Tuesday, February 22, 2011

A Winter Trip To Pennsylvania Elk Country

My brother Coy and I of Country Captures traveled to Pennsylvania Elk Country for a one day photo shoot on Friday February 18th. There was still significant snow cover when we arrived, but the weather turned much warmer as the day progressed and the snow melted as quickly as I have ever seen.

George B. Stevenson Dam
Bennetts Branch of the Sinnemahoning was high and discolored, and the ice had already broken up.  One could find ice jams at spots along the river and sometimes one of the jams would break loose and a flow down the river, making for interesting photographs.

Ice Flowing Down-River Near Benezette River Bridge
When we arrived most areas were still snow covered and the Gilbert Viewing Area had more snow cover than is shown in the first photo of the  post of February 15, 2011.  This had changed significantly by the end of the day and the ground was almost bare. 

Gilbert Viewing Area-Almost Bare By Late Afternoon

It was a strictly average trip from the standpoint of elk photography.  Herds of cows were scattered along Route 555, and we did see a few bulls around Elk Lick Campground, but they were not in a favorable location for photography and we did not stop.

Cow Along 555
A young bull and several cows were in Benezette most of the day, and we paused to photograph them out of the window in the late afternoon.  By this time many of the lawns in Benezette were bare.

Herd In Lawn In Benezette
We encountered a bachelor group of three bulls at a feeder along Winslow Hill Road.  The first is the largest we saw on the trip.

6x8 Along Winslow Hill Road
6x6 At Feeder
On a disturbing note, we found that the sign at the gate to the Elk Country Visitor Center was damaged by someone firing rounds from what appeared to be a handgun into it.  Visit Country Captures to see photographs of the damage  and other photographs from the trip.

Originally posted at Pennsylvania Wildlife Photographer by Willard Hill


Verde Farm said...

The handgun usage is very distressing. I just don’t understand those kinds of things. These are beautiful pictures. Why I didn’t realize there were elk on the east coast I do not know. I spent many house in the rainforest in the state of Washington trying to spot elk with no luck. I heard them but never got to see them. I did see them later in a natural habitat that was privately owned but didn’t know they lived as close as PA. Great shots.

Anonymous said...

What a gorgeous view at George B. Stevenson Dam. I liked the picture of the ice flowing too. As always, your wildlife pictures are excellent.

eileeninmd said...

Wonderful scenic photos of the river and awesome shots of the elk.

BJ Roan said...

Impressive shots! I really like the elk lounging along the tree line. They are beautiful animals.