Trail Cam Excitement
August 2019

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For several years now, we have had many sightings of a black bear who moves into the area around late August.  The bear seems to enjoy the berries and apples that grow along the walking path we use almost daily.  We have coexisted peacefully with that bear for years, enjoying the excitement of an occasional sighting.  With that black bear in mind, we set up our trail cam in one of the apple trees along our walking path.  This tree is about 2 feet off the trail 600 yards from our house.   

Imagine our surprise when we checked our trail cam results and found 75 photos of a Grizzly sow and her two cubs.  I know, some of you will protest, "Grizzlies don't climb trees!"  But this limb we are watching is leaning at an angle that makes it as easy to climb as a steep hillside.  Also, it's an apple tree that was totally loaded with apples, so there's some good incentive there. 

We avoided the area for three weeks, then came back to check our trail cam footage again.  This time we had what might be a different set of Grizzlies (the 8/23 mamma bear looks much wider to us than the 8/13 bear did.)  Also some black bears, including one great big one, and coolest of all - a mountain lion!  This trail cam stuff is fun!  

Also included are other fun trail cam sightings from this month: a cow elk with her baby; our neighbor mule, Gilbert; a raven; and some deer.  

 Check out the claws on momma bear!  This tree leans at an angle so it is really easy to climb.  







This photo captures all three of them.  Baby #1 in the far lower left, Baby #2 beneath the tree, with Momma Bear's butt front & center.
I wonder if she picked apples and tossed them down to the babies, or just let them fend for themselves.  

 In this shot she was making her way back down.  Notice it's only 9pm here. I have taken walks
 alone with Buddy recently at this time of day, thinking it was too early for bears to be out.  
 Another shot of those menacing claws This one gives a look at the eyes.  I hope that via a photograph is the only way I ever see grizzly eyes!  



This is 10 days later.  Cub 1 is already in the tree (you can see the paw at the top), and 
Cub 2 is on the way up.
Then 40 minutes later, we get shots of this great big griz hauling it's rather large butt
up for some apples.  

 Look at the size of that bottom!  


Those claws! Yikes!  
Here is a mother elk and her baby, passing by on the trail.



Next we find photos of some black bears.  It looks like one small bear and one very large 
bear, at a minimum.  Maybe two different large ones?  


A black bear cub, scratching it's butt on the branch!  

We are going to measure the distance from the ground to that sideways branch so we 
will get a better idea for the actual size of these bears. 
Notice how bold they are about being out & about in the middle of the day.  
This big bruiser was messing around & moved our trail cam.  We thought that was bad
news until we found that the camera was now in the perfect position to catch shots of
this awesome mountain lion below.  Too cool!  
I never realized before that there were so many things that could kill me living 600 yards from my house.  
 This makes me wish we'd have switched it to video mode!  
Those were the highlights, here are some other shots just for grins. 
This goofy raven ate up a bunch of our shots, flitting about posing for the camera. 
Our neighbor has 2 sweet horses and Gilbert the mule
grazing in this area.  Gilbert is a true character!  
I'm supposed to be learning the many, many names for the different kinds of 
racks you see on deer.  It's like the Eskimo with all their names for snow. 
These two are basket racks?  4 by 4s?  I forget...

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