The early days of our time in Alberta always had me casting my eyes to the west and the mountains. It is no understatement to say I loved the mountains, in time loved climbing them and hiking the trails. And to be honest, always a bit nervous about surprising a bear along the way. We never had the unfortunate experience of having to navigate that one. We had many bear sightings but usually from the safety of the car.
We discovered that along the “old highway” which is named 1A, you could find quite a bit of wildlife. We often saw big horn sheep, or mountain goats and elk. The big bulls are amazing to watch and they move with a slow but steady rhythm that gives us a sense that they are neither afraid nor in a hurry.
I took this picture in the early days of our time in Calgary (likely 2000-2001) and while it’s not as sharp or as high a resolution as I would like it does serve to portray him in a position which allows you to see his majestic stance and gives you the context of the roadside, where they were often found.
There are about 350 elk who live in Banff National Park. The bulls grow up to 1000 pounds. Our first visit to Banff in July 2000 saw a full size bull came right up beside the van – it felt like he was bigger than us!
I am hoping at some point to get back to the mountains for more photos.