Thursday, October 26, 2017

Elk in the Evening

It was a spur-of-the-moment decision to drive to Pennsylvania’s elk range to get some photographs of elk during the rut. It was a quick decision since I’d originally planned to go later in the week. But the weather forecast wasn’t too favorable for either elk activity or yours truly.

It had been too darn hot for early fall so it wasn’t too surprising that there were no elk to be seen in the afternoon. They spend the heat of the day in the shade of the forest, especially in woodland along the streams draining the higher open ground where they feed.

We were on “The Saddle”, part of a reclaimed strip mine, an area where I’ve gotten many of my best photographs of elk. There’s an old road on the flank of the hill that gives a good view of a small basin and the woodland below.

As the shadows lengthened and the temperature began to drop a few elk began to emerge from the forest, cows and calves came first –

The bull that had assembled this small band of cows and calves soon followed –

The bull bore asymmetrical antlers that are often called non-typical, but they were impressive nonetheless. He began to slowly feed, presenting a good opportunity to take some video

This bull is habituated to human visitors because he spends time on Winslow Hill, the heart of Pennsylvania’s elk tourism. I wasn’t alone on the old road on The Saddle; there were other photographers there also –

The photographic opportunities were good on The Saddle, but I prefer a more remote spot – that’s where I plan to be the next time I go to elk country.


The Furry Gnome said...

Great video! Wouldn't you think it would be uncomfortable walking around with that on your head?

Rambling Woods said...

I was thinking what Furry Gnome said...I will have to look up where this is in PA as we travel into central PA to see my daughter...Loved the video...Michelle

Lady Fi said...

Wow - magnificent creatures!

Kay L. Davies said...

Wow. We used to have elk around here (Medicine Hat, southeastern Alberta) but I haven't seen any for a while. (Of course, that doesn't mean there are none, it just means they don't want to be seen.) So I enjoyed your photos very much.
An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

eileeninmd said...

Hello, it is cool seeing the elk. I have seen them out west and the males are just gorgeous. Wonderful photos and video. I should find out where this park is and visit some day. Thanks so much for linking up and sharing your post.
Have a happy day and new week ahead!

A Colorful World said...

Glorious creatures! They are so impressive and I loved your photos and video!