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Old Jan 10, 2004, 4:15 AM   #161
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Thank you digcamfan. First time I've been referred to as a raconteur (the word)...and had to crack open the dictionary for that one
Glad that you enjoyed my "minibiography." In reading your response, I was somewhat taken aback that someone actually enjoyed it and then went as far as saying so Thank you.

I take it you have an interest in NASA? I rarely hear people make mention of NASA.
Were you out, by any chance, observing Mars with your scope this past August? it isn't often that we get to view Mars so close


Youngest daughter spying Mars (unfortunately, a poor photo. Note the scope on the tripod) Her hair looks...well, terrible. lol She just got out of the shower.
<img src=http://img1.photobucket.com/albums/v31/informativetoo/marsre.jpg>


bcoultry,
Thank you and likewise, glad to meet you too. Yes, I do have many photographic opportunities living here. One very large reason why I would eventually like to bump up to a dslr. I've much learning to do and of course, saving too

"Land of the Midnight Sun"... when I hear that, I think of Barrow...and one place I think I would rather not be . lol Yes, just as they experience the "midnight sun" so do they experience darkness and for months, I do believe.
Was it work that brought your friend to live so far North?

The furthest North I've been to is Anchorage. I reside in S.E. Alaska a.k.a. the "Panhandle". Much warmer down here but I look forward to getting out of the rain &amp; muskeg.
We plan to move North in 3-5 years. Preferably around the Seward area as I would love to have some land again -with a garden...one that could actually produce something. Not much you can grow down here...weeds &amp; moss being the exception

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(Most of us with cameras hate having our own picture taken.)
Rather ironic, huh? :lol:
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Old Jan 10, 2004, 2:27 PM   #162
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No matter how messy a child, they never look bad the way we adults do when we make a wreck of ourselves. I don't know why this should be so, but it is. Your little girl looks adorable.

As for my friend who landed in Alaska, it was because her husband was stationed there during military service, and they simply ended up putting down roots. A half year ago, they moved to North Carolina because their nearly sixty-year-old bones just couldn't stand it another minute.

I have another friend who visited Alaska last year and who came home with stunning photos, the most surprising of them being of wild animals that appeared to have far less fear of humans than they do here in the Lower Forty-Eight. It was beautiful to see, but it was also worrisome.
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Old Jan 11, 2004, 7:21 PM   #163
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No matter how messy a child, they never look bad the way we adults do when we make a wreck of ourselves.
So true! There are days I don't even bother looking into a mirror. Our life has a way of wearing on our faces, at times.

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A half year ago, they moved to North Carolina because their nearly sixty-year-old bones just couldn't stand it another minute.
I have seen this often and am now watching my parents (dad in particular) experience this. My dad is really beginning to resent all the rain. Moving out of it and into other areas of Alaska...would put him in the cold and he's always disliked the cold. They have been considering a move to Oregon.

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the most surprising of them being of wild animals that appeared to have far less fear of humans than they do here in the Lower Forty-Eight.
What I have found with animals is that the more frequent encounters they have with humans, the less they fear them. This not being good for either humans or the wild animals.
People have been trampled by angry moose and have been pursued by bear. Such cases, a person is justifiable in defending themselves.

What kind of animal did your friend see? I personally haven't seen many sightings of them but I do live in an area where the animals have a vast amount of wooded areas in which to roam.
There are "observatory" locations in which the tourist can go to view bears, as are there Guides who will take hunters/tourists to locations where they would most likely see wild game.
As for my experiences, I have never seen a moose or wolves. Neither in the wild or in my community, though my husband did bring home a moose this last hunting season.
We have both but they keep out of site fairly well. I haven't seen Elk yet either.

I have seen deer and bears. My last experience with a bear was with a blackie raiding our trash can in the evenings. In the morning, while making my coffee-I have a habit of looking out our window. Ahh, there I would spot my can upon the hill across the street, contents strewn everywhere.
The police department set up a live trap and the bear was eventually jailed They drove the bear out the road and released him.

Up north, where there is large areas of flat land and fewer trees, I suspect seeing moose or elk wouldn't be too uncommon.
Moose (further north) have a way of finding their way into peoples gardens etc. so I've heard and have seen in picture & film.
Being up a creek/river during spawning season might offer a sighting of bear as well. I try to avoid bears as much as possible.
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Old Jan 11, 2004, 9:33 PM   #164
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I try to avoid bears as much as possible.
Avoiding bears is a really good idea. I've read some stuff about how to deal with them, but I hope to never have to put it into practice. Heck, avoiding moose isn't a bad idea either.

The closest I've come to a moose is finding a rather fresh track in the mud on the trail. When you find a moose track, you know it. I'd like to see one some day, but not over the raspberry patch from me (which is why I was out that day. Yum!)

Eric
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Old Jan 11, 2004, 10:18 PM   #165
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Eric, come visit me in Colorado sometime. We'll go moose viewing. The most I've seen at one time is 6 to 8 together, at dusk, eating away at the shrubs. They are huge! I don't have pictures, only video, otherwise I would have posted it.

Barthold
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Old Jan 11, 2004, 10:46 PM   #166
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Avoiding bears is a really good idea. I've read some stuff about how to deal with them, but I hope to never have to put it into practice.
I agree. One of the best things to do while out in bear country is make plenty of sound while you walk/hike. Usually if they know you are around, they'll try to avoid you too.
Surprising them isn't a good idea because it can cause them to rare up. Though in many cases, they have ran in the other direction. Still, best to make sound.

When my mother was a little girl, she surprised a bear and fortunately he high-tailed it out of there as fast as he could. She bounded out of the skiff, up and around the salmon berry bushes and literally bumped into a bear. He was just on the corner. When she opened her eyes, she saw his rear making quick time away from her.

When seeing a bear and he seeing you, he should leave. If not, there could be a problem. I have heard that people will shout &amp; wave and this has caused the bear to flee.

If you see a bear at a distance and he sees you, he raises to a stand and appears to be looking right/left...he isn't doing this because he's curious as to what is to the left/right of him...he's trying to show you how big he is.
A sure sign he's mad at your being there, is by the sounds he makes; clicking his teeth, snapping, snorting. A sure sign he's ready to spar...
you see him go down on all fours, making a mad dash (and they are fast) in your direction...you can be certain he'd like to give you a big bear hug...and not because he loves you. :lol:

Pepper spray: I don't know anyone here who carries it. Most people are of the mind that it'll only make them (bear and people too, if they are downwind) angrier. One angry bear...one blinded person.
Most everyone carries a firearm and uses common sense.

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When you find a moose track, you know it. I'd like to see one some day, but not over the raspberry patch from me (which is why I was out that day. Yum!)
This struck me as funny. I can visualize a person standing in front of a berry bush, enjoying the fruits and just on the other side of the berry bush, in front of him...a moose rack hovering atop the bushes. lol

They certainly are huge and very "different" looking. I was looking at my husband's moose...the rack, the long snout and big ears! The body, almost horse like.
They definitely are unique looking.
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Old Jan 12, 2004, 6:24 AM   #167
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What kind of animal did your friend see?
Probably a number of different sorts, but the photos he sent me were of a family of red fox. My friend sat down with his camera and simply waited. Curiosity got the better of the critters and forced them to all but sit in my friend's lap to investigate him.

Living as I do surrounded by field, stream, and woods, and also surrounded by the Adirondacks, Catskills, and Berkshires, I get to see a lot of wildlife around here--including fox, bear, coyote, mountain lion, and once, a wild boar. Even though the area is, relatively speaking, densely populated, even though the animals see people a lot, they are extremely shy. Photographing them requires huge patience and luck--plus a long lens (which no one bought me for Christmas. )

The only animals that don't run from us are the cottontails that frequent the back lawn. I believe they're a breed called Yard Rabbit.
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Old Jan 12, 2004, 8:18 AM   #168
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One of the best things to do while out in bear country is make plenty of sound while you walk/hike.
I read this earlier this summer, but I thought I'd share:
-------------------------
Bear Warning:

Since many of us go out in the wilderness to picnic. And spring is here. I thought you all would like to know about an information bulletin issued hrough cooperation between the USFS and the Canadian Authorities.

It is an information bulletin on bear attacks. We've been getting too many. So they have suggested we wear little bells to let the bears know we're coming. Also to take pepper spray. Now the black bears are more docile than the grizzlies. It is a good idea to know which bear, if any is in your area. The easiest way to tell this is through the waste they leave. The black bears usually have little berries, insects, and such in their waste. The rizzly waste has little bells, and smells of pepper. "
-------------------------

Ok, I admit it. I got it of an interesting thread on bears over at dpreview this past summer. Here is the first post in the long, but generally interesting thread. There are some people over there who have more experience with bears than I ever expect to have in my entire life.

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...essage=5200380

dpreview can dip into silly and useless bickering. But this thread was entertaining throughout. Some fun bear stories.
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When seeing a bear and he seeing you, he should leave. If not, there could be a problem. I have heard that people will shout & wave and this has caused the bear to flee.
It is my understanding (and I'm no expert!) that that is exactly what you should do. Make yourself look big and not afraid. If you know what type of bear it is you can figure out what they are doing (generally.) Black (and I believe Brown) bears might charge but that is a challenge to your athority. If you stand your ground & look big you should (99% of the time) be ok, and they will vear off and go away. If it's a grizzly... well, you're in real trouble(if they take an interest in you.) They are much more eratic and can easily out run you if they choose. But I'm no expert, so do what you all feel comfortable doing (personally, my preference is getting back into the car and shooting pictures out the window.)

Ah, here is what I was looking for. Tips for dealing with bears:
http://www.emeraldairservice.com/safety.htm

Don't know how good they are, but I remember reading them and thinking they might be useful.

I go way up the coast of Maine once a year. Loads of fun. I usually meet up with college friends. We go walking in logging trails and pick berries. But we always talk and make noise because we know what is out there. The guy who owns the cabin up there tells a story of exactly what you describe. He starts picking berries at this huge patch, and then he looks to his left and over the bush is a large moose. Luckily for him it wasn't rutting season or the moose's attitude could have been very different.

The only time we get a moose down here (near Boston MA) is when one is sick and wanders down. It happens every 5-10 years or so. Sad, because they have to put the moose down. But one of these times I want to find out where it is and get a look (from a car.)

barthold
If only I flew better, I'd love to get out that way. There are loads of place I'd love to go... and Colorado is one of them. And Yellow Stone, Glacier (sp?) The Grand Canyon, England, Flordia (great bird photography) and many other national parks. When I fly I go from "kinda sick with head and ear pain" to "multiple barfing, turn green" sick. Not fun.

Eric
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Old Jan 12, 2004, 9:02 AM   #169
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When I fly I go from "kinda sick with head and ear pain" to "multiple barfing, turn green" sick. Not fun.
Eric, the ear pain alone is enough. I've sworn off flying forever because of it. I've convinced myself that trains are the only way to go, and given the time to travel that way, it's far more comfortable and it affords a view of the landscape not often seen by car and never seen by plane.
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Old Jan 12, 2004, 12:49 PM   #170
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bcoultry

Your problem could be related to mine. Air pressure. Many planes don't keep the air pressure right for me, so that starts the head achs and ear pain. In my case, it's because of a birth defect in my skull... but it bet other things could cause it.

I've been in large planes and had good flights (very little pain) but some times even those hurt. My worse times have been in the smaller DC-9 like planes.

Eric
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