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Glacier National Park

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Offline jeffblaylock

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More photos from Glacier
« Reply #15 on: September 23, 2006, 03:22:58 PM »
Sorry for the delay in posting more photos. All 900 or so of them are in the "camera RAW" format, which means they need to be pre-processed before I can edit them in Photoshop. Anyway ...



This is Mt. Wilbur reflected in mirror-still Swiftcurrent Lake. I was told it was very unusual for the winds to be calm, at any hour, in this part of the park.

The next several are from my 15.6-mile dayhike from Logan Pass to my campsite at Many Glacier via the Highline Trail, Granite Park, and Swiftcurrent Pass.



The early portion of the Highline Trail offers a handhold cable for the faint of heart. That's Going to the Sun Road directly beneath it.



After about 7 miles, the trail reaches Granite Park. The famed Granite Park Chalet -- a sort of backcountry, hike-in hike-out hostel -- can be seen on the ridgeline about a third of the way in the frame from the right.



A mile past the chalet, you reach Swiftcurrent Pass and begin a joint-breaking 2,200 foot descent in just 8 switchbacks.



If you can tear your eyes off the valley, you are treated to a nice view of Swiftcurrent Glacier. Though the wind was not blowing that day, you can see from the trees that it blows often and hard.

Now for some animals:



A moose looks for aquatic vegetation in a shallow portion of Bullhead Lake. A storm was hammering the Continental Divide above me and to my right, so a stiff breeze was blowing down onto the lake, causing that weird reflection in the water.



A group of bighorn sheep passed by me as I was hiking in nearby Waterton Lakes National Park. There were seven sheep in the group, but my camera was naturally drawn to the kid.

Finally, what everyone is waiting for, some bears:







Now, I've been trying to convince myself that these are black bears, but I have some doubts, especially after looking closely at the yearling's round face. I didn't get close enough to them to check their IDs, and it's sometimes hard to tell black bears from grizzlies in the wild. Nevertheless, I'd rather call them black bears until an expert convinces me otherwise.

More to come ...
Jeff Blaylock
Austin, Texas

"We'll be back, someday soon. We will return, someday, and when we do the gritty
splendor and the complicated grandeur of Big Bend will still be here. Waiting for us."--Ed Abbey

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Offline Casa Grande

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Glacier National Park
« Reply #16 on: September 23, 2006, 03:28:00 PM »
that is soooooo sweet!  nice job, Jeff.  I am intrigued at how surreal the higher levels of elevation looks. I wanna go, thanks for adding more to my cup that allready flowith over.   :lol:

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Offline JeffB

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Glacier National Park
« Reply #17 on: September 23, 2006, 04:51:44 PM »
Incredible photos.  I love the ones you posted back on Sept 14th, especially the one of Grinnell Lake and Angel Wing.

Looking at my filed guide, I can't identify the bears either.  According to National Audubon Society the black bear has "3 pairs of upper incisors equal in size" while the grizzly bear has "outer pair of incisors larger than inner 2."  You should have taken a very close look at their teeth.  Perhaps you could identify from the bite marks.
Jeff Bullard
Dallas, TX

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chisos_muse

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Glacier National Park
« Reply #18 on: September 23, 2006, 05:51:21 PM »
Quote from: "JeffB"
Incredible photos.  I love the ones you posted back on Sept 14th, especially the one of Grinnell Lake and Angel Wing.

Looking at my filed guide, I can't identify the bears either.  According to National Audubon Society the black bear has "3 pairs of upper incisors equal in size" while the grizzly bear has "outer pair of incisors larger than inner 2."  You should have taken a very close look at their teeth.  Perhaps you could identify from the bite marks.


 :lol:  :lol:  :lol:

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Offline Roy

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Glacier National Park
« Reply #19 on: September 23, 2006, 06:40:29 PM »

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Offline jeffblaylock

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Glacier National Park
« Reply #20 on: September 23, 2006, 08:38:26 PM »
Quote from: "The Other JeffB"
Perhaps you could identify from the bite marks.


Like I often say to my hiking partners when such situations arise ... you first.

The claws are also a dead giveaway, but none of the photos of this pair show their claws. If I had let either sink its teeth or claws in me, there'd be no doubt as to what kind of bear they are .....

Roy, as to the posted link, I don't believe in pepper spray, because (1) you have to be really damn close to the animal and (2) you have to be upwind. I carried a nautical air horn, which works from any distance and will discourage any grizzly or black bear thinking of charging you. And I sure as hell don't believe in bells. They might prevent a bear encounter, but they'll also make sure you don't see any other wildlife, either. So, I shuffle my boots a lot in bear country and carry an air horn in grizzly country.
Jeff Blaylock
Austin, Texas

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splendor and the complicated grandeur of Big Bend will still be here. Waiting for us."--Ed Abbey

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Offline Al

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Glacier National Park
« Reply #21 on: September 23, 2006, 08:57:30 PM »
Jeff, beautiful photography!  Thanks for posting.

Al

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Offline RichardM

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Re: More photos from Glacier
« Reply #22 on: September 25, 2006, 01:40:33 PM »
Quote from: "jeffblaylock"
Finally, what everyone is waiting for, some bears:

http://www.jeffblaylock.com/window/photos/1021.jpg

http://www.jeffblaylock.com/window/photos/1023.jpg

http://www.jeffblaylock.com/window/photos/1022.jpg

Now, I've been trying to convince myself that these are black bears, but I have some doubts, especially after looking closely at the yearling's round face. I didn't get close enough to them to check their IDs, and it's sometimes hard to tell black bears from grizzlies in the wild. Nevertheless, I'd rather call them black bears until an expert convinces me otherwise.

Hmmm, my guess would be that they're grizzlies, based on the face profile and what looks like a shoulder hump on the momma in the first pic.  The ears are a lot bigger than what you normally see on grizzlies, according to most sites I've seen.  Unfortunately, I have zero experience viewing bears in the wild.  I'd recommend posting the pics over on the Yellowstone Loon page as there are several bear experts who hang out there.

Here are a couple of bear info sources I found:
http://www.mountainnature.com/Wildlife/Bears/BearID.htm
http://www.bearsmart.com/bearFacts/

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Offline Undertaker

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Glacier National Park
« Reply #23 on: September 25, 2006, 01:53:34 PM »
Jeffs Idea would work, just make sure you can outrun your hiking companion. 8)

I agree with Richard, having seen both in wild, my guess would be Griz do to moms hump, although this could be angle of photo. Black bear do not exibit the hump, color has nothing to do with discription. Again be faster than your companion. A guy with no pack and running shoes is faster than a guy with a pack and hiking boots. Or you could try singing to the bears like the expert from CA.   :shock:

Beautiful photos, keep posting.
Visiting BB since 1966, nothing like being lost and finding heaven.

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Offline RichardM

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Glacier National Park
« Reply #24 on: September 25, 2006, 03:45:54 PM »
And don't forget the time-honored way of differentiating between black bears and grizzlies:  Climb a tree.  If the bear follows you up the tree to get you, it's a black bear.  If it knocks the tree down to get you, it's a Grizzly.

And with regards to bear bells, how do you tell the difference between black bear and grizzly bear scat?  The grizzly scat has bear bells in it.  :)

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Offline jeffblaylock

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« Reply #25 on: September 25, 2006, 09:35:03 PM »
Thanks Richard, I've posted a couple of photos to the Yellowstone Loon chat page.

The ears certainly look more like a black bear, but that yearling's face is very round for a black bear. I'll see if some experts weigh in on the ID.
Jeff Blaylock
Austin, Texas

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splendor and the complicated grandeur of Big Bend will still be here. Waiting for us."--Ed Abbey

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Offline RichardM

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Glacier National Park
« Reply #26 on: September 25, 2006, 10:11:10 PM »
Quote from: "jeffblaylock"
Thanks Richard, I've posted a couple of photos to the Yellowstone Loon chat page.

The ears certainly look more like a black bear, but that yearling's face is very round for a black bear. I'll see if some experts weigh in on the ID.

So far the unanimous consensus seems to be black bear.  Several of the responders live up there in bear country and see 'em all the time, so I'd go with that.  Either that or they're hybrids!   :shock:

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Offline jeffblaylock

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Glacier National Park
« Reply #27 on: September 26, 2006, 09:49:40 AM »
Yup, consensus is they're black bears. That, or they're polar bears in cognito and on the lam from sabotaging BP's North Shore pipeline.
Jeff Blaylock
Austin, Texas

"We'll be back, someday soon. We will return, someday, and when we do the gritty
splendor and the complicated grandeur of Big Bend will still be here. Waiting for us."--Ed Abbey

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Offline jeffblaylock

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Glacier National Park
« Reply #28 on: September 27, 2006, 02:49:49 PM »
I'm slowly publishing the long-winded trip report on my website. I'll save Casa Grande's bandwidth by posting links to my bandwidth. For those interested, here's the report:

Prelude - Dashing Through 4 Canadian National Parks
The First Day in Glacier
The Big Hike
A "Day Off" Following that Big Hike
Grinnell Glacier and the Ram
Of Icebergs and Cold Water
Where the Prairie Meets the Mountains
Epilogue - Lessons Learned
Jeff Blaylock
Austin, Texas

"We'll be back, someday soon. We will return, someday, and when we do the gritty
splendor and the complicated grandeur of Big Bend will still be here. Waiting for us."--Ed Abbey

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chisos_muse

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Glacier National Park
« Reply #29 on: September 27, 2006, 03:18:20 PM »
Quote from: "jeffblaylock"
I'm slowly publishing the long-winded trip report on my website. I'll save Casa Grande's bandwidth by posting links. For those interested, here's the report:

Prelude - Dashing Through 4 Canadian National Parks
The First Day in Glacier
The Big Hike
A "Day Off" Following that Big Hike
Grinnell Glacier and the Ram
Of Icebergs and Cold Water
Where the Prairie Meets the Mountains
Epilogue - Lessons Learned


Thank you, Jeff. Personally I like the link option better too....not that I need it because you know I visit your site daily anyway! :lol:

 


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