Yesterday evening, we knew we were enjoying the last of the warm sunshine during our sunset hike for an arctic blast was jetting toward us. Sleek R enjoyed the kiss of warm sunshine on his fur.
The animals near our house were on the move over the past 24 hours. The coyote with a leg wound (you can't see it in this photo - but it appears to be healing) visited our clearing in the middle of yesterday afternoon.
I've noticed in my coyote, bobcat, mountain lion, and bear wildlife camera photos that canines prefer to trot while cats and bears prefer to walk when traveling through their homeranges. The coyotes in the above photos are trotting - which means that each pair of diagonal limbs (e.g., right front and left hind) moves in sync. I think that it's interesting that different species seem to prefer to use different gaits when patrolling their territories.
This bobcat, photographed last summer in the same spot as the two coyotes above, is walking. You can tell because his left forelimb and right hindlimb are not in sync.
As the temperatures started to plummet early this morning, a rabbit hightailed it across the heavily used carnivore path, doubtless trying to avoid the fate of the rabbit in the bobcat's jaws shown above.
To those of you who expressed worry about my predilection for taking on challenges in the forest, there is one small consolation. I carry a device called a "Spot" that allows me to use GPS satellites to send a "911" message that includes my GPS coordinates. So, if I'm ever in serious trouble, I can use that option. But, I would never use it just because I'm tired (like the other day). It's reserved for true emergencies like a broken leg that prevents me from moving.
Here's to winter's return! May our fire keep burning warmly and our wildlife survive the next few nights. Let's all stay warm!