Corene had been going through severe dog-withdrawal the whole week, so by this point she was basically pouncing on any dog available to give them scratches and belly-rubs.
Also by this point, we were looking for Bankhead, which led to a few lovely sights but also required quite a bit of hunting.
But we eventually found the area. Here are just a few shots:
And as a palette-cleanser, have a baby squirrel:
Invasion of the grizzly and bighorn sheep as we were leaving Jasper, headed for Banff:
Part 2 of the day in which we saw all the animals.
On our way down from Maligne Lake, we decided to stop at Medicine Lake.
It was just around this time when a busload of people stopped by to ask us if we were taking shots of the bear.
“Bear?” I asked.
See if you can spot it in the far right here, before I’d been aware of it:
And then the bear turns up.
Oh wait, you thought it was just one bear? Nah, it was a whole bear family. Bear families turned out to be all the rage that day.
Oh hey, guess what was at that same lake?
This, my friends, was the moment when I finally felt justified in that trip. The whole time we kept seeing signs alerting us of caribou crossings, but naught a single one. It was like a hoax. And then he showed up, and all was right with the world.
Aaaaaaand pretty soon it was a day filled with really cool sights and other wild animals. I should point out I didn’t manage to take pics of the majority that we saw, which should tell you how many they were.
Again, Corene with her animal soundtrack
I’d like to think Corene deliberately picked the soundtrack in anticipation of every animal we spotted. Like before, and like so:
Please do not get out of your car for a bear. Please especially do not get out of your car for a mama bear and cubs.
And then we saw our first bear. Up in a tree. In the rain. It was wet.
We carried on to Maligne Lake.
And then a whole slew of bears from thereon out.
So many cubs.
Corene somehow always knows to play the most appropriate soundtrack for each wild animal we spot.
This is merely part 1 of the day in which we saw allllllllll the wild animals. Part 2 coming up. You’ll see further proof of Corene’s animal soundtrack sense.
Jasper, on the whole, is a Stephen King novel of a town stuck in the 1970s.
Oh hey, have some hastily-taken pics of elks:
And as a bonus for sticking with me this long, here’s Miss Corene in a hat:
It doesn’t count as a cowboy hat if it has a flower on it.
We were determined to ride on horses and so we found some! And you thought we were merely making friendly conversation with Australians.
This is the horse she ended up riding! Aw, look at that beam. His name is Jackpine.
And then the reality of the situation struck her:
It’s going to be okay.
We encountered three elks during our ride. One of them had a collar, and our guides advised us to be careful with the collared ones as “they get wary.” No kidding. If someone shot you down with tranquilizer darts, put a geek collar on you so that all the other elks made fun of you, and continued to stalk you every so often in order to note your progress, you’d get a little paranoid yourself.
During the final part of the ride, Jackpine decided he’d had enough of riding second to Sox and me. After a brief hissy-fit, he took first place and was content. I think we should’ve guessed the pecking order when, while still in the paddock, Sox automatically lined up behind Jackpine. And Jackpine was only drinking water at the time.
This one’s for you, Jackpine. This one’s for you.