foxes of Winter and Spring 2018   If you are already a subscriber at Best of the Tetons, you would have received a notification of this new post. Sign up now to get future notifications!

Warm Springs Elk

Warm Springs Elk: Captured at first light next to the Kelly Warm Springs.  Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Coyote

Coyote: Photographed just north of Kelly. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Meadowlark

Spring Meadowlark: Also captured near Kelly. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Red-tailed Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk: This raptor was seen on Spring Gulch Road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Bohemian Waxwing

Bohemian Waxwing: I spotted a large flock of Bohemian Waxwings near the Post Office and spent about 15 minutes with them before a pair of Black-billed Magpies spooked them from the neighborhood. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Bohemian Waxwing

Bohemian Waxwing: It was good shooting while it lasted! Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Bohemian Waxwing

Bohemian Waxwing: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

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March 28, 2018 Wednesday

Another Foggy Morning

Another Foggy Morning: Taken along the Gros Ventre this morning. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Two Gray Wolves

Two Gray Wolves: This is a long distance, cropped, oversharpened “record” shot of two Wolves seen in the Kelly area this morning. I missed them crossing the road by only a couple of minutes. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Moose Licking Vehicle

Moose Licking Vehicle: A few weeks ago, the Park Service installed a flashing sign on Gros Ventre Road telling people to NOT let the Moose lick your vehicle, but the sign has been gone for quite a while. I had never seen them licking until today. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Moose Licking Vehicle

Moose Licking Vehicle: This shot illustrates how large an adult Moose is. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Moose Cow

Moose Cow: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Historic Barn

Historic Barn: This barn is located on private property inside Grand Teton National Park. I’ll have to find the photo on my iPhone, but I was told this is the oldest barn remaining in the valley. Currently, the lower half is being used as a woodworking shop and the upper section is used at times as a playroom for the kids. Nikon D850 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens, Handheld.

Bohemian Waxwing

Bohemian Waxwing: A flock of Waxwings were in my neighborhood this afternoon. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Bohemian Waxwing

Bohemian Waxwing: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Bohemian Waxwing

Bohemian Waxwing: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

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March 27, 2018 Tuesday

Grand Peak

Grand Peak: Sunrise on the Grand. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Morning Notes: Crews are adding new signs and beginning to grade around the Gros Ventre Junction Roundabout. Yesterday, snowplows cleared Antelope Flats Road, but it is still gated. I missed the Wolves by a few minutes again this morning, even though I spent all of my time is the area. It appears Snow King is closed to skiing now. I saw my first few Meadowlarks north of Kelly today.

Elk Migration

Elk Migration: Captured on the Gros Ventre Road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Shane Cabin

Shane Cabin: Nikon D500 and Tamron 18-400mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Warm Springs

Warm Springs: Nikon D500 and Tamron 18-400mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Warm Springs

Warm Springs: The Park Service has been talking about killing off the tropical fish in Kelly Warm Springs. These fish are thriving in the outlet stream. If they try moving downstream, the cold water will kill them, and if a few make it to the Snake, I’d suggest they would be the perfect sized food for the native Cutthroats. Nikon D500 and Tamron 18-400mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Afternoon

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle: Seen along Spring Gulch Road late in the day. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Red-tailed Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk: Also seen on Spring Gulch Road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Cross Fox

Cross Fox: Seen north of Kelly just before sunset. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Cross Fox

Cross Fox: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

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March 26, 2018 Monday

Trumpeter Swans

Trumpeter Swans: I would expect some of the Wintering Trumpeters to begin their migration soon. These were photographed at Boyle’s Hill pond, but they are currently scattered all over the valley. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Area Comments: The Snow King Hill Climb is over. Contestants, tourists, and all of the trailers are leaving the town. Also, Spring Break began last Friday, so the town will feel quiet for a couple of weeks. When I was in the Kelly area today, I noticed the two dirt roads (Warm Springs Road and Powerline Road) have new Road Closed signs. Antelope Flats Road is still closed, but there isn’t a lot of snow on the road. Sage Grouse are likely on the leks early in the morning.

Lockhart Cattle Ranch

Lockhart Cattle Ranch: This barn is south of Jackson. I saw a newborn calf in one of the pastures—another indication of Spring. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

South Park Barn

South Park Barn: Yesterday’s new snow melted fast in many areas of the valley. This barn is also located south of town. Canada Geese are entering the valley and flying over regularly. I saw two pairs already staking claims on some of the Osprey nests. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

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March 25, 2018 Sunday

Bull Moose

Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda

I got up early, with snow falling, and decided to take my time getting out. The Tetons were covered with heavy clouds and the sky was originally dark in the east. No hurry. As it turned out, if I had headed out 15-20 minutes earlier, I could have seen a couple of Gray Wolves crossing within 20 yards of the vehicles near Kelly Warm Springs. The Wolves moved into the hay fields north of Gros Ventre Road—roughly 400-500 yards out. While waiting and hoping they would move closer to the road, I photographed this Bull Moose. Notice the “globe” of new growth on this bull’s antlers. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Fence Line

Fence Line: After giving up on the Wolves, I went back into landscape/wildlife “hybrid” mode. I didn’t notice them at the time I took the first few shots of this fence, but there were two Coyotes just to the left of the fence on Spring Gulch Road. I was watching for Owls, Coyotes, Wolves, Hawks and Eagles. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Red Barn

Red Barn on Spring Gulch Road: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Number 5

Number 5: The fresh snow supplied the drips on this old truck seen in Wilson. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Young Bighorns

Young Bighorns: I found around 30 bighorns on the National Elk Refuge. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

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March 24, 2018 Saturday

Moose

Moose: I didn’t actually count, but I’d estimate I saw at least 20 Moose again this morning. There were a huge number of Elk moving north on the National Elk Refuge, some of which have already moved north of the Gros Ventre River and back into Grand Teton National Park. I spotted at least three Bald Eagles, numerous Ravens, Mule Deer, and at least three Coyotes, but no Foxes. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mountain Goat

Mountain Goat: I went down the Snake River Canyon where I only saw six Mountain Goats. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

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March 23, 2018 Friday

Mountain Goat

Wet Mountain Goat from yesterday.

I had some requests for more details on the Moose-Wilson Road closure:

“In addition to the road plowing operations, the segment of Moose-Wilson Road between Murie Ranch Road and the Death Canyon Road will be closed to all users, including cyclists, for two weeks to accommodate road drainage improvements. From April 30 through May 13, a contractor will replace drainage culverts to prevent future flooding on the road in the area south of Sawmill Ponds”

Summer Travel in a Nutshell: Visitors and locals are going to have to plan ahead this spring and summer—allowing a lot of extra time for getting around in Jackson Hole. The construction at the roundabout will delay all visitors between 15 and 30 minutes each direction. If you think you can skirt the issue by going down Spring Gulch Road, you’ll have to wait at the one way light at the bridge over the Gros Ventre, AND still get caught up in the delays at the highway junction. The middle section of the Moose-Wilson Road normally doesn’t open until May 1st, but will not open until May 13th this year. When it does open, expect heavier than normal traffic, and remember it is not open to campers and trailers at any time of the year. I haven’t heard much on the plan to limit the number of people/vehicles on the Moose-Wilson Road that was supposed to go into effect this year, too.

Morning in the Park

Foxes

Foxes: I saw a couple of Foxes this morning, but they were never close enough for quality photos. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Teton Morning

Teton Morning: Light and clouds changed several times in the morning hours. Antelope Flats Road is still closed. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens, Handheld.

Teton Morning

Teton Morning: Taken at roughly the same spot, but maybe an hour later. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens, Handheld.

Scruffy Moose

Scruffy Moose: I counted 20+ Moose this morning. Of course, none of the bulls still have antlers. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Three Moose

Three Moose: I was hoping all three of the Moose would raise their head at the same time, but I could only capture them one at a time. These three, plus the cow above, were grazing near the highway near Gros Ventre Junction. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

If you are interested in taking a Best of the Tetons Photo Tour with me, click the photo below! For inquiries, send an email to info@bestofthetetons.com. I have numerous openings in April, and May and June. Book early for September…slots fill fast!

Best of the Tetons Photo Tours

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March 22, 2018 Thursday

Valley Notes

We are three weeks into March now and the hints of Spring I mentioned at the first of the month are in full swing.

  • Snow King Hill Climb 2018 in Jackson Hole, Wyoming coming this weekend! Town will be “buzzing” with the roar of the snowmobiles and extra tourists.
  • The Pole, Pedal, Paddle event is also this weekend.
  • Check out Feathered Fridays: The Raptor Center shows off four raptors each Friday from Noon to 2:00 pm at the Visitor’s Center on North Cache.
  • The north end of the Moose-Wilson Road will be closing for road construction soon.
  • The bridge over the Gros Ventre River on Spring Gulch Road is still under construction

Mountain Goats

Mountain Goats: Yesterday, I was “grounded” a bit with my truck getting a new fuel gauge sensor. Today, I drove down the Snake River Canyon where I found around 50 Mountain Goats coming off the high peaks to graze closer to the road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mountain Goat Nanny

Mountain Goat Nanny: I took around 2400 images today!…then processed 20 of them for the blog. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mountain Goats

Mountain Goats: I wasn’t sure if I got this scuffle. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mountain Goat

Mountain Goat: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mountain Goat

Mountain Goat: There was light rain or drizzle almost the entire time I spent photographing the Mountain Goats. It made their fur look more matted than on dry days. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mountain Goat

Mountain Goat: Warm temperatures are melting the snow quickly, but I managed to get a few moving across sections of snow. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mountain Goat

Mountain Goat: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

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March 21, 2018 Wednesday

Oregon Junco

Oregon Junco: I dropped my truck off at the dealer today to get a fuel gauge sensor replaced, so I didn’t have a chance to drive around. I added some food for the birds and took a few shots for today’s entry. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

House Finch

House Finch: I’ve seen a few House Finches lately. Other people are reporting seeing Redpolls. The JH News and Guide had a photo of a Virginia Rail on the front cover yesterday. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

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March 20, 2018 First Day of Spring

Cow Moose

Cow Moose: I counted 18 Moose this morning as a drove around Gros Ventre Road and East Boundary Road. This cow was near Gros Ventre Junction. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Bull Moose

Bull Moose: This bull Moose is beginning to grow its antlers. He still has a beautiful coat, while the cow above is already shaggy. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Bull Moose

Bull Moose: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

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March 19, 2018 Monday

Four Dog Day!

Red Fox Jumping

Red Fox Hunting: This afternoon, I managed to photograph three different Red Foxes and a Coyote in the sage flats north of Kelly. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Digger

Digger: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Watching

Watching: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Cross Fox

Cross Fox: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Cross Fox

Cross Fox: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Third Red Fox

Third Red Fox: I jumped out and snapped this quick shot. It wasn’t as sharp as I like, but it documents the third fox of the day. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Coyote

Coyote: At first, I thought this large Coyote was a Wolf, but when it turned its head, I knew if was a Coyote. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

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March 18, 2018 Sunday

Bald Eagle

Backlit Bald Eagle: Seen at the edge of the National Elk Refuge. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Cross Fox

Cross Fox: Fresh Wolf tracks were nearby on the East Boundary Road. This Fox was moving away from them and seemed more skittish than normal. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Cross Fox

Cross Fox: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Morning Clouds

Morning Clouds: Taken along the Gros Ventre Road as the morning clouds began to lift. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens, Handheld.

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March 17, 2018 St. Patrick’s Day

Free Concerts at Teton Village today!!!!!

Winter Ghost

Winter Ghost: Captured during a heavy snowfall in the Snake River Canyon. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

White Ghost

Ghost at the Edge of the Forest: There were other, closer Mtn. Goats during the storm, but I liked the distant ones against the trees. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Nanny and Kid

Nanny and Kid: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Scratching

Scratching: Traffic was getting congested at the spot where Mtn. Goats were in the snow storm. A Highway Patrol Officer came by and turned on his flashing lights. I drove down the canyon only a half mile and found half dozen other goats. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Steller's Jay

Steller’s Jay: I had planned on heading down the Canyon all along, but when I saw the Steller’s Jay, I postponed the trip and managed to get a few shots of him. The fresh snow added to the scene! Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Northern Flicker

Northern Flicker: I never know what is going to appear in my back yard. This male only hung around for a few minutes. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Oregon Junco

Oregon Junco: This variant has a dark cape and light chest. The Dark-eyed Juncos have a blue-gray cape and more rust under the belly. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Sparrow

Sparrow: I’ll have to look this sparrow up later. It was a nice poser today. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

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March 16, 2018 Friday

Rendezvous Spring Concert

Rendezvous Spring Concert: TheSt. Patrick’s Day weekend is filled with festivities and music. Broadway, on the Town Square, was closed today for the evening and night concerts. I carried a Nikon D5 and Nikon 24-70mm for the first act, then took it back to the truck to exchange it for a much warmer jacket.

Mavericks

The Mavericks were the headline band tonight. I took this with an iPhone 7 from around three people deep in the crowd. They put on a heck of a concert! The Christmas Lights on the Town Square are still on, adding to the magical feel of the evening.

There will be bands at the Jackson Hole Ski Resort tomorrow afternoon and night.

I’ve heard of people seeing bear tracks in the Northern zones of GTNP. There seems to be quite a few photographers looking for them, but I am unaware of any actual Grizzly sightings. I’ve heard of a couple of Black Bear sightings near Jackson and also around Teton Village.

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March 15, 2018 Thursday

Pair of Trumpeter Swans

Pair of Trumpeter Swans: I hung around for a while, hoping these two Swans would take off, but they seemed to like their spot. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Magpie

Black-billed Magpie: Bluebirds are fairly common along the National Elk Refuge fence line. I pulled into one of the turnouts and waited for one to land on a nearby post. I didn’t have any luck with the Bluebirds, but this Magpie flew in and posed for me. A few bleached out Bighorns were on the National Elk Refuge after lunch. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Dark-eyed Junco

Dark-eyed Junco: Today is the first day I’ve seen these little ground feeders. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Oregon Junco

Oregon Junco: These Juncos show up early in the season, then I seldom see them during the summer months. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Clark's Nutcracker

Clark’s Nutcracker: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Dark-eyed Junco

Dark-eyed Junco: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

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March 14, 2018 Wednesday

Mt. Moran

Mt. Moran: Taken from Antelope Flats junction. Nikon D850 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens, Handheld.

Sunrise Pano

Sunrise Pano: This stitched pano was taken at one of the pull-outs along the highway. Clouds stayed over the top of the Grand all morning, but the early color was great! Nikon D850 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens, Handheld.

Mt. Moran

Mt. Moran at Snake River Overlook. Nikon D850 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens, Tripod.

Bull Moose

Bull Moose: Seen near the JH Airport. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Canada Goose

Canada Goose: Landing at Flat Creek Wetlands. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Red-winged Blackbird

Red-winged Blackbird: Also seen at Flat Creek Wetlands. My wife said she saw “thousands” of Mountain Bluebirds on her walk south of town today. The should be scattering around the valley soon. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

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March 13, 2018 Tuesday

New Feature Post: Winter Landscapes 2018

Tetonia Grain Elevator

Tetonia Grain Elevator: Darla and I drove to Rexburg, ID to get the scheduled service work on her Rav 4. On the way, we stopped a few times for me to get a few shots. Tetonia has several old grain elevators and related structures like this one. Nikon D500 and Tamron 18-400mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Tetonia Truck

Tetonia Truck: I’ve driven past this old truck many times, but the exposed grass and fields of snow helped make it stand out. I just uploaded a square format version of this truck on Instagram, if interested. Nikon D500 and Tamron 18-400mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Ririe Elevators

Ririe Elevators: On the way home from Idaho Falls, we stopped in Ririe for a few more shots. I went “lean” with only my Nikon D500 and Tamron 18-400mm lens—both DX. Nikon D500 and Tamron 18-400mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle: I’ve never thought of the D500 and Tamron 18-400mm as a wildlife combination, especially at 400mm (600mm equivalent) but it did okay in this late evening shot. Normally, I would use a Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 lens. Nikon D500 and Tamron 18-400mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Teton Pass Pano

Teton Pass Pano: We made it to the top of Teton Pass at about the right time for a sunset shot. This is a handheld three shot pano, stitched in Lightroom. Nikon D500 and Tamron 18-400mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Textures

Textures: While away from home, I like to grab a few texture shots of all kinds. This was part of an old truck in Ririe, ID. Nikon D500 and Tamron 18-400mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

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March 12, 2018 Sunday

Mt. Moran

Mt. Moran: Taken from Snake River Overlook. Nikon D850 and Nikon 24-70mm Lens, Tripod.

Frosted Moose

Frosted Moose: Seen near the Jackson Hole Airport. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Swan in Flight

Swan in Flight: Captured at the National Fish Hatchery. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Stretching Swan

Stretching Swan: Taken at the Flat Creek Wetlands on the north side of the Visitor’s Center. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

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March 11, 2018 Saturday

Bull Elk

Bull Elk: Taken just after first from the Highway into the National Elk Refuge. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Fox Portrait

Fox Portrait: The Fox is saw on the National Refuge was still in shadows. This one was near the Highway. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mountain Goat

Mountain Goat: Seen near the Highway in the Snake River Canyon. Nikon D850 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Mountain Goats

Mountain Goats: Nikon D850 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Remember to set the Time and Date info in your camera to reflect the changes in Daylight Savings Time.

Hints of Spring: I saw my first Mountain Bluebirds and couple of days ago. I heard of sightings of Red-winged Blackbirds. Red-tailed Hawks are becoming more common. Elk are gradually migrating off the Refuge. Mountain Goats are coming down more regularly. Foxes are pairing up and mating. Wolves are following Elk.

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March 10, 2018 Saturday

Morning on Spring Gulch Road

Morning on Spring Gulch Road: Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens, Handheld.

Elk Herd

Elk Herd: Elk are moving around now—probably a good thing if watching for Wolves. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Trumpeter Swan

Trumpeter Swan: Taking off at the National Fish Hatchery. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Raven

Raven: These birds are active all over the valley, especially around carcasses. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Red Fox

Red Fox: Seen along the Highway this morning. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mouser

Mouser: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mtn. Goat

Mtn. Goat: Taken in the Snake River Canyon. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mtn. Goat

Mtn. Goat: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mtn. Goat

Mtn. Goat: There were around 30 Mtn. Goats on the hillside when I got down there. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mtn. Goat

Mtn. Goat: Nikon D850 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

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March 9, 2018 Friday

New Feature Post: Winter Landscapes 2018

Bighorns

Bighorns: Seen on the National Elk Refuge. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Immature Eagle

Immature Eagle: Eagles are feasting on Deer and Elk carcasses around the valley right now. Watch for clusters of Ravens and Magpies in trees and flying around a small zone. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Valley Barns

Valley Barns: Captured as a band of light hit the barns and structures. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens, Handheld.

Valley Barns

Valley Barn and Fences with recent snow: Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens, Handheld.

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March 8, 2018 Thursday

The Grand

The Grand: Early morning in Grand Teton National Park. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm Lens, Handheld.

Swans and Duck

Swans and Duck: Steaming, 7°F morning at the Kelly Warm Springs. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Moose Cow and Calf

Moose Cow and Calf: These two were making their way to the Gros Ventre River Bottom. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Moose Cow and Calf

Moose Cow and Calf: Crossing a side channel of the Gros Ventre. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Moose Cow and Calf

Moose Cow and Calf: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

First BluebirdFirst Bluebird: I spotted three or four Mountain Bluebirds feeding on an exposed hillside south of town this afternoon. Keeip and eye out for future waves of the Spring birds. (This is a tight crop of a distant shot) Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

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March 7, 2018 Wednesday

Bighorn Ram

Bighorn Ram: Captured along Miller Butte on the National Elk Refuge. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Bighorn Rams

Bighorn Rams: These are two of the four Rams close to the road today. Others were grazing in the open areas south of the road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Bighorn Ram

Bighorn Ram: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Preening Trumpeter Swan

Preening Trumpeter Swan: Taken along Flat Creek. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mallards on Thin Ice

Mallards on Thin Ice: Captured on the partially frozen pond north of the Visitor’s Center on North Cache. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Reflections

Reflections: Also taken at the Flat Creek Wetlands pond. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Wildlife Notes: A few friends have been keeping me updated on the Mountain Goats in the Snake River Canyon. So far in March, they haven’t been coming down. That’s typical after heavy snowfalls. Wolves have been active on the National Elk Refuge, causing the Bighorns to (often) stay on Miller Butte and not along the roadway. Foxes have been spotted off and on, but may be moving to different hunting zones after the heavy snow. Owls have been scarce again this year. I haven’t heard of River Otter sightings in a while. Eagles, Hawks, and Kestrels have been more common subjects.

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle: Seen on Spring Gulch Road this afternoon. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Magpie and Carcass

Magpie and Carcass: Seen along the Highway. Nikon D850 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Sleeping Indian

Sleeping Indian: Last of the evening light. Nikon D850 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

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March 6, 2018 Tuesday

Sunrise

Sunrise: Taken from the National Elk Refuge as the low clouds thinned.

Trumpeter Swans

Trumpeter Swans: Taken at the National Fish Hatchery. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Secret Entry

Secret Entry: Elk are still making their way onto the National Elk Refuge. This one found an opening in the fence at the National Fish Hatchery. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mt. Moran

Mt. Moran: Captured along the East Boundary Road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Shadows

Shadows: Long shadows over the fresh snow. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Sage Tops

Sagebrush Tops: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Roundabout

“Safety Improvements with Gros Ventre Roundabout Begin in April. Travelers Should Expect Delays.” More info: Click Here. Click the map to view it much larger.

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March 5, 2018 Monday

Black-billed Magpie

Black-billed Magpie: I spent some time in the back yard today. Magpies were the star of the show. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Black-billed Magpie

Black-billed MagpieNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Black-billed Magpie

Black-billed MagpieNikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Red Squirrel

Red Squirrel: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Black-capped Chickadee

Black-capped Chickadee: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Tripod.

Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens Notes: Most telephoto lenses have a “Focus Limiter” switch for Full and Distant. The G2 has three: Full, Distant, and Close. When I am working in my blind, I set the limiter to Close which limits the focus search to 7.2 ft to 32.81 ft. This negates the need and time for the lens to search for subjects past 32.81 feet. It’s a very nice feature!

The Visitor’s Center at Moose is now open!

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March 4, 2018 Sunday

Belted Kingfisher

Belted Kingfisher: These are extremely difficult birds to photograph. They are masters at flying the split second before you are ready to press the shutter button. This one was hunting small fish over Fish Creek near Wilson. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Snow Covered Ford Truck

Snow Covered Ford Truck: This shot, captured along the Village Road, shows the 12-15″ of fresh snow our area received over the weekend. I’ve been mentioning the valley is having a low snow year, but a recent story in the JH News and Guide said the mountains and other nearby regions are actually above average. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

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March 3, 2018 Saturday

Morning in the Valley

Moose Sculpture

Moose Sculpture: We had 4-8″ of snow overnight and snow off and on all morning. This sculpture is at the National Museum of Wildlife Art. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mule Deer Doe

Mule Deer Doe: I was about ready to head home but decided to drive up Spring Gulch Road where I found a small group of Mule Deer feeding on the hillsides. A couple of Bull Elk were feeding higher up, plus I saw two Bald Eagles and a couple of Hawks. As far as I know, no one has seen a Great Gray Owl on the road this year. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mule Deer

Mule Deer: Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Winter Horse

Winter Horse: Also seen on Spring Gulch Road. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mail Boxes

Mail Boxes: I’ve photographed this row of mail boxes from other angles. The piles of snow and falling snow gave this one a different look! Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Hansen Barn

Hansen Barn: I’ve photographed this old barn a lot of times. The fresh snow covered old tracks and horse manure in the corrals, and it accentuated the roof. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

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March 2, 2018 Friday

Bull Moose

Bull Moose: This morning offered a lot of potential. I went out to Kelly since I hadn’t been there in a while. There were numerous herds of Elk north of the Gros Ventre Road. I am not sure if they are migrating towards the National Elk Refuge, or venturing off of the Refuge? I had a chance to see a couple of Wolves near the Warm Springs, but was a little late for their road crossing. The Wolves definitely had the attention of the Moose—spooking them to move to different areas. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Cross Fox

Cross Fox: I finally found this Cross Fox, but it wandered back into the Spruce trees and not towards the road. I took this “record” shot to document the sighting. I hung around quite a while, but it never reappeared. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Coyote

Coyote: This Coyote was hunting in the hay fields north of Kelly, but was also a bit farther out than I would have preferred. Low clouds covered the Teton Range (and the setting full moon), so I wasn’t really in “landscape” mode. I heard of a Bighorn carcass on the National Elk Refuge and an early morning sighting of the dark gray Wolf. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Potential?: I mentioned at the first of today’s post that today had a lot of “potential”. I was there, but the animals didn’t get close, or I couldn’t get closer. If I had all day to sit around, the wolves may have reappeared, or maybe not! Today’s entry simply illustrates that some days are better than others.

Feathered Fridays

Feathered Fridays: Remember, the Raptor Center shows off four raptors each Friday from Noon to 2:00 pm at the Visitor’s Center on North Cache.  I took these four shots last Friday.

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March 1, 2018 Thursday

Sooty Wolf

Wildlife Notes for Early March: With the recent snows, it looks like most of the Elk and Bison have finally made it to the National Elk Refuge. Still it’s a light snow year and some of the Bull Elk have moved back north to the Gros Ventre River area. Coyotes, Raven, and Magpies are on the Refuge feeding on Winter kill carcasses. Moose are seen much less often in the sage flats and appear to be moving back to the river bottoms—generally scattering into the valley. Mountain Goats have been scarce lately, but I expect good activity in March. Bighorns are still visible on most days on the National Elk Refuge. Eagles and Great Horned Owls should be on nests soon. Watch for flocks of Cedar Waxwings and Pine Grosbeaks feeding on the remaining crabapples, choke cherries, and Mountain Ash berries. There have been occasional sightings of Wolves and even a Mountain Lion around the valley. The cold nights have been freezing most ponds and slow moving portions of the streams. Swans and other waterfowl adapt as necessary, finding open water zones. Rough-legged Hawks are seen regularly on Spring Gulch Road and along the Elk Refuge fences and power poles.

As always, the first few days of a month often resemble the last week or two of the previous month. Check out the photos and comments on February 2018 Daily Journal for JH & GTNP

Winding Spring Creek

Early Spring? : In the south, especially around the town of Jackson, the first hints of Spring are already appearing. I’ve seen a couple of American Kestrels and at least one Red-tailed Hawk along the Highway. In many years, I notice the sign at Oxbow Bend is covered completely by snow. This year, about half of the sign is still visible. There’s still a lot of snow in the north, but less than what I think of as normal. Other than a few small critters like Foxes, Otters, and Coyotes, don’t expect to see a lot of wildlife up north for a while. To start the month, expect frigid early morning temperatures and sunrise around 7:00 am. The shot above was taken from the bridge near Jackson Hole Lodge in GTNP. Nikon D850 and Nikon 70-200mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

For more detailed information about each month, check out Monthly Overviews for JH / GTNP .

Park Opening: The Craig Thomas Visitor’s Center at Moose opens with shortened hours on the 5th of March.

Full Moon Rising

Full Moon Rising: I took this one last night from my driveway. If clouds don’t obscure it, the next day to two may be good for catching the full moon set over the Tetons. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Mallard Duck

Mallard Duck: Captured in Flat Creek during a light snowfall. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Sooty Gray Wolf

Gray Wolf: I am fairly sure this is the Wolf people have been calling a black Wolf, seen the last couple of days on the National Elk Refuge. A gray colored Gray Wolf was there a few days ago. The Bighorns were ALL on the top of Miller Butte and keeping an eye on this predator. I’d like to be there as she crosses the road! This was taken at a distance of around 100 yards.  Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Stretching Swan

Stretching Swan: Captured on Flat Creek. Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

Eclectic Sign

Eclectic Sign: This sign on North Cache illustrates the effects of warming days and freezing nights!  Nikon D5 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 Lens, Handheld.

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Comment (1)

  1. Wesley Jones

    Thanks again for a great guide to Jackson Wildlife. My wife and I left every early this morning and following your information spotted 23 Moose before 9 am. Most where located on lower Gros Ventre Road. We found 13 in one group. We also spotted a great Horn Owl, and a number of hugh Hawks. Later in the day, we drove out on the Elk Refuge and was treated to 1000s of Elk and a large group of Bighorn Sheep. Thanks again for your guidance. WES AND RUTH JONES

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