American Bison | a 7 Image Story The American Bison, also call Bison Bison, is our National Mammal and symbolic of the Great Plains. The largest land animal in North America; at one time millions roamed the grasslands of North America from Alaska to Mexico in massive herds. Today, small herds are maintained in several parts of Canada, as well as several states in the USA. Many national parks also keep Bison. With approximately 5,000 animals, Yellowstone NP has North America’s largest population of wild Bison and is the only place in the United States where bison have lived continuously since the prehistoric times of the last ice age.
Capturing wild Bison images usually means a trip to a national or state park. These images come from Yellowstone, Wind Cave, and Badlands national parks. Good clicks come relatively easy. The Bison are usually standing around; like they’re waiting for you to make a click. A good telephoto lens is really required though. Getting too close is not only bad form, but can be detrimental to your health. These beautiful animals are wild and unpredictable. Keep your distance.
A few Bison facts: Bison are year round grazers requiring water every day. They eat primarily grasses, but will also eat flowering plants, lichens, and woody plant leaves. In the winter, they sweep their heads from side to side to clear the snow. Bison grow a thin layer of soft fine hair and a thick outer layer of course hair. In the spring, they shed their heavy winter coats. A mature Bison stands 5-6 feet tall weighing 1,800 to 2,400 pounds. They have cloven hoofs, and can reach speeds of 30 miles per hour. They prefer to graze in the morning, rest, ruminate (chew cud) in the middle of the day and then graze again in the evening. Bison communicate through grunts with each other and sometimes snort to warn intruders. They have excellent hearing and smell, but relatively poor eyesight. Baby bison, called “red dogs,” are orange-red in color for a few months until their hair begins to turn dark brown. Their life expectancy ranges from 15 to 20 years.
Each of the 7 images represent a crop I’ve use from time to time. Each image will be posted individually this week with a bit more narrative under category American Bison.
Click any image below for a slide show!
Ski Plane Weekend | J-3 Cub on Skis The J-3 just landed on the grass runway covered with snow. Taxiing in heavy snow and around snow drifts on a windy day requires sharp skills for a ski plane pilot. To see the entire story with all seven images, go to Ski Plane Weekend | a 7 Image Story.
Ski Plane Weekend | Piper J-3 Cub on Skis Rick, our fearless leader, taxis toward a takeoff run on a beautiful day with nice snow. To see the entire story with all seven images, go to Ski Plane Weekend | a 7 Image Story.
Ski Plane Weekend | C-185 on Skis This Cessna 185 made a beautiful landing on Lake Sapphire. After some coffee, a warm up, and engaging hangar flying, I was fortunate to hitch a ride back with Steve, the pilot and owner. He had recently completed an engine overhaul himself; aren’t all bush pilot’s also A&Ps as well as CFIIs. Well, maybe not, but Steve let me fly a bit. His C-185 wears skis in the winter, floats in the summer, and tires in between. I tried to do some air-to-air photography from the copilot’s seat. Next time, I’ll use the back seat and perhaps I’ll get better shots. To see the entire story with all seven images, go to Ski Plane Weekend | a 7 Image Story.
Ski Plane Weekend | a 7 Image Story Usually, the lakes are frozen and there’s plenty of snow for the annual Ski Plane Weekend. Some of the finest pilots from around the country take leave from their heavy iron and bush flying to gather together on this weekend to fly ski planes just for the fun of it. This year, it’s a bit different. Northern Michigan had a big flaw, which melted most of the snow. The best we could fly was a Super Cub on tundra tires. Let’s look back to earlier years.
Although some pilots bring their planes with skis, mostly we fly the Piper J-3 Cub on skis and the Piper PA-18 Super Cub on skis. Most pilots love to fly both planes. The skis add a bit of spice to life in the winter. Add a snow shower and we pilots have dreams of being a bush pilot. And, they have sticks, not a yokes. They bring us back to the basics; no moving maps or no retractable gear; in fact, the J-3 does not even a battery. Yep, you have to hand prop it. The Cub’s standard chrome yellow paint known as “Cub Yellow” identifies it as one of the best known aircraft of all time.
Each image will be posted individually this week with a bit more narrative under category Ski Plane Weekend.
Click any image below for a slide show!
Husky Dogsled Party | Huskies Love Snow Huskies love pulling a dogsled on a new trail. They love to run and play in the snow. They seem to instinctively know that they should pull a dogsled. To see the entire story with all seven images, go to Husky Dogsled Party | a 7 Image Story.
Husky Dogsled Party | Let’s Go Faster What a great day! These guys are having the most fun they’ve had in months. What could be better than a beautiful day, fresh snow, and a nice trail? To see the entire story with all seven images, go to Husky Dogsled Party | a 7 Image Story.
Husky Dogsled Party | Thru a Husky’s Eyes Well yes, only the lead dog gets a clear view of what coming next. The lead dog must scout the terrain, break a new trail, choose exactly where to run, make sure the ice is not too thin on rivers and lakes, and much more. Only the smartest, well-trained dogs get the honor of leading the pack. To see the entire story with all seven images, go to Husky Dogsled Party | a 7 Image Story.