YNP and GTNP 7/15-25

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GreatGrayOwl
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Joined: Fri Jul 28, 2017 6:10 pm

YNP and GTNP 7/15-25

Post by GreatGrayOwl » Sat Jul 29, 2017 4:16 pm

Really missed this site before and during our trip! Glad to have it back now.

I didn't take detailed notes and my memory is always flaky, so this won't be a day-by-day tr. Just a partial list of sightings and comments.

Most of the trip was about hiking--with our 5yo, who logged more than 30mi! That included the Chittenden climb up Mt Washburn and the Pelican Valley out-and-back to the washed-out bridge. This kid'll be tackling the Thorofare in no time! Also did some fishing several mornings from Gull Point (had to walk a bit as much of the road was closed for high water) and Pumice Pt, as well as a rented boat from Bridge Bay. Caught... nothing. But it was fun trying.

Notable sightings in YNP included a cinnamon black bear on the grand loop just north of Gull Point, early am (like 0715) and coyotes and porcupine along the road, same general area, same time of day (different days).

Loads of female and young bighorn sheep up near the fire tower on Washburn--they seem to be reliable there.

Lots of just-missed-it bears and wolves in Hayden and Lamar, all very distant. Another just-missed-it 3-pack of wolves along the east entrance road, just before sunset. (Forget exact location--east of Sedge Bay.)

Lake Hotel area was reliable for bull Elk and big male mule deer in the crepuscular hours.

Had an extremely close on-the-trail encounter with a bison on the Storm Point trail. We had to step aside--in thick timber--to let it pass. Marmots plentiful near the beach-head on that trail. Also fresh griz tracks in the sand.

Pelicans and beaver from fishing bridge and along Pelican Creek.

In GTNP Schwabacher's Landing was good for muskrat, beaver, osprey and even moose at dusk. Moose also at the Moose-Wilson overlook. All moose seen were cows. Saw a young griz--apparently solo--in the woods along Moose-Wilson too, near the Rockefeller preserve. Note that the gravel part of the road is closed for a few days for dust mitigation. (Not sure when that ends/ed.)

Pronghorn along many major roadways in and around Jackson. And the rural country roads around town just at and after sunset are, as always, productive for great horned owls (I lost count) and porcupines. But my decade-long quest for great gray owl continues...

Altogether another amazing trip to the greatest place on earth. And we're just thrilled that our son enjoyed it as much as we did.



GreatGrayOwl
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Jul 28, 2017 6:10 pm

Re: YNP and GTNP 7/15-25

Post by GreatGrayOwl » Sat Jul 29, 2017 4:24 pm

Forgot to mention some grim news, though perhaps this is now over: in Teton both Pilgrim and Pacific Creek roads were shut down during our visit (earlier this week) while officials attempt to track down perp in a triple murder believed to be hiding out in that area or in adjacent national forest lands.

http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/sear ... nal-forest



mdtrot
Posts: 24
Joined: Tue Jul 25, 2017 7:57 pm
Location: East Texas

Re: YNP and GTNP 7/15-25

Post by mdtrot » Sat Jul 29, 2017 5:35 pm

Wow, I drove on both roads in June with my daughter. Terrible story.



Dorothy
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Joined: Sat Jul 29, 2017 7:45 pm

Re: YNP and GTNP 7/15-25

Post by Dorothy » Sat Jul 29, 2017 7:54 pm

Thanks for the trip report. I've missed this SO much! Sounds like you saw a lot, although wish you could get that pesky great grey owl to show up! We were in Yellowstone/GT in early June and managed to see quite a bit -- did catch 399 with her cubs in GT, a moose or two and some deer, elk and grouse, then in Yellowstone lots of bears (some with cubs), foxes, coyotes, bison (with babies), elk (with babies) and some adorable pronghorn babies. But SO missed having reports from others to check on -- I really appreciate you posting this, I feel like I'm back home again!

And where are porcupines common? We'd love to see a few next time we get up there (probably not until September).

Again, thanks for the report!



Bruce
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Joined: Mon Jul 17, 2017 9:18 am

Re: YNP and GTNP 7/15-25

Post by Bruce » Sat Jul 29, 2017 8:04 pm

Thank you for the report!


Owner, Yellowstone.Net
Personal website, brucegourley.com

GreatGrayOwl
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Joined: Fri Jul 28, 2017 6:10 pm

Re: YNP and GTNP 7/15-25

Post by GreatGrayOwl » Sat Jul 29, 2017 8:23 pm

Thanks for your reply. Not sure about common, but a good bet is along Spring Gulch Rd in Jackson. Watch for them along/on the road after dark. I saw 4 in one hour. That same 4-or-so-mile stretch is good for coyotes and is prime owl habitat. Seemed like one was perched on a fence post every 1000 feet or so, sometimes a pair together. All great horned. If you're lucky they'll come out before it's totally dark and start hunting the fields. The day shift is red-tailed hawk---I counted dozens just before dusk, then once the light failed (with a glorious sunset behind the Tetons), the hawks clocked out and the owl shift came on---a seamless transition!

That road is known as great gray habitat too but in my experience it's all great horned. The latter are smaller but more aggressive and I suspect they've driven away most of the competition. Wouldn't be surprised if a ggo turned up, which is why I always check, but...

FYI, the stretch I mean cannot be accessed at the moment from the golf course area, as there is bridge construction happening at the Gros Ventre River; you have to start at 22 in Jackson and drive from there. That's the stretch: from 22 up to the bridge.



Dorothy
Posts: 52
Joined: Sat Jul 29, 2017 7:45 pm

Re: YNP and GTNP 7/15-25

Post by Dorothy » Sun Jul 30, 2017 7:52 pm

Thank you! I don't think we've ever been up Spring Gulch Road, so I'll locate it and we'll try it next time we're up there -- porcupines, owls, coyotes -- can't go wrong with any of those! We're hoping to zip up there again in the next 4-6 weeks or so (are the berries ripening yet along Moose-Wilson?) and then go for our usual fall trip near the end of September -- or the first of October if the elk rut is still on. That would seem to be less crowded. Our situation makes viewing from the road more or less the only way we can see things, and in the height of tourist season (or even in the not-quite-height!) it's difficult to be able to find a place to park near any animal sighting. But this sounds like a good place to try. Thanks SO much! And again, thanks for the report.



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Mike
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Joined: Wed Jul 26, 2017 3:20 pm
Location: California

Re: YNP and GTNP 7/15-25

Post by Mike » Mon Jul 31, 2017 11:15 am

GreatGrayOwl wrote:
Sat Jul 29, 2017 4:24 pm
Forgot to mention some grim news, though perhaps this is now over: in Teton both Pilgrim and Pacific Creek roads were shut down during our visit (earlier this week) while officials attempt to track down perp in a triple murder believed to be hiding out in that area or in adjacent national forest lands.

http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/sear ... nal-forest

Last I heard is that there was a possible sighting(three days ago) in the Swan Valley area meaning that he might have backtracked to Idaho



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TNBob
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Re: YNP and GTNP 7/15-25

Post by TNBob » Mon Jul 31, 2017 7:36 pm

Thanks for report, glad you had a great hiking/viewing trip.
Great to see YNet Forum back running...I missed all the interactive posts.



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