Shutterrific Photography

by Bill Singleton

No Safer Place on Earth


 For the past seven years I have joined my good friend Brent Paull in Yellowstone National Park photographing the abundance of wildlife it offers.  Spring is an amazing time in Yellowstone as the long harsh winter gives way to warmth and color, the wildlife activity spikes with bears coming out of long hibernation, and sows displaying their cubs for the first time.  An unimaginable hunger lingers compounded by the need to feed the offspring making for a display of nature in the rawest form.  In the spring of 2010, on the first day of a four day safari, we were greeted in Swan Flats by a sow later dubbed “Quad Mom”.  An unheard of litter of four cubs she was certainly the talk of Yellowstone in the many months that followed.  We watched the sow pace the vast area of Swan Flats in search of newborn elk calves, a favorite diet this time of year, with the four cubs close behind from a distance of about 4-500 yards.  At times, the sow would grasp the runt cub by it’s scruff and fling it on her back so as to cover ground quickly.  An amazing scene to witness.  She approached in an almost direct line, fearless and showing no signs of stress to within a few yards of our group as if to train her young on dealing with the hoards of people they were sure to encounter through their life in Yellowstone.  This is but one of the family portraits I was able to capture for a lifetime of memories.  I call it “No Safer Place on Earth” for obvious reasons.


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