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Friday, April 15, 2011

A snowshoe hike and wildlife flurry

We are drinking up the spring snow, knowing how it is nourishing our forest. Yesterday evening, we took a peaceful sunset hike. The snow had a firm crust on top that the dogs could float on if they walked softly. K spotted this ledge that overlooks our meadows and padded out to the edge.

She gazed over the meadows for a few moments, and then backed away from the edge, still walking delicately to float on the snow crust.
First thing this morning, K and I headed out for a leisurely snowshoe hike because the snow is too deep and soft for snowbiking. I love meandering through the woods with my K as the sun rises.
K did lots of snow wriggling. That scratchy snow crust must feel wonderful on a dog's back.
After each wriggle, she shook, and my camera caught her with a crazed look on her face!
The snow crust was very strong. Although I needed snowshoes, K stood, walked, and ran atop the crust.
As the sun rose higher in the sky, the bluebird color shined intensely. K peered off a boulder as she played.
At the end of our hike, K gazed into my heart. Her eyes mesmerize me.
Later, I visited some of my wildlife cameras. I expected no photos because, usually, the animals stop moving around during and after big snow storms. Not this time.

Two elk cows walked under a huge Ponderosa Pine tree that mountain lions love to mark. In fact, a hulking pile of mountain lion scat sits just on this side of the tree. Funny, the elk didn't seem concerned. The photo shows one of them standing around sniffing the area as our snow storm was starting.
Here's the most recent mountain lion visit to the same spot, to give you a sense of perspective about the sizes of these animals.
Later in the night that our snowstorm hit, a rare event occurred. A mule deer doe visited our clearing and stood under our bear-proof bird feeding station. We haven't had a coyote visitor in more than a month. Perhaps that's why the deer visited recently while almost no deer have ever ventured into our clearing in the past.
Then, yesterday evening, a bobcat walked past one of my wildlife cameras, delicately walking atop the snow crust. Based on the blur in the photos, I think that he was moving fairly quickly.
Finally, a bobcat walked through our clearing last night. This was probably the same cat as my wildlife camera photographed earlier in the evening at the start of his patrol.
For so soon after a big snowstorm, that was a veritable flurry of wildlife activity!


  1. Love K on top of the boulder, she's so athletic and beautiful....and what great wildlife shots!
    Thank you for sharing the beauty of your life!

  2. I guess you have to be thankful for the moisture the snow brings. We are supposed to get a rain snow mix tonight. I love the shaking K photo.

  3. Gotta love that crazed look:) K is acting as happy about all this snow as your voice sounds. We hope you get more too. And you know we love her eyes too.

  4. Hi Y'all,

    The snowshoe hike sounds like something my Human and I would enjoy. K looks very cautious out on those boulders.

    Y'all really did have a flurry of activity. Perhaps it is because it is spring and mating instincts are alive and well. The longer days probably tell those animals that the snow will be short lived and temperatures are moderating.

    Here in the southeast birds are mated and nesting. Soon youngsters will be venturing out of the nest.

    Y'all come by now,
    Hawk aka BrownDog

  5. Uh K, be careful not to fall off that boulder! And wow, a mountain lion AND a bobcat! Love the image of K walking across the snow crust.

    Your pal, Pip

  6. Beautiful wildlife. We heard you are getting hit with another snowstorm. Crazy
    Benny & Lily

  7. Wonderful pics and it gives me the chance to go look at yesterday's elk video a couple more times!

    Sadly all this snow is affecting Fargo and much of North Dakota with flooding, we got a few inches tonight and Mary said 6" for them in Bismarck. They sure don't need snow as much as you guys do!

    Cheers and hugs,

    Jo and Stella

  8. I love those pictures of K! That one of her looking over the boulder is gorgeous. I think you're right about getting to that spot where you just feel a certain connection and understanding.

    You have such a great mixture of visitors!

  9. K has the most incredible eyes! And we think that R is more the black leather type than zebra!

  10. Love the wild party animal look you've caught on K's face.

  11. Hey KB, I noticed the tracking collar on the cougar. Is your game department doing a study on them?

  12. I love the photo of K in mid shake. It's very different from her usual composed stoic self. Still lots of snow there, I see. Are you have a few warm days mixed in yet? Have a great weekend!

  13. The photos take our breath away...

  14. Love the photos of K in the snow!

  15. Love the crazed look of K! I love how she seems to see past your body and deep into your soul. Amazing photos!


  16. Love the crazed look of K! I love how she seems to see past your body and deep into your soul. Amazing photos!


  17. I love upsidedown K, crouching K and gazing K. I think you love eachother!!

  18. I don't typically like spring snow falls (not even when we lived in Alaska) but your photos and adventures in it could change my mind! :-))

  19. Some pretty crisp snow there! Makes for a clean backdrop for K to roll and play!
    Have your wildlife cameras always been so active? It's amazing what goes on, and who is captured on film!

    Sweet hugs,
    Sierra Rose

  20. K's crazy look is cute as hell :)

    That blue sky color is unreal, for sure.


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