Friday, August 20, 2010

Slough Creek

Yellowstone's Slough Creek is one of my favorite rivers to fish in the park.   Instead of making the trek up to the meadows above the campground we fished the area below the campground because we were short on time due to a late start and the travel delays caused by the road construction in the park. Wildlife is always abundant in the area and this year was no exception.  As soon as we got out of the vehicle we were treated to the sounds of wolves.  Not your traditional wolf sounds though, this fellow we heard was definitely out of sorts.

As I made my way down stream I started coming across some very fresh tracks in the sand and gravel on the banks of the stream.  I saw fresh wolf tracks that were probably made from the fellow we heard carrying on.

Mixed in and at times on top of the wolf tracks were even fresher grizzly tracks, but unfortunately my pics of the bear tracks did not come out (I apparently had the camera in macro mode).  The reason for all the activity soon became apparent.

This cow elk had been taken down in the river most likely by wolves.  Even though the carcass looks picked over it was very fresh.  There were still large unidentifiable pieces bobbing in the shallows nearby.

From the tracks on my side of the river it looks like the bear may have chased the wolves off the kill.  That was the probably the reason for all of the complaining we heard.  Luckily the bruin caught wind of us and beat feet before we got there.  I have to say stumbling across a sight like this certainly keeps you alert and on your toes.  Keep the bear spray in reach, and fish on!

All of the fish I caught were this size, nothing to right home about but there was enough of them to keep things interesting. Every fish eagerly took a sunken amber ant on the swing.  As the day turned to evening we discovered an interesting calling card left on our vehicle in the parking lot.

Yellowstone can be a pretty amazing place.


  1. "Knock, knock, anybody home"

    Truly amazing. Looks like a great day though.

  2. You're braver than me to be in Grizzly country. As much as I want to go fishing out West, something tells me if a grizzly gets close enough to me that I'd have to use bear spray, I'd be a goner. On the fishing front, looks like you had a great day...carcasses withstanding.

  3. On a positive note bears and wolves tend to keep the crowds away!