Wildlife, Yellowstone National Park
It's not exactly wildlife, but when I was in Yellowstone, I took a lot of photos of the trees. Mostly because there are a lot of trees in Yellowstone. When I labeled my photos, a lot of them were labeled "more trees", or in some cases "lodgepole pines" or "forest". My dad thought it was sort of funny that I had so many pictures of trees and that was even though my grandmother wouldn't let me upload all of them to Picasa
On the Circle of Fire tour, the guide told us that the trees never decayed like in most places - they fall over and just lie there forever. He also told us that there were only a few tree species in the park The most common is the Lodgepole pine which is tall and straight reaching up to 75 feet in height. Some American Indians used it to make frames for their tepees or lodges, hence the name. In thick groves, only the tops of trees have branches because sunlight can't reach down the trunks far enough.
There are also Engelmann spruce and subalpine fir that make up the other 20 percent of Yellowstone's forests.
Not a lot of people were on this part of the trail. I was a bit worried because we are in bear country and I had no idea what to do when I would encounter one. So I took some precaution and made a lot of noise. This Elk didn't seem to bothered by it. The trail made a sharp turn and right behind a big rock this Elk was resting. It startled me for a moment, I didn't expect to see any wildlife after all the noise I was making.
Just a few of the animals we saw on our winter adventure. Our cameras couldn't capture the wolves, but we saw them, and some pine martens and river otter along with so many bison, elk and coyote we stopped oohing and aahing for them.
The road in this area of the park follows the Yellowstone River and it allows you unlimited views of the valley. If you are lucky, you'll see lots of wildlife...we happened to see at least 3 herds of buffalo roaming the fields.
Its a national park and although there are plenty of hiking trails and a paved vehicular road, it still feels as though you're off the beaten path. Driving down the road, you suddenly see several parked cars and, out in a clearing, a herk of elk, moose or other wildlife.
Near Lake Yellowstone, one can closely observe squirrels, as they seem to be familiar with park visitors.