May 22, 2008

A cold front has swooped down over us and appears to have settled here for a few days. It has only rained a bit, but the forecast calls for some. Hope it doesn't call too loudly. Tonight we are backpacking to the mouth of Camp Creek canyon. I am now sitting in my warm car at Kolob visitor center waiting for people to get packed. It seems I am one of the only ones with backpacking experience, so it will be interesting to see how the others do.
Two nights ago we trotted up to Refrigerator Canyon, but saw and heard nothing. Steph and I got a chance to go up to Angel's Landing before the sun set, so we booked it up there. We seem to be connecting well. There is a confidence in her eyes when she looks at me.
The next night we were treated to some good owl action. Down in a slot canyon of Echo Canyon, the owl hooted from a small slit above Dave as he was passing by. We all gathered below the slit and waited for him to show himself. After some time, and the darkness filled the canyons, the owl popped out. Awesome view. He hooted his five-note call to us several times. As he flew up canyon, we followed and got several more good views. Eventually, Dave decided to let him be, so we snuck past the owl and headed out. But the owl wasn't done with us. He followed us as we climbed straight up and out of the canyon. I flashed my light on him to get his red eyes one last time, and left him behind. We will return later to do offspring surveys.
So far so good with emotional status. It's hard not to be happy with a job like this. But when training is over, it could be different, since I enjoy when the entire crew is together.