DAY FOUR - Wednesday, October 25

NOT WOLFLESS!

Itís raining hard at 6:30AM. The prediction was for snow but at 38 degrees itís just not cold enough.

I drive through Soda Butte Valley and into Lamar. I sit at Picnic sipping my coffee, trying to wait out the rain.

At Slough I hear a static-filled radio call. All I can make out is ďBlacktailĒ so I continue west. Around Yellowstone Picnic I stop for several mule deer crossing to the north.

I reach the Nature Trail lot in time to see two Rescue wolves. They are back on the south side of the road, bedded just left of the Antler Rock. I see them for only a few minutes before they become obscured by fog.

I chat with various watchers in the pullout a while, including Doug M, who found the wolves originally. He had 15 bedded for about an hour earlier this morning.

I tell Doug that thanks to him I am not wolfless but that was probably the briefest sighting Iíve had in a long while. We try to wait out the fog but it seems to thicken rather than lift.

Around 10AM I head back east, passing more mule deer in the Hellroaring area.

I find Laurie and Dan at Boulder, following up a report of possible wolves in the Peregrine area. We look everywhere but find only elk and bison.

People spread out east and west. Since the Slough campground road is still open, I drive down to the gravel pullout. I see no wolves, but I find a hawk in a tree.

I head back east and stop at Round Prairie, enjoying the beauty of this spot.

When I get back to Silver Gate, Laurie tells me that heavy snow is falling in Mammoth and Gardiner and that the Park has closed the OGR for a while.

Today I saw: bison, mule deer, ducks, elk, a hawk, two wolves (Rescue Creek) and the spirits of Allison, Richard and Jeff.

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