The Real Deal / by Matthew Bryant

We spent our third day in Yellowstone near the Slough Creek Campground. As Jack, the campground host, told us, bears are the "real deal" around here. He wasn't wrong. After setting up our tent we left the campground around 6:30 AM on 25 June 2018. On the gravel road out to the main road in the Lamar Valley Alison spotted two bears making their way back to the campground. Since we were at least 100 meters away, I jumped out of our car with the rented telephoto lens (Fujinon XF 100-400 mm) and began trying to get some images of the bears. I was also surprised to find two large sandhill cranes in the field keeping a watchful eye on the two bears. (Once I opened the files on my computer at home I realized the two cranes were accompanied by two chicks!)

After photographing the bears and cranes, we drove back to the campground to let Jack and guests know there were two bears headed toward them. When we returned later that evening to sleep, Jack told us about some of the bears antics --needless to say, bears are the "real deal" at Slough Creek Campground!