Spring in Yellowstone & Grand Teton National Parks

Red-knaped Woodpecker in Flight, Beartooth Mountains The first leg of my trip to USA has now finished and we have moved on to Alaska. While I managed to take many and varied photographs in Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks my Internet connection wasn’t sufficiently strong or stable to allow for anything other than the odd e-mail.  Instead, I’ve put together a selection of photographs, which I hope to upload shortly. In the meantime, I’ve uploaded some representative images from Grand Teton and Yellowstone.

Update: a gallery of photos from trip can be viewed here

Our first few days were spent around Jackson (Wyoming). We visited all of the usual favourite locations in Grand Teton National Park along with some of the more photogenic areas just outside of there park proper. The wildflower meadows at Antelope Flats were a mass of colour with Arrow-root Balsam, Mules Ears, Penstemons, Skyrockets, Lupins, Paintbrush, etc. The scene really looked quite spectacular with the Teton mountain range as a backdrop.

Wild Flower Meadow, & Grand Tetons, Grand Teton National Park

Wild Flower Meadow, Grand Tetons, Grand Teton National Park

Our day tends to start quite early, and on two occassions we were up and out by 4.30am. This allowed us to capture sunrise although the lack of clouds meant that the spectacular colours we had hoped for didn’t materialise. Nevertheless, some very nice images were captured. The following shot of the Teton mountains reflecting on the still water of the Snake River at Schwabacher’s Landing is a particulr favourite.

Teton Sunrise, Schwabacher's Landing, Grand Teton National Park

Teton Sunrise, Schwabacher’s Landing, Grand Teton National Park

After a few days we moved on to Yellowstone National Park. As is usual when we visit Yellowstone we based ourselves in West Yellowstone. The town and park were both very busy with much larger numbers of visitors than we expected, and it was extremely hot. Early morning was best as the park was quiet and lighting much better for photography. Also, during late spring and summer the steam and mists coming off the rivers and hot springs burns off quite quickly. The photograph shown directly below was captured just after sunrise.

Morning Mist, Madison River, Yellowstone National Park

Morning Mist, Madison River, Yellowstone National Park

The Upper Geyser basin (location of Old Faithful) is another early morning favourite and the following image of Geyser Hill is a particular favourite from our visit to the area.

Early Morning, Geyser Hill, Upper Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park

Early Morning, Geyser Hill, Upper Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park

One of the most disappointing aspects of this trip was that the herds of Bison and Elk normally found along the Madison River were missing. Fortunately, we eventually located a huge herd of Bison in the Lamar Valley. Elk were much more difficult to find, but we did manage to find a few. Other sought after wildlife in Yellowstone are the bears, namely the Grizzly Bear. Again, fortune was on our side and we came a across a cub playing in amongst the wild flowers high up in the Dunraven Pass.

Playful Grizzly Cub, Dunraven Pass, Yellowstone National Park

Playful Grizzly Cub, Dunraven Pass, Yellowstone National Park

Mammoth Hot Springs is another popular location, but on previous recent visits we had noticed that the thermal pools and springs were becoming less acessible as they moved further from the boardwalks. This next image is virtually all that remains accessible at the upper section of Canary Spring.

Upper Camary Spring, Mammoth Hot Springs, Yellowstone National Park

Upper Canary Spring, Mammoth Hot Springs, Yellowstone National Park

After best part of a week based in West Yellowstone we moved across to the south side of the park to Cooke City. From there we had easy access to the Beartooth Mountains.

We had two visits up high up into the mountains via the Beartooth Pass. These gave us plenty of opportunities to photograph the wild Mountain Goats that roam high up in the mountains, and the wild flowers.

Mountain Goat, Twin Lakes Overlook, Beartooth Mountains

Mountain Goats, Twin Lakes Overlook, Beartooth Mountains

Gardner Lake Overlook, Beartooth Mountains

Wild Flowers, Gardner Lake Overlook, Beartooth Mountains

As with our previous spring trip to the Beartooth Mountains we had arranged to meet up with a local wildlife photographer. He had sought out many good nesting sites for birds such as: Wrens, Red-naped Woodpeckers, American Three-toed Woodpeckers, Great Gray Owls, Great Horned Owls, Mountain Bluebirds and few others I can’t recall the names of.

Wren in Flight, Beartooth Mountains

Wren in Flight, Beartooth Mountains, Wyoming

Red-knaped Woodpecker in Flight, Beartooth Mountains

Red-knaped Woodpecker in Flight, Beartooth Mountains, Wyoming

American Three-toed Woodpecker, Beartooth Mountains, Wyoming

American Three-toed Woodpecker, Beartooth Mountains, Wyoming

Great Gray Owl, Beartooth Mountains, Wyoming

Great Gray Owl, Beartooth Mountains, Wyoming

Images are GPS tagged and edited in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom CC 2015

** Disclaimer** Above images are quick previews specifically for this blog so that family and friends can see how things are going.

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