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Showing posts with label WILDLIFE. Show all posts
Showing posts with label WILDLIFE. Show all posts

Monday, October 27, 2014

ELK at Cataloochee Valley, North Carolina 10/23/14

This is the first Bull Elk we saw when getting to Cataloochee.
George and I took a vacation last week with our good friends,  NEAL and Patti.  This is the fourth year we have taken an Autumn Vacation together.  The four of us have so much fun together --and each trip seems to get better than the last one!!!!!  This year,  we spent several days in Maggie Valley,  North Carolina.

We were on the go-go-go each day from 7:15 in the morning until about 7:30 at night.  We did a lot of 'leaf peeking' ---searching for pretty Fall Colors.  We traveled the Blue Ridge Parkway stopping at most every overlook.  We traveled the back-roads ---especially on Scenic Highway 215 between Rosman and west of Waynesville.  We saw WATERFALLS and Cascades (Yeah)... We took a nice hike each day.  We ate some great meals... We stayed in a wonderful motel/inn. AND the fellowship with friends was AWESOME....

BUT---if you put all of that aside, 'my' very favorite part was seeing the ELK at Cataloochee Valley.  We got there at the right time (early in the morning) in order to hear one of them 'bugle' loudly.  This is rutting/mating season ---and the males really like to chase the females ---and each male keeps a group of several ladies by his side!!!!!

We've seen the elk before --but this time,  we saw them THREE different times and in three different places during our visit there.  SO---since I love the elk so much,  I decided to share some ELK pictures with you today... Be sure to click on the pictures for enlargements.  Hope you enjoy them!!!!


"Hmmm",  Says Mr. Elk..  "That's a good-looking lady over there!" 



The pretty lady got up ---and took off!!!!  I heard her say,  "I don't want anything to do with him!"



She was smiling as she got away from him!!!



So dejected (see that pitiful face????)!!!!  "Why does she not like me?"



This young male was near the road where we were traveling... He didn't pay much attention to the people around ---and just kept on eating the leaves around him...






Another Bull Elk in another location later in the morning;  Did you know that Bull Elks can weigh up to 700 pounds??.  Their antlers/rack as I call it  can weigh 40 pounds... (Imagine the headache I would have if I carried those things... Yipes!)

 We took a hike to the Woody Cabin that morning after seeing the first group of elks.  The hike was about 2 miles round-trip ---and when we got back,  we found this group of elves.


This is sweet... This little lady was not running from Mr. Elk.   I think he gave her a kiss!!!!! 



She did get up --but he didn't seem interested --although she acted as if she was!!!!!!  What did Mr. Elk do instead of giving that lady some attention????????????????????????



WELL----I guess Mr. Elk was just too hungry ---so he ATE instead of entertaining the lady! Mercy Me!!!!!!



Then I saw it!!!! Mr. and Mrs. Elk AND little one!!!!!  See him/her??????



Then,  Mr. Elk left them and headed OUR way... Of course,  we were safely in/around our cars.  Luckily,  he wasn't paying a bit of attention to us.  SO--that gave us time to get some awesome photos... Like it????




Since Mr. Elk went the other direction,  we enjoyed watching all of the females and their little ones.  A female elk can weigh as much as 500 pounds...



Later in the day,  we encountered some female and baby elks again (near the school house).  There were about 15-20 elks in this group.  We were able to get fairly close --and I was amazed at the sizes of some of those females. 



Here's a cute little baby elk (called a calf).  These babies are usually born in May/June and weigh about 35 pounds at birth.  They are fed by Mama's rich milk --and will gain about two pounds a day.  By winter,  these little guys weigh up to five times their birth weight.  This one is not extremely young since he has lost his spots.  YES--they do have spots just like fawns do!



We enjoyed watching this  group of about 15-20 elks crossing the creek.  I loved watching the little one in my previous photo---who was one of the last ones to cross...  When he finally decided to get in that COLD water,  he 'quickly' hurried to the other side!!!  
Well---I could show you about 50 more pictures of the elk --but this is enough for now!!!!  All four of us really enjoyed watching them --off and on the entire time we were there.  Before you ask,  I will say that we were all very careful --and did NOT get near them, especially the big Bull Elks.   We KNOW that they can be dangerous --especially during rutting season!!!!!

Hope you enjoyed this post as much as I enjoyed writing it.  OH--what fantastic memories!!!!   If you ever get a chance to see the elk at Cataloochee,  DO IT....

Hope you had a great week.   We certainly did!!!!!

Hugs,

Monday, September 29, 2014

What Else did we Enjoy in the Smoky Mountains????

Early Morning in the beautiful Smoky Mountains in Tennessee
Well Friends,  It's almost October.... Can you believe it????  I thought I just wrote that it was September --just a week or so ago.  Time is FLYING... Mercy me---before we know it,  it will be Christmas... GOSH!!!!  Anyhow---welcome to AUTUMN.  It's my favorite season --so I hope we can enjoy it for SEVERAL WEEKS/MONTHS....

But today,  we're going back to SEPTEMBER 5, 2014 ---and talk more about our Day Trip to the Smoky Mountains that day.  This will be my third blog post talking about that daytrip.  If you missed either of the other two, click HERE  and/or HERE.   We had so much fun that day ---so I'm sure there will be more posts upcoming...

Today is a 'hodge-podge' post just showing you some of the other things we saw (besides the back roads, creeks, early fall colors and wildflowers).  Hope you enjoy these pictures.  Be sure to click on them for enlargements.


We walked across the new bridge at the Chimneys Trailhead to check out the water/cascades.



WOW---don't you love the sunbeams?  We had a mixture of sun and rain and clouds all during that day!



Beautiful and interesting SKY all around these mountains!



George standing at an overlook;  We were watching rain to the left and sun to the right!



Oh those gorgeous Smoky Mountains;  I could stay here all day --just looking!



A beautiful doe almost came up to us when we were hiking near one of the overlooks along Highway 441 between Gatlinburg and Cherokee.  She and her fawn actually followed us part of the way--and weren't as afraid as most deer are.



I love seeing the big puffy clouds...  Are they full of rain???????



Here is the cute little Fawn (with its spots) --who was following his/her mother  on that trail. 



Oh those beautiful Smoky Mountains!!! I love seeing all of the layers.



Here we are at one of our favorite overlooks --checking out the mountains AND wildflowers.



More beautiful sky pictures;  I love seeing the shadows on the mountains!



"Hurry!!!  Let's have lunch before the rain gets here."



See the RAIN on that next ridge????  BUT--there was still sun where we were!!



Here's one more picture showing the mountains,  the sunshine,  AND RAIN in the distance!



AND---after seeing all of the beauty in the Smokies,  we had more glorious beauty on our way  home that evening.  This is the SUNSET that evening as we drove on the Cumberland Plateau heading home!!!!  WOW!



Two people in love ---who also love being in the MOUNTAINS!

Hope you enjoyed seeing more of our pictures from that Day Trip to the Smokies.  As you can see,  whether it is sunny or rainy or just cloudy,  the sky can give us so much beauty while in the mountains.. We will go back and take pictures in some of these same areas after the leaves change colors this coming month.  I can't wait to see it all again in AUTUMN.

Hugs,

Monday, March 3, 2014

Arkansas Trip with Friends

This past week,  George and I went to one of our favorite vacation homes,  our little cabin at Mt. Nebo State Park, Arkansas.  We have been there every year for probably the last 8-10 years... We LOVE it there!!!!  This year though,  we invited special friends to go along with us.  We had Cabin 60---and they had Cabin 61....  It was fantastic....  For me,  having friends who enjoy the same things as we do is just SO much fun.  We LOVED sharing our little 'paradise' with them.

Neal and Patti live in Indiana --and we have traveled together several times for the past few years.  You can check Neal's blog by clicking HERE.  Patti doesn't blog but we can keep up with each other by texting or email. They both are very special to both George and me.  Neal and I both grew up in southwestern Virginia (although we didn't know each other as kids)---so we have a special connection which only southwestern Virginia folks have!!!!!   Neal absolutely LOVES to tease me ---and George just loves it when Neal does that...  Of course,  I 'try' to get him back every chance I get.

Today,  I'll share a few photos from this past week with friends.  Please click on the photos for enlargements.  Above is a picture of the four of us taken on 2/27 when we visited Petit Jean State Park not far from Mt. Nebo. 



While at Petit Jean,  we hiked to Cedar Falls (pictured on the sign in the photo of the four of us in the photo before this one).  This is the 3rd time George and I have hiked that 'strenuous' trail---and I must say that each time I do it,  it's easier for me... Losing the weight and getting healthier has really helped me!!!!



Here is a photo that I took of George, Patti and Neal once we were down near that gorgeous 90 foot waterfall.  The temperature on this day was in the 40's ---but there were still icicles around the falls and ice at the bottom of the falls.



On a VERY cold day (2/26/14)---we took Neal and Patti to another nearby state park,  Mt. Magazine.  This is another place where George and I love to visit each year.  And it seems as if the weather is bitter cold almost every time we go there.   Here is a photo of Patti, Neal and George at one of the many overlooks at Mt. Magazine.  You can tell how bundled up we all were since that wind almost cut us in half!!!!!  Brrrrrr.  BUT---the sun was shining and we had gorgeous views even on a cold day.



George took this photo of Patti and me at one of the overlooks.  She's a TINY lady --so I had to squat in order to be her size!!!!!



George climbed down OVER the ledge to get the next picture of us standing above him --watching him!!!!  Even with his bad back and knees,  that boy loves to climb!!!!!!   "YIPES, Honey----Don't FALL!!!!!"



George took this photo of Patti, me and Neal at that overlook when he was hanging onto the ledge below us! (Note photo before this one!!!!)



We hiked to the HIGHEST point in the state of Arkansas,  Signal Hill.  Here's a photo of Neal and Patti taken at that point.



George and I always LOVE seeing the deer when we are at Mt. Nebo.  Here's a photo  I got from our cabin during the late afternoon on 2/26 of them in the big field between our cabin and Neal/Patti's cabin.  You can see Neal in the background (next to his car) taking pictures of the deer also.  I counted FIFTEEN of them at that time but could never get them ALL in one photo!



Last year some of you may remember me posting a picture of the first ROADRUNNER I had ever seen.. Well---I wasn't disappointed this year since we saw another one...  We don't have Roadrunners in Tennessee---so as you can imagine,  I was excited to see him again!



Finally,  here's one more photo of the four of us taken at Petit Jean State Park on 2/27.  It was a fantastic week ---and we had a wonderful vacation together.  If you ever have a chance to take great friends to one of your favorite places,  DO IT.... It's SO much fun.

Have a great day...  Be sure to check out my sidebar for all new QUOTES.  Maybe something will speak to you --like it does to me!!!

I have tried to visit most blogs this weekend --trying to catch up a little.  I counted 60 blogs which I visited and commented on....  My commenting will also be sporadic this month...  It's a crazy one for us!!!  Please be patient with me.

Hugs,