As he walked across the street, I remember saying out loud, “That is a really big raccoon.” Even saying it now sounds foolish. I think a part of me knew that it wasn’t a raccoon, but where I come from….there are just some things you don’t see.
When I got closer, I started smacking the passenger seat shouting, “it’s a bear…it’s a bear…it’s a bear”. The zone was not impressed. She looked out the window and her curiosity did heightened just a tad, but there was a barrier between her and him. Let’s just say that she didn’t care near as much as I did.
I pulled over as far as I could so I could get a picture. This decision….well, it was not one of smartest moves I’ve ever made. Not because of the bear. When it comes to wildlife like this, I’m a little bit more fearless than what I should be. No, it wasn’t smart because where I chose to stop. I mean after all, I was in the mountains rounding a curve and there wasn’t any real place to pull over. Had someone come flying around that curve…well, it could have ended badly. Luckily, the powers that be were on my side. Especially, since I was bound and determined to get that picture. I’d been waiting a long, long time for an opportunity like this.
Years ago, a couple of friends and I went to the great Smoky Mountains. As her and I were hiking, my other friend stayed back at the car (he couldn’t hike as far as we could and we were chasing waterfalls). While there, he had struck up conversation with another hiker who told him about the bear he had seen earlier that morning. I was jealous, I wanted a picture of a bear….no, I wanted to take a picture of a bear.
I wanted to see it in its natural habitat not locked up in a concrete enclosure (we had seen that on one of our expeditions to the North Carolina side. It was heartbreaking). I wanted to see a real life bear. Close up. Wild and free. Now yes…bears are dangerous and you should be careful. Wildlife is unpredictable. I know all this and I’m not completely daring, but I am the fool that will see how close she can get. Do not try this at home.
Anyway, back to the point and my little brown bear. Ever since that day in Tennessee, being able to take my own picture of a bear has been on my bucket list. So, when I saw this little guy walking across the road and realized that it was not a raccoon….I was like a kid in a candy store. Absolutely ecstatic.
By the time I got situated and out of my car, he was already off and down the hill and on his way. Thank the man for who invented amazing lenses and the bear’s curiosity. Not only did I get pictures of a little brown bear….later in my trip, I’d meet another baby too.
Have a beautiful day and tomorrow.
Montana Rose Photography