Wednesday, October 1, 2014

PA Elk in the Rut

I have found that September is the best time to go to Benezett to see large Bull Elk and hear them bugle and chase cows.  This year was not a disappointment.
Early morning usually gives way to a lot of fog, and I got this picture  as soon as I arrived in the field behind the visitor's center.

As the day progressed more and more Elk made their way into the open where I could get pictures.
  Some you just got to see their antlers above a bed of yellow

Others were searching for apples
When we stopped for lunch we saw two whitetail fawns in a yard by the restaurant... what's for lunch?  Why, of course, Elk burgers!

The highlight of our day was when we happened on to this very large bull with two cows.  This is the largest rack I have seen so far at Benezett
He dug at the ground with his horns and then just walked over and laid down 

A very long 'elk jam' of cars lined up along the road to watch this bull but he didn't seem to care about any of us out there snapping pictures and ooooing and awwwwing

We saw lots of other Bulls in our travels up and down the roads
Whether I am far away or close up I see the Bulls  herding the cows into their harems and looking for a fight with a rival bull. 
A beautiful sunset on Winslow Hill
 Dusk is gathering and we have to go home but we will return again to watch these magnificent animals.

To God be the Glory  ~~  Great Things He Hath Done

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Elk Calves in July

I usually reserve my visits to Elk Country until  early fall when the  bulls are bugling, but wanted to make a trip mid summer to see if I could see any new calves. 
 The scenery is always very nice to photograph here at Benezett 
The first capture was not an elk but Turkeys that are always somewhere around the visitors center or out in the fields
This encounter was not an elk either, but I loved this picture of another photographer I would guess who was looking for the same thing I was....elk
 Also not an elk but a bird of interest on the high tension wire on the way to the visitors center.  Cooper Hawk
Finally I did get to see a cow with a calf..but at a distance
Then a few more came out of the woods

 While taking an icecream break we were sitting and looking on the power line 
looked like a few cows and atleast one calf 
While watching the elk we saw a White tail fawn run across behind the elk.

A cow munching on greens close to the road
We also did see a couple of Bull elk but they were back in the woods with many sticks and trees to contend clear shots here.
A little better shot
 Towards evening we saw a bull feeding with some cows near the edge of the woods
My favorite picture which I almost missed on the way out of Benezette was this one.

To God be the Glory  ~~  Great Things He Hath Done

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Wrapping up my trip

A Few last highlights of the trip.
Food is very important when we travel.  Shirley's restaurant in TN had  the BEST breakfast ever.
This place didn't look like much but.......
It had the best home made hot biscuits you ever tasted! The eggs and sausage gravy came in a close second.
 Another place right up there on the list was Mels Diner (Gatlinburg TN)
 Who wouldn't want to dine in an old fashioned place like this?
 Remember Flo and "kiss my Grits"
 Traveling down a windy country road in TN we saw this man making brooms.  I stopped and bought one. He is a 4th generation broom maker!  Best broom ever!
Just a roadside picture of queen anne's lace and blue chicory.  Did you know both of these flowers are edible? Queen anne's lace also known as 'wild carrot' has a carrot like root which can be eaten.  The leaves however are toxic. Chicory can be made into coffee or the leaves used in salad in early spring before they get bitter.
 While in Ky we stayed at our friends' (Ralph and Pat) property.  This is their beautiful log cabin where we spent many hours on the porch. Their property was just gorgeous.  As you will see by the next few pictures.

I loved the early morning mist
 We took a few day trips.  One was to Cumberland Falls.  They call it the little Niagara Falls of Ky
 My brother David taking a picture
One trip was to Old Sublimity Bridge in Laurel County Ky.
The bridge was built in 1942 by the CCC (Civilian Conservation Corps) It connects Laurel and Pulaski County.
The pedestrian only bridge gives great views of the Rockcastle River
As you walk across the bridge look up and view the legendary Bee Rock overlooking Bee Rock Recreation Area.
A little history lesson:
Brigadier General Felix K Zollicoffer (1812-1862)  was killed in action while leading his brigade during the Battle of Mill Springs,(Jan. 1862)
The Confederates left some 125 dead on the field and the Union soldiers interred them in a mass grave a few yards from the place where their general had fallen. In the mud and fog and rain the near- sighted General Zollicoffer mistook the enemy for his own troops and was shot dead. Federal soldiers dragged Zollicoffer's body out of the road and propped it up against a white oak at roadside where it remained for the rest of the battle.
Souvenir-seekers clipped  buttons from his coat and locks of his hair.  Legend has it the scavenging continued until the body was clad only in underwear. His body was returned to his family in Nashville where he is buried
 Later stones were erected with names of the fallen.
Turning again towards food:   We saw this sign and had to stop by
 Now you have to realize it is June and no fresh tomatoes or corn is being sold in PA so I was in heaven.  We bought green beans, tomatoes, corn, and cantaloupe.  Ralph cooked up those beans with some fatback and we had steak that night with beans, sweet potatoes and 'maters'  Oh my gosh it was divine.  What a perfect way to bring this vacation to end!   

To God Be The Glory  ~~  Great Things He hath Done

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