Salle Englehart, WRF’s Vice President, was kind enough to email me this report from Aug. 27 (or 28?). People are seeing the Agates. Kathie Lynch told me the same.
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Wolfwatching on Dunraven
by Salle Engelhardt
Yesterday I was given the day off and decided to take my brand new 10×42 binoculars out and see how well they work for my needs in the Park. They were as good as any spotting scope I have used.
I originally wanted to go see the now famous grizzly sow with the four cubs again but was not able to catch up with her while I was on the mountain. There were also four black nears near the Dunraven Trailhead but I never saw them either. I concluded that it was a wolf watching day instead so I went down the northern slope and parked about halfway down.
Within minutes I spotted a big black wolf on the eastern edge of the floodplain on the valley floor. Moments later there was a large gray that emerged from the deep creek bed, wandered over to the shady spot where the black wolf lay, they “talked” a moment and the gray went off in a northwesterly direction.A few minutes later a French couple showed up and wondered at what I was watching. As we sat on the edge of the grass and talked about the wolves, sharing my bino’s, I decided that I didn’t really know enough about this pack so I cheated, I called Ralph from a cell phone and asked him about the pack. While I was speaking to Ralph, several other wolves emerged from the creek bed until there were seven of them visible. Three blacks, four grays. One gray is so light that its whiter parts look alabaster in the sunlight, another is so dark that it looks like it has light dappling on a dark, almost black, background. the other grays look silvery in the sun.
I was able to sit and watch for almost three hours. As I watched, many tourists stopped to watch too. Most didn’t have sufficient lenses to see well so I shared mine with most of them. A couple folks with spotting scopes arrived off and on, they were very willing to share their scopes also. Never met anyone who wouldn’t share a scope.
It seems that most wolf watchers are plenty excited to have others see the wolves so they can share in the joy of it. Many said that using the better lenses so they could really SEE the wolves well enough to feel confident that they really are wolves certainly made their day, some said it made their whole trip to Yellowstone complete. A few commented that it was great to KNOW that the wolves are there but it’s many times more exciting to actually be able to catch just a glimpse of them for confirmation. Others said that the wolves were what they drove, for days, to see.
It’s certainly good to know that the people who do stop to watch are fascinated with the idea that something has been “put back” to they way it should have been, even though it can never be just as it was or would have been without human interference.
Until my next venture into the Yellowstone…