Elk Lake National Park

Today we go back to the National park and we will search for some bison and Moose. We are set for a few hours of exploring with a yummy lunch and lots of snacks. Even in the few days since we were here last the trees have changed a lot more. With  the mid morning sun on the trees it looks very peaceful.

Literally within a few minutes we come across a huge herd of plains bison.

There are quite a few Mums with juveniles ranging from last year to just born this spring. Even though some walk right in front of us, they seem very relaxed and hard to believe that if pissed off they can take off at 50km/ hour and charge. This bunch though just seems to be enjoying a morning munch. The plains bison are a bit smaller than the wood bison.
After some good encounters and watching them have a roll in the mud, we decide to drive to the other side of the park where there is a healthy population of Moose and the wood bison live. The park is divided in half to keep the two populations of bison separate and not interbreeding.

As we start hiking a gentle breeze picks up and we are being showered in autumn leaves from the tall stands of poplar trees, also called aspen here.


We think we strike a good balance of noise through conversation, to make the wildlife aware we are coming, but quiet enough for them to stay and not run away.

There is a great combination of chest high undergrowth which we think the Moose must really like and stands of taller trees.
We see lots of evidence of passing bison in the form of their poop and one grazing not too far from the track. There are several game trails traversing the path  heading to the edges of small lakes. We are sure these must be Moose trails and we do see fairly fresh Moose tracks on the path but no luck on a Moose sighting.
It is a great hike and we feel quite content with the day. When we get home the troops are ecstatic, running circles around us with joy. Even Chico has finally accepted André and takes a small piece of cheddar cheese as a treat from him.

It is a beautiful afternoon and quite warm so we sit outside on the verandah soaking up the last rays, however  there is no rest for a wildlife photographer as another large flock of geese is heard nearby.

After a while André returns with the last captures of the day.

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