My Labor Day seemed to go quite quickly yesterday.
We had lots of rain and thunderstorms throughout the park, and keeping power on was becoming an issue. Yesterday morning at 6:10 AM most of the park was completely without power. Having to be into work at 7:30 and with the power coming on and off making things in my apartment beep off and on….. I got up a little early. Just to sit in the dark and get ready in the dark. I came in to open the Visitor Center and found it had no power. Thankfully at 8 am the power came on, and kinda stayed on. Plus, it was helpful not to have many visitors either.
About 8:30am I saw two bull Bison making their way through the parking lot and people running at them to get a closer picture. (People make me shake my head.) So began my morning with walking outside to put the weather up and instead having to yell/remind people that it’s not the best idea to run at a wild animal that is 10 times bigger than you. The Bison heading down the trail at a quick pace and I knew they were heading toward the bridge. I decided quickly to try to beat them to the bridge and began running. (It’s not easy running in that big flat hat and having a radio and bear spray on your hips.) Thankfully my co-worker was driving by and gave me a short lift and dropped my off so I didn’t have to run the entire way. I stopped and gave instructions to people on the bridge to get off of it….. and they answer me with “HOW?”. Well folks, if you could just turn around and walk back the way you came from?
Thankfully everyone made it off the bridge, the Bison crossed safely, and only gave visitors the stare down for a few minutes. I then ran back to the Visitor Center but heard on the radio about a missing woman, and side tracked into the General Store across the street to look for her. She ended up being in the car waiting for her very concerned husband. Finally I went back to the Visitor Center to work a little bit longer before heading off onto the next thing!
As the season has been winding down, we have begun to lose some of Rangers and yesterday, we ended up being short-staffed. Most of the time we only have one big program to do a day, but I got to do two yesterday. I won’t complain too much though because I saw the neatest thing! I was driving down the road, heading to lead the Storm Point two hour, 2.3 mile long hike, I saw a wolf in the road in front of me.
MY FIRST YELLOWSTONE WOLF!
I’m kinda excited about it.
It was trotting down the road in front of me and I saw it cross in front of me and head into the woods. I knew that with the direction it was heading I was going to see it again; if it was on the trail in the woods, or it was going to pop back into the open. I made it to the trail head for the hike and very excitedly spoke with the visitors who were there. After about six minutes I realized everyone on the trail in the field was pointing at something. Sure enough, the wolf came out and crossed the road again. From our vantage point we couldn’t tell where it went and people began walking into the trees (seriously?!?!) and again I had to remind them to back up. The wolf did come back into the clearing and gave the visitors a stare down before taking off.
I also had a really fun time catching the tiny Boreal Chorus Frogs in the trail and leading them to safely off trail.
My group members thought it was fun too!