April starts the spring thaw and with spring comes road openings. It can be a mystery box of opportunities in Yellowstone, as it seems each year the snow levels are completely different and the “activity” goes hand and hand with the amount of snow.
I find April to be another good month to find and photograph wolves, as well as the first really good month to find a photograph both black and grizzly bears. Some years I spend time birding the migration in April, but in years like 2012 there were far too many wolves and bears to photograph to find time for the birds… next year maybe.
Some things happen in Yellowstone that humans do not get to see, and some things happen that seem so magical and rare that they could never happen again…this is the latter, or so some thought.
I made my way towards an overlook to watch a carcass that belonged to the Canyon Wolf Pack and waited, lucky for me the wait was short before the Alpha Female made her way to eat and then surprised all of the photographs when she approached us to drink from the Gardiner River. After she left four photographers stated that; “I bet no one have ever seen or photographed something so amazing before or will ever again.” I smiled because I had, but let them leave with their “once in a lifetime” shots. The next morning I was back in the area, waiting some more, when the Alpha Female reappeared ate and then approached the much smaller group of photographers and drank again, within about 20 meters of where she had drank the night before. Here is the photographing proof that “lightning” can strike the same place twice.
The “first” time, in the evening
The following morning
Okay...maybe I found time for a few birds
And some scenics.