I'm relatively new to Nikonians, and I wanted to say that I have very much appreciated the material I've been able to see in this forum. It has been an education, and it's helped me have a clearer sense of what is possible and what I would like to work towards.
I live in northwestern Wyoming, where I have good opportunities for wildlife photography. I thought folks might be interested in a recent photographic encounter I had with some bighorn sheep. These shots were all taken with a D300, 70-200 2.8 VR lens, ISO250.
My wife and I decided to drive up into Yellowstone for the day last Sunday. The East Entrance had only been open about a week, but we had been getting reports from friends that grizzlys and wolves have been pretty thick this year. Once we got through the East Entrance my wife took over driving so I wouldn't make her so nervous looking for photo opportunities with one hand on the wheel.
We had only gone a couple of miles when a bighorn ram came down off the mountainside and stopped in the middle of the road. Bighorns are common in the area, so we didn't think too much about it, but this one seemed tense so my wife slowed down and stopped. Pretty soon another ram followed him down. They squared up and started to do a little shoving. Then two more came barreling in.
There was clearly some energy in the group.
After some more shoving and jostling they trotted past us, tightly bunched.
Eventually eight showed up, and for a moment there was some serious head butting.
Nice action Rob! Looks like these guys were pretty worked up. This is actually more action than I was able to capture in all of last year's rut. It would have been nice, of course, if they had been off of the asphalt. However, you can only control what you can. I like #1 best!
I appreciate the comments. I wish I had not had the camera set at 2.8, but the action took me by surprise. In number one I was focused on the guy in the middle of the road and didn't realize the incoming ram was bouncing the way he was. The best part of image is out of focus.
I felt the same way about the pavement. I'm getting philosophical about such things, though. There will be other opportunities.
Very nice Rob. It would have been a little better had they been in their own environment rather than a highway, but still good images. I've been waiting to encounter bighorns in RMNP when I have been in Estes Park, CO, but I can never seem to find them when I have my camera. Maybe this coming July (as warm as it might be then).