Over the coming days I am going to be posting some images here from my Ultimate Winter in Yellowstone workshop that I led with Doug Gardner. We just finished up the workshop and are now filming an episode of Wild Photo Adventures here so I have a little time in the evenings to finally catch up on going through the THOUSANDS of photographs that I took on this workshop. . .
The highlight of the workshop, even more exciting than the wolves, was a bobcat that we photographed along the banks of the Madison river in the interior of Yellowstone. We first spotted this guy from a distance as he hunted along the banks of the river. No sooner had we spotted him than he slipped from our view beneath the snow covered bank. Watching the reactions of other wildlife in the area however gave his position away as well as the direction that he was heading. You see, bobcats love waterfowl. So naturally, every duck and swan along the river made some sort of noise or reaction to his presence as he trotted along. This in turn let us know exactly where he was and exactly where we needed to be.
Hopping back into the snow coach we raced down the trail to where the river swung back in near the road. Piling out into the snow, we pushed our way through 3 feet of snow down the slippery banks and set up in such a way so that the bobcat would come walking right out around a bluff of snow and straight toward our lens. This was a gamble of course. The cat was 100 yards away and completely hidden from us save for the ducks we could see that were acting nervous.
In a matter of minutes however, we spotted the tips of the bobcats ears briefly and new he was basically right on top of us. Sure enough, as I had planned, he strolled right out in front of our lenses.
This was an unbelievable situation. Bobcats are NOT easy to find and photograph. Yet here we were, eye level with this cat, in deep snow, gorgeous light, and he was coming right at us!