Three Tule Elk, Grassland

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    Three Tule Elk, Grassland. Point Reyes National Seashore, California. May, 30, 2011. © Copyright 2011 G Dan Mitchell - all rights reserved.

    Three tule elk grazing along the headlands area at Point Reyes National Seashore.

    Although I was certainly aware that there are tule elk herds at Point Reyes National Seashore, I was not thinking about them when we encountered this group. We had driven out to the Point Reyes lighthouse and other areas at the extreme end of the peninsula, and had then stopped at Drakes Beach on the return trip. Finishing up at the beach, we got back in the car and headed up the hill towards the main road. As we reached an area near the top of the hill I thought I saw something moving off to the side, but I initially failed to recognize what I was seeing because the possibility of such animals in this place was not on my mind. I thought I was perhaps seeing a fence or something similar, but I couldn't make sense out of why the fence would be moving!

    A moment later we were a bit closer and it was obvious that a small herd of the tule elk were grazing very close to the fence along the road. I got out of the car and quietly attached a long lens to my camera and began to photograph these animals. The lighting and other circumstances were nearly perfect. It was very late in the day and the golden hour light had just started, and the backdrop was either the rolling hills you see here or, if I moved a bit to one side, some higher hills further to the west. This group of three large animals was moving, along with other animals not included in this shot, away from the road and further out into the meadows. As the three of them lined up in parallel, for a moment one swung its head around and looked directly towards me.

    G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.
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    Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.

    vLeon, monilague, bubbletea1, and 13 other people added this photo to their favorites.

    1. Steph Sawyer Photography (on and off) 73 months ago | reply

      Oh wow! They lined up perfect for you!

    2. lregoli [deleted] 73 months ago | reply

      What a nice catch!

    3. Spenature [deleted] 73 months ago | reply

      Your Beautiful image was seen in.
      Earth Images Nature Photography.

    4. monilague 73 months ago | reply

      Love the colors and light and composition.

      [ via monilague's contacts on flickriver  --monilague ]

    5. bertdennisonphotography 73 months ago | reply

      fantastic! beautiful animals!

    6. SkyKing and Queenie [deleted] 73 months ago | reply

      Right place, right time, right cast of characters...nice!

    7. SolanoSnapper 73 months ago | reply

      The color, the composition, the subject - wow!

    8. edenseekr 73 months ago | reply

      Yes!! Great that you got to see these; they did not appear for us.

    9. ~AlohaGlor~ 73 months ago | reply

      Fantastic capture! ;o)

    10. vbossi 73 months ago | reply

      Nice capture.

    11. Joe Ganster 73 months ago | reply

      awesome shot!

    12. Dan Wiklund 71 months ago | reply

      Great shoot indeed.

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