We didn't get to see any bears on this trip to Yellowstone, but I found this lovely old postcard in a display case at the museum in West Yellowstone.
In Mammoth right in the middle of town we found an elk herd. The Ranger told us they don't really encourage them to come into town but they are attracted to the greenest grass and here was a very large patch for them to munch on. I can still remember the sound this bull made when he bellowed, it was an awesome sound.
Not too far out of Mammoth there were three elk at the side of the road. I got a pretty good shot of one of them out of the window of our car as we passed by. I have a moderate zoom on my camera, so I wasn't too close.
It's true, every time we saw cars backed up we knew we were in for an experience.
And here they were, a large herd.
It wasn't long before we were joined by a Park Ranger. They are always there to make sure animals and people stay a good distance away from each other. Case in point there were two photographers with very long lens' on their cameras and he told them to move back up the hill as we could see the herd was moving closer to them and he knew the bull would charge them. He told us to watch him. We learned that if any of his herd wandered a little too far away, as this young elk did, daddy would round them up to keep them close. The Ranger also told us that the young males once they reached a certain age would be run off, to eventually start their own herd.
For anyone who has a great love of wildlife and for nature in general, Yellowstone is an incredible place to visit.