Special to the Village News
After being cooped up for over a year and a half due to COVID, we were itching to take a trip and feel the vibes of wild nature. So, we flew to Jackson Hole, along with many other people who had the same idea, apparently. Everything was booked full, and prices were sky high, but it was well worth it because we got the opportunity to view the gorgeous natural mountain streams, lakes, and ponds, and witness wild animals in dramatic action.
It was the rutting season, and many of the animals were dingy and oblivious to people. We were driving into Mammoth Hot Springs, the northern entrance to Yellowstone, and we witnessed a giant bull elk on the grass in front of the visitor's center. He was showing off to the grazing females. He suddenly put his nose in the air and let out his shrill bugling call.
The ranger came up in his SUV on his bullhorn shouting "Get back in your vehicles!" In an effort to drive the elk away from the collecting cars, he honked the horn. The elk turned, pawed the ground, and made a lightning-quick charge and slammed into the side of the vehicle, breaking off a piece of his antler. My daughter caught this event on video through our car window.
We also took great effort to get up early every morning to see moose, bear cubs eating hawthorn berries in the trees, buffalo, and antelope. The aspen trees turned fluorescent yellow within three days!