"Watchful Mama Lynx" --- This beautiful mama lynx kept close tabs on me as hiked past her in the forest near Indian, Alaska. Unbeknownst to me at this moment, she had treed her kitten very nearby just before I'd come upon them, and my path led me right past the tiny ball of fluff (see my photo, "Lynx Kitten"). She was going to make certain her kitten came to no harm from this forest passerby. When I finally noticed the kitten, I realized why the mama hadn't scampered off right away, as they do normally. I got a few shots of the baby, too, and then left them in peace.
"Lynx Kitten In Tree" --- While hiking through the forest near Indian, Alaska, I came across a Mama lynx who was watching me intently (see my photo "Watchful Mama Lynx"). I didn't know she was a mama at that moment, and couldn't believe my luck that she didn't instantly scamper off, but instead let me snap away, and even change to my long lens! After photographing her for a few minutes, I began to wonder at my immense good fortune, to have a lynx willing to pose for me. Usually, they disappear almost as soon as you see them! I thought, 'well maybe this cat has treed a squirrel or something, and is waiting for me to leave'. So I began to look around, and then saw this amazing little ball of fur in a tree just a few feet away! Then I knew, of course, exactly why the Mama was watching me so intensely. She was not going to let any harm come to her little kitten. So I snapped off a few pictures of the kit, and then with a huge smile on my face, left them in peace.
"Ptarmigan In Winter" --- This is Alaska's state bird, the Willow Ptarmigan, in its white winter plumage. I came across this beautiful creature one early winter day, while circumnavigating a mountain named "The Wedge" in Alaska's Chugach Mountains. Ptarmigans are amazingly well camouflaged, and they often remain very still as you walk by, so can be difficult to spot. But when they decide to bolt, they let loose with a cacophony of their signature warbles - or should I call them "screams". It's certain to give you heart palpitations the first hundred or so times it happens to you! :-)
"Sunset Eagle" --- An eagle perches in front of Mt. Susitna, by all appearances taking in the sunset view. Mt. Susitna, across Cook Inlet from Anchorage Alaska, is known in this area as "Sleeping Lady", because her profile looks like, well, a sleeping lady! That's her long hair trailing off to the left, and her legs to the right. My grandmother homesteaded by herself just this side of Sleeping Lady's ankles, where she had a small cabin and kept a dog sledding team.