"There is nothing so American as our national parks. The scenery and wildlife are native. The fundamental idea behind the parks is native. It is, in brief, that the country belongs to the people, that it is in process of making for the enrichment of the lives of all of us. The parks stand as the outward symbol of this great human principle." Franklin D. Roosevelt

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Day Off

With the day off again I drove over Dunraven Pass and over to Mammoth. Not much to report from that drive as far as wildlife goes. I stopped at the Yellowstone Association bookstore and bought a book about Native American History in Yellowstone. It will be an interesting read when I finish the book I am currently reading about grizzly bears.

I did a load of laundry this afternoon. I won't go into much detail about that since, as you probably assumed correctly, was rather boring and mundane. But clothes get dirty in Yellowstone, as they do elsewhere, and it is a chore that must be done.

After dinner I did my nightly drive to Hayden Valley and watched a couple herds of elk and some solitary bison. I decided to once again tackle Dunraven but I first got to drive behind a bull bison who meandered down the road in my lane in front of my car. I do believe that they know exactly what they are doing and rather enjoy stopping traffic behind them. Oh well, I'm in no hurry.

Once on Dunraven Pass I stopped at an overlook that I refer to The Caldera Overlook. There is a sign there that is sort of a map that shows a person where the rim of the caldera is when they look out across the landscape. The Grand Tetons can also be seen from there. And it was also my good fortune to see a huge grizzly bear down the mountain from me digging through the snow (grizz sightings: 23). This was my first opportunity to actually snap a few photos of a grizzly with my 35mm. I also got some great video of him pushing and pulling the snow around. My video comes complete with the auditory of a family pleading with their mother not to hike any further down the mountain toward the bear.

I have been aware for quite a few years that people may read the warning brochures handed out by the park service but there are quite a few who disregard the warnings. When a bear or a bison can charge a person at 35 mph it doesn't take many strides for them to reach someone. Sometimes I do wonder exactly who the intelligent species is.

The new person who was supposed to start today.........well, didn't start today. He actually called in sick on his first day!!! He had that notorious sickness known as the 'booze flu'.