Trip report - last day

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    Posted by Andie ( on July 08, 2005 at 00:29:11:

    We are up early Sunday, wanting to be at the construction “gate” on the east entrance road when it opens. We have given some idle thought to possibly driving all the way home today. It is 6:40 when we leave the cabin, 38 degrees F and cloudy.
    We see a couple of elk near Canyon and then startle two deer (and they startle us as well).
    There are bison in Hayden Valley, of course, and we stop at a couple of pull outs and scope for bears, but see none. We drive a little way south of Lake, still looking for that sow grizz with the cubs, but see nothing except another deer crossing the road.
    We cross Fishing Bridge and see two pelicans in the river, and then head east. We stop at Indian Pond to take some pictures, where the sun, clouds, and water are doing some wonderful things.
    As we continue east along Mary Bay, we are lucky beyond belief. Just where the road runs close to the lake and begins to turn and climb into the trees, there it is – a grizzly right at the water’s edge, eating something that has apparently washed up on the lake shore. We pull over and park not more than 30 yards away. The food appears to possibly be the carcass of a calf of some kind – the bear is standing over it and with his back to us, so it is difficult to see. A raven wants to share the feast and keeps venturing nearer, but as he gets too close the bear turns and puts his body between the raven and the food. This is repeated several times while we watch. There are only a half dozen other vehicles here with us watching. It is so quiet. We would like to stay all day, but finally the road beckons, and we reluctantly move on.
    As we start the climb to the forest, it begins to rain, and so it has rained on us every day of our stay in Yellowstone. But we have had a wonderful time in spite of that. The gate is open when we get there at 8:05 and we are on our way home. It is hard not to be impressed by the scenery in Shoshone Canyon, even in the rain. Before we know it, we are through Cody and then driving among the red hills north of Tensleep. There are different flowers blooming this weekend. On our way east through the Bighorns, we twice see moose. As we take I-90 through eastern Wyoming, we again encounter pronghorn. We drive through South Dakota till dark.
    On our last day we have seen two elk, three deer, hundreds of bison and pronghorn, two moose, and one last, glorious grizzly!

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