Trip Reports: Fall 2010

yum.

yum.

Soaking wet, and probably loving it, considering the last 3 weeks of warm sunny weather.

Soaking wet, and probably loving it, considering the last 3 weeks of warm sunny weather.

Bear pull ups?

Bear pull ups?

Reminds me of a wet dog.

Reminds me of a wet dog.

A beautiful cloud at sunset over the Snake River.

A beautiful cloud at sunset over the Snake River.

A closer view of the cloud.

A closer view of the cloud.

My last morning in the Tetons did not disappoint. This was the view looking east, opposite the Teton range. Well before sunrise...

My last morning in the Tetons did not disappoint. This was the view looking east, opposite the Teton range. Well before sunrise, the sky is already on fire. 

The sun came over the horizon and lit up the Tetons.

The sun came over the horizon and lit up the Tetons.

Sunrise Panorama.

Sunrise Panorama.

After so many days of cloudless boring skies, it was great to see some dramatic lighting. 

After so many days of cloudless boring skies, it was great to see some dramatic lighting. 

A bull elk guarding over his cows. 

A bull elk guarding over his cows. 

A closer view of this large elk.

A closer view of this large elk.

Green and gold! what a great combination of colors.

Green and gold! what a great combination of colors.

One last look at the Oxbow bend on my way out of the park. Mt. Moran is just barely visible through the clouds. Very few leaves...

One last look at the Oxbow bend on my way out of the park. Mt. Moran is just barely visible through the clouds. Very few leaves left. 

Somewhere in the middle of Wyoming. Headed back to Colorado.

Somewhere in the middle of Wyoming. Headed back to Colorado.

Two weeks after leaving Colorado, I returned to find it practically winter already. This was sunrise high on the alpine tundra...

Two weeks after leaving Colorado, I returned to find it practically winter already. This was sunrise high on the alpine tundra in Rocky Mountain National Park. The conditions up there were absolutely amazing this morning. Temperature inversion was keeping the clouds stuck in the valleys. Longs peak had been dusted with snow overnight. When the elk arrived, and walked right into the scene, it became perfect. It was snowing pretty hard up here when I took this and a very push ranger was trying his best to scurry me off the mountain so they could shut down the road, but I wasn't about to leave until I made sure I captured this scene right. 

** This image is available as an exclusive limited edition fine art print **

This is the elk from the earlier photo. Not a very big bull, but he somehow managed to collect a pretty decent sized harem. The...

This is the elk from the earlier photo. Not a very big bull, but he somehow managed to collect a pretty decent sized harem. The snow coated Never Summer mountains provide the backdrop. Is it just me or does the lighting in this photo make it look like I took this photo of a museum diorama?

Stunning scenery.

Stunning scenery.

A week or so later I returned to the west side of Rocky Mountain National Park. A big snow storm was in the forecast so I started...

A week or so later I returned to the west side of Rocky Mountain National Park. A big snow storm was in the forecast so I started my drive in an attempt to get there before sunrise. This region of the park is one of the hardest pine beetle hit areas in Colorado. They have cut down a lot of the dead trees around the road to prevent this from happening, but theres no way to account for every tree. Before the sun came up I was dodging trees like it was a video game. 

As is typical with weather, things calmed down once the sun came up. Most of the animals in the area will be heading for lower...

As is typical with weather, things calmed down once the sun came up. Most of the animals in the area will be heading for lower ground by now, but the red fox thrives in these conditions. This one spent the morning hunting, very successfully I might add. It was great watching it hunt and play in the snow for almost an hour. It wad dead silent at this point, and there was no one else in the park... Maybe I was the only one dumb enough to run the gauntlet of falling trees? Either way it was a great morning. 

Ears to the ground, tracking its prey under the snow.

Ears to the ground, tracking its prey under the snow.

Great contrast between the orange fox and white snow.  ** This image is available as an exclusive limited edition fine art...

Great contrast between the orange fox and white snow. 

** This image is available as an exclusive limited edition fine art print **

This squirrel was busy collecting nuts during the storm. 

This squirrel was busy collecting nuts during the storm. 

I walked a ways into the woods to photograph aspen trees against the pines in the falling snow. It was so beautiful in there....

I walked a ways into the woods to photograph aspen trees against the pines in the falling snow. It was so beautiful in there. Perfectly silent, as well.

** This image is available as an exclusive limited edition fine art print **

What a great morning.

What a great morning.