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June 28, 2016

A New Love(s) @sloanebcollins #PlottingPrincesses #amwriting #Yellowstone #GrandTetons #MFRWorg

Last month, I fell in love.

With bears and moose, mountain bluebirds and coyotes, owls and bison.
To clarify, I fell in love with Yellowstone National Park and Grand Tetons National Park. While it was my husband’s third trip there, it was my first.

The above-mentioned wildlife were just a few of what we saw on our adventures in Wyoming. It ranks now as one of my top favorite vacations of all time (and I think I’ve mentioned a time or twelve how much I love Maine, right?). I’d move to Wyoming or Montana in a heartbeat.

It was a vacation that fed my soul. I got to be creative with photography, relax and look at beautiful countryside, and get inspiration for the Cowboy series I’m writing, which is set in Montana. (YES! We saw a real live cowboy rounding up cattle!)

I grew up surrounded by the Franklin mountains in El Paso, and have taken other vacations in and around mountains. The Grand Tetons are now my favorite of all. And I came up with an idea for a series set in that area! I think it has a bit of a unique twist. But I can’t say anything yet…

I’ve already been able to use some of what we saw in Yellowstone in my WIP. The first time we saw this momma and her two cubs, I think I shed a few tears. I definitely cried when we left. They are
“our” bears now, and I didn’t want to leave them.

 A list of what we were lucky enough to see: • A zillion bison, and a lot of baby bison. • A million elk – including a mom elk nursing her baby, which is rare, because they hide their babies! • A grizzly and her cub • Two separate black bears, each with two cubs • Another momma black bear with a yearling • Two older sibling black bears • Two moose • Two badgers • Four marmots • Two different species of owls • Two cinnamon teal (ducks with RED eyes) • Three coyotes • Bald eagle • Five mountain bluebirds • A fox • Four herons • A bird that has really groovy fringey feathers • SNOW!!!!

Now I plan to work in to my series as much of what we saw and experienced as possible to honor this beautiful country we have, and the wonder of God’s creation.

 Have you ever been to Yellowstone or the Tetons? What’s the most exciting wildlife you’ve seen?


Sylvia said...

I enjoyed Yellowstone very much, but we only saw buffalo. Lots and lots of buffalo. I've always wanted to see a bear, but never have. But we have land in Colorado and we know there are bears that roam our property. I'm sure I'll get to see one sometime in my life, probably closer than I'd like. Beautiful pictures.

Karilyn Bentley said...

I went to Yellowstone when I was a kid and would love to go back! We toured Old Faithful and some of the other hot springs. What I remember most was the smell. :) We didn't see a lot of wildlife, just bison. Then we drove through the Grand Tetons but by that time I was asleep in the car and mom woke me up so my only memory of them was from laying down on the seat. I definitely need to go back!

Glad you had a good trip. Loved your pictures!

Sloane B. Collins said...

Sylvia, yes, more than likely you'll see a bear soon! Keep bear spray on hand. But they're pretty good about leaving you alone, as long as you don't bother them...or go near the babies.
It was amazing to see them!

Sloane B. Collins said...

You definitely need to go back! It's gorgeous country, and now that you're in CO, you aren't that far away!
Yes, the thermal pools really do smell. I wish my husband had warned me about the Dragon's Breath cavern - I'd have stuffed my nose with Vicks. It was AWFUL!
Thanks for reading!

Vicki Batman, sassy writer said...

Oh my! I want to do so badly. And I want to go to Big Bend too. I sometimes wonder if there's enough time in my lifetime to cram everything in to see and do in the big wide world. So glad you had such a great vacation. Hugs!

Kathy Ivan said...

That whole area is someplace I've always wanted to go. I've been across the southern United States a couple of times, and while it's got a lot of beautiful spots, I really want to visit some of the northern mountains. Maybe head up to Oregon, Wyoming and Montana.

Just looking at those pictures, I've already got story ideas rolling around in my head. LOL I have to stop it, because I've got too many others to write first.

Great post.