Friday, June 8, 2012

Day 2: 2012 MPEG Yellowstone and Grand Teton NP Groupshoot

I honestly don't know if I could have planned a more perfect morning..... luck is good.

We left the hotel at 4:30am and made our way to Mormon Row for sunrise. Besides us, there were 6 or so other photographers there. We are all positioned in the sage brush across from the classic Moulton barn beside the pink house.

The sky is clear, the mountains are crystal clear and the stage is set for spectacular sunrise!

The light starts hitting the peaks and the shutters go off... I noticed a small herd of bison making its way down the row of barns and I jokingly said, "hey guys, come down here, we need you in the picture"....well, (like Dr. Dolittle) they did... they kept moving north and walking right into our picture as the light peaked.Unreal! We were all stunned as what are the chances? The bison in the picture was icing on the cake! Wait until you see these images.

then we scoot quickly to Schwabacher's landing for some nice reflections, then scouted the snake river overlook but the trees have grown so much, it obscures the nice S curve of the snake river.

We then stopped by Elk Ranch Flats and photographed the Teton horses in great light with the Tetons as the background. Breathtaking!

We then had a nice breakfast at Signal Mountain lodge, then drove over to the Chapel of the Transfiguration for some shooting. On the way, a cow moose and calf caused a jam, but they were in shadows and harsh light with everyone agreeing no photo op (but cool to see the calf) .

After stopping at the visitors center in Moose Junction, some members wanted to do some shopping etc. Jared and I drove around and found no wildlife worth snapping. We did stop by the Moran Junction osprey nest and some action occurred as we pulled up to the nest but light was very harsh so we left.

We went back to hotel to catch up email, rest some and started back out at 6:00pm.

I asked Jared to drop by the osprey's nest again just to see, by chance , if anything was going on. We pulled up and an adult was perched in a tree by the road and another osprey in the nest. I believe they have chicks but I didn't see them.

I photographed the adult in the tree..... and then it flew off, I watched him go south and told Jared to watch him (thinking he might circle back to the nest) as my view was blocked by trees. Jared said, "here he comes back".... I had to pick him up visually through the trees and just laid the AF point over where I thought he might land and lowered "the hammer"as he arrived..... I could only focus on him at the "last second when he came out of the trees. (see image in this post). It was over in 1-2 seconds.

We then moved north, no bears, few elk, stopped at Jackson Lake above Coulter Bay and snapped a red eyed (I believe a grebe) waterfowl but don't quote me.

We moved south back to Oxbow Bend for sunset (I wanted to do Lighttrac to prepare for sunrise in the morning there.)

After sunset, we headed back to the hotel and got in around 10:30 pm.

Tomorrow, another 4 am wake up call and sunrise at Oxbow Bend, then Jenny lake, String lake, and whatever else pops up... after lunch we will be heading to Yellowstone National Park for the rest of the groupshoot!

You gotta love these Parks..... It just makes you smile being here....

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