Early April Notes:
The first day of Spring (on the calendar) was on March 20th, but most of the valley still looks like Winter! We had several warm days at the end of March, which began melting the heavy snow pack on the valley floor. Elk will eventually leave the National Elk Refuge, and expect Wolves to follow them. When the migration begins, you can often see more wildlife in a single day than any other month of the year. Moose are often in the river bottoms at this time of the year, but many are moving back to the sage flats. Hawks, Eagles, Falcons, and Kestrels have been spotted in March. Songbirds are also beginning to move through the valley. Bohemian Waxwings have been stripping the berry trees in town. I would expect April to be very active this year.
Other Wildlife for Early April: I didn’t see as many Mountain Goats in the Snake River Canyon this year as in other years, but that may have been a result of the heavy snow pack. Still, I would expect to see a few through the middle of April. April is also a good month to see Grizzlies in Grand Teton National Park. Watch for Foxes, Marmonts, and Badgers. Trumpeter Swans will be leaving the valley at some point. Other birds, like White-faced Ibis might be seen for a day or two before they move on north. The Bison I photographed with frosted faces last month are still around, but are seldom next to the steam now.
The area at the Sage Grouse’s traditional lekis still mostly snow covered. Around 20-30 of them have been hanging around the Kelly Warm Springs area lately. Possibly, they are using the Kelly areas as their lek this year.
Roads: The Moose-Wilson Road and Teton Park Roads usually open on May 1st. As of March 31st, Antelope Flats Road is still gated. The Teton Park Road (Inner Park Loop Road) is open to walkers, runners, & bikers (no vehicles) until May 1st.
Weather: While days should be much warmer than in January and February, a passing storm with heavy snow is always possible. Most of the fresh snow usually melts in one day in the valley floor.
The first week or so of April should resemble April 2018 Daily Journal for Grand Teton National Park & JH : Also, check out the Monthly Overviews for JH / GTNP
Daily Updates Archives:
April 1st – Monday
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Mountain Goat on Rocky Ledge: Captured near the mouth of the Snake River Canyon. Nikon 500 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 lens, Handheld.
Darla and I will be out of town for the first week of April…on a cruise ship in the Caribbean. I’ll try to post a photo or note off and on while out of town, but will be back in the Park as soon as we return. For now, check out the April Daily Journals for the past five years!
Ft. Lauderdale: For this trip, I took my Nikon D850 body along with a Nikon 24-70 and 70-200mm lenses. I have a lightweight tripod and a couple of Lume Cubes. Tomorrow, we’ll be in Grand Turks for a day in the sun.
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