Tetons and Drive South
Yesterday we drove the loop through Grand Teton NP. revisiting sites we had seen and done several years ago. We saw LOTS of people. Far more than we remembered from last time and we are only three weeks sooner this time. Saw some wild life (Buffalo, pronghorns, elk, coyote, badger, and maybe some others) and LOTS of people.
What we did not see too well were the mountains. Smoke from fires in Oregon and Washington had blown two states east thick enough to greatly reduce visibility of the mountains that dominate the view from anywhere in the park.
The smoke was so thick that when I took a picture down the valley the camera said the scene was back lit. All it saw was a wall of white.
This morning as we were heading south I made a small error. There are two roads through the park. One is faster and less scenic (except for the ever present mountains), the other about the same length but slower due to twists and turns. I was day dreaming and took scenic road. No big deal. Early in day so traffic not bad. It was going to be though. As we drove by the southern entrance station the line of cars to get in to the park was nearly a quarter mile long. A little further on the scenic road joins the faster road. About 300 yards before the junction, the scenic road crosses the Snake River. As we approached the bridge we saw cars parked along side the road, a gaggle of people at the far end of the bridge, and more cars parked off the road. In a national park that is a sure indication of wildlife. We drove slowly across the bridge and looked where everyone else was looking. A moose. Not just a moose but a MOOSE. Just past the bridge I was able to pull the carbus and toad off the road and park so we could walk back to bridge. We saw a number of moose on our trip to Alaska but this guy was BIG.
Pictures do not begin to give justice to size of this guy. Antler span was 5 or 6 feet.
Had we taken the other road we would have missed this experience completely by less than 200 yards.