DAY THREE - Thursday, June 25


SLIM PICKINGS

The temperature is 52 degrees at 4:50 as I head out in a light rain.

A pretty fox crosses the road just before Barronette

With the Lamars seemingly headed out towards Cache, I am not surprised to see no activity in the Soda Butte and upper Lamar Valley. I stop at Slough when I see Lizzie. She has 970 on the south side of the road above Crystal. The misty rain isnít helping visibility but I do see her for a moment (sheís black) just before she goes over the top.

Laurie & Dan arrive and set up their scopes. Laurie sees a gray coming downhill in the general area where 970 was. Perhaps itís 911? But she loses him quickly so we never find out.

We decide to head to Blacktail. Chloe and Becky are here at S Curves. They had a grizzly earlier but he disappeared. No wolves.

We return to Slough where Lizzie now has 911 signals to the south. So that makes it fairly likely that Laurie did see him this morning. We look and look but do not find him. We do see bison, elk & pronghorn.

We continue to look for Junctions without luck.

Some people have gone on to Hayden but I think we are now too late. Itís a frustrating morning so we head back to Silver Gate. I take a long nap and makes me feel great. Around 7PM I head back out, hoping to see the Lamars return from Cache.

I stop at Footbridge where I find both Bill W & Jeff. I tell them I am going to Confluence hill and we agree to call each other if we see anything.

Everyone has noticed an unusually heavy blossoming this spring of yellow sweet clover. Itís everywhere and smells heavenly. Unfortunately, it is considered an invasive plant and may be bad news for the native grasses here. But itís really pretty.

I park at Geriatric and prepare my backpack. Once Iím up fairly high I see a visitor named Richard (from Nevada) whom I have seen many times watching wolves. I join him and we scope above Confluence, determined to be the first to see the Lamars return. Betsy joins us a bit later. Dorothy and Linda stay a bit lower on Geriatric with a good view of the rendezvous.

Itís a beautiful evening and a great way to spend time, but we remain wolfless. Instead we see many bison, including some loud grunters, and lots of sandhills. We also watch some pronghorn drama Ė looks like one of them is deliberately causing trouble, dashing sharply towards its neighbors, being a nuisance. The other pronghorn seem to want to avoid this one,

We also see a coyote peeking out from a log at some bison. I wonder if the coyote has a den under that log? And we see plovers (sandpipers) and lots of birds and ducks. The confluence is always full of animal activity.

On the drive back I am amazed at the birdsong. There is an astonishing variety of bird serenading going on this spring.

TODAY I SAW: birds of all sorts, bison, ducks, a coyote, sandhill cranes, elk, a fox, pronghorn, 1 wolf (970F of the Junctions) and the spirit of Allison.




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