July 8th, 5 am... I set my alarm at 4:50 , 5:00 , 5:10 am 3 times so I don’t over sleep. I am up at the 5 am alarm and getting ready to head out to the Lake Hotel. I am the only one on the road, only 2 miles to drive. I meet “Doug” my guide for the Photo Safari Tour. Doug is a photographer and driver for the day. there are 8 of us to go, one couple didn’t show up. In the first 15 minutes I knew this was going to be a Fun Day.. Doug has a great personality and really cares about making your day a learning and a true experience in the Wild.
We load up in a Big Yellow Car Bus out front. Since I am the only one single, guess who gets to ride up front as co-pilot? YES... Me.. This is cool. We search for animals and look closely thru the trees. Our first spot of the day happens within 10 minutes, we spot a Coyote and follow him along the trees. Doug knows his every move and follows him forward and backward. after everyone takes a few shots we move on. The Bus has large crank down windows so we can all take pictures without looking thru glass. It is about 50* outside, so we were told to dress in layers, then we can remove them as the day gets warmer.
Next we stop at a Geyser and a flower field, Doug shows us what F stop to use and also ISO settings for the best shots, I didn’t know that ? Picking up a lot of pointers so far !!There are so many camera types here today and Doug knows them all and helps all that need help. Most of us start snapping shots all over the area. I even get yell at for going beyond the “Do Not Enter” sign, Sorry !! I didn’t see the 4”x 6” sign on the post.
Going up the next hill we see Marmite animal, looks like a ground hog to me? Doug shouts(whispers)out instructions on how to take his shot...Look...now... look for gleam in his eyes...now shoot !! Great Teacher !!
On the hilltop he shows us on how to do landscaping shots... what a view... then flower shots next.. how, what and not to do! We are so busy nobody saw the deer behind us.. Pay Attention !! Time for a breakfast break, Doug opens the back doors for Blueberry Muffins and Juice for all. Now back down the road for a few miles.....
Guess what we see next ? Yes...Buffalo...a whole herd of them.. traffic jam for 2 miles , we inch up for a good vantage point and pull off the road, It is nice out now we pull the top off the Bus so we can stand on the seats and get a high shot of the Buffalo. No people to block our view !! There is also a bear way off in the distance, too far for our zoom lenses, so Doug gets out a spotting scope for all of us to see him thru the scope. Sure wish I could have gotten a picture! We then head down the road for more lessons with polarizing lenses. Doug has lenses for all of us to use for the day. We climb/hike up a hillside to see the winding river and mountains behind it. Doug wants to build his cabin right “here” !
Now we turn around and back thru the Buffalo herd, more traffic and watch buffalo take over crossing the highway. Guess they are the boss around these parts. There is a Ranger here trying to keep traffic moving, he sure is patient with everyone.
Well it is 5 hours later and we get back to the Hotel for our drop off. Doug wants to make sure each of us get our picture with the Yellow Bus .... Thanks Doug for a delightful morning of learning and seeing the Wild.
So... If you ever go to Yellowstone I recommend the Photo Safari Tour from The Lake Hotel and you will get Doug as your Guide. He is the Best and I hear it from everywhere I go in Yellowstone. Here are the shots I took today..What do you think ? Did I learn anything ?
God Bless... AirstreamHobo & Mom