Bison, Big Horn Sheep, Moose, Elk, Coyote, Deer, and a very curious Crow. Every turn I took another animal would be grazing in the fields, resting on the hills, or traversing through the snow! I was blown away by just how many animals were out and about on a foggy morning in the Tetons. With so few people in and around the parks, the big grazing animals like moose, bison, and elk can roam freely where people usually gather. The elk preserve is packed with elk during the winter months as herds of elk march out of the hills seeking respite from the encroaching winter. Food resources are still scarce but water continues to flow in the valley adjacent to Jackson. Horse-drawn carriage rides are available at a price to take you into the herds and up close with these beautiful creatures. A much safer approach to meeting these wild animals. I chose instead to stay in my car and head to the back roads east of town. There I happened upon several small herds of elk. Continuing east, hills and cliffs rise off the valley floor. There, several dozen mountain sheep roamed the steep cliffs. Big horned rams rested on the thin outcrops overlooking the road, standing guard as the sheep grazed on slopes beyond.
As I continued north, moose roamed near the river and through the dense thickets of cottonwood and poplar trees. A lone cayote scouted a small outcrop, and deer rested under low hanging branches and near the sides of homes. I met a very curious crow, at the Snake River Overlook, who posed perfectly for me as I snapped photo after photo! Moving further north towards Oxbow bend and Cunningham cabin, herds of bison grazed in fields west and east of the road, with some even grazing just feet from the road.
The weather was brisk. Fog rested across the valley in the morning hours. Temperatures ranged from 5-18 degrees F. After having been cooped up for a week because of catching Covid, this was just what I needed to clear my head and heal my soul. The day was perfect! Full of life and incredible beauty. The Tetons never cease to amaze me!
Here are pictures from the trip! Enjoy!