Sunday, June 22, 2014 – Snow and Running Trout

Summer began this week. So I’m told. Here in Yellowstone winter has not yet ceded to spring. As if to assert its dominance winter displayed its snowy wares. Wednesday as we began our first full week of 12 hour shifts we awoke to a 2 inch layer of the white stuff. Mary Ann took her camera to work to capture some of the scenery.

snowman All morning snow squalls punctuated by brief periods sunshine made routine activities at snow shovelonce beautiful and challenging. The crew driving the boat before us had to shovel snow off the dock to clear a path for passengers. The dock hands built a snowman. Our first trip after taking over at 1:00 included whiteout conditions during the first 15 minutes of the outing. The few passengers we had on board enjoyed the adventure. Snow continued to fall well into the night. Overnight the temperature dropped into the upper 20s.

Thursday was cold and cloudy but with no new precipitation. But that doesn’t mean the day was without excitement. At noon as we prepared to leave the dock to fuel up the boat I had to open a window to communicate with one of the dock hands. The window jammed, then broke free, then broke my finger. Really.

Yesterday we drove up to Trout Lake in Lamar Valley. Friends had told us the “trout are running,” meaning they were swimming upstream to spawn. This was highly anticipated and tops on Mary Ann’s list of things to photograph. We got up at 4 AM packed a lunch and met Susan and Richard in the parking lot at the trailhead about 7:30. It was a short hike to the lake and a little further to the babbling stream feeding into it and into which the trout were headed.

Everyone’s excitement was palpable and the experience turned out to be like no other! I’ll do my best to convey the essence. Imagine you’re in a clearing in in the woods on a mountain. You’re standing on the grassy bank of a swift-running, gurgling stream, 3 to 5 feet wide, looking into the water.

Keep imagining that.

For 20 minutes.

Now imagine you suddenly see a fish! Oops! No… It’s the reflection of a passing cloud.

You’re standing on the grassy bank of a swift-running, gurgling stream, 3 to 5 feet wide, looking into the water.

Running trout.

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2 Responses to Sunday, June 22, 2014 – Snow and Running Trout

  1. Teh says:

    John, don’t tell me you broke ANOTHER bone?