top of page
  • Writer's pictureDeborah Kade

My eyes were bigger than my stomach

I found out this morning that the bird we saw last night was a red tail hawk. The receptionist at the front desk said there are six of them that hunt every day at that field. Well, I only saw three yesterday. I was also told there is an eagle that likes to hunt by the river.


Breakfast this morning again at Persephone. Yes, my eyes were bigger than my stomach. I just had to try the key lime croissant. It certainly was rich and creamy. Delicious!!!!! So, I brought back the kouign amann to the room.



The key lime croissant is the Spring seasonal croissant. In talking with the staff, we learned they haven't brought back the huckleberry croissant, my favorite, as it is very expensive to make. The key lime is well liked.



"If you’ve never heard of kouign-amann, these beauties hail from the Brittany region of France. The name comes from the Breton language words for “butter” and “cake,” with the literal translation being “butter cake.” 


"They are made from laminated dough, which you would use for croissants or puff pastry, but then towards the end, sugar is folded into the dough, which is the key difference between croissant dough and kouign-amann dough."


There are a few recipes for making the kouign amann on the Internet. I would suggest trying one that comes with steps and with pictures.


Michael, you must make some when we get home, as I will miss my morning treat.






Not many people at the bakery this morning.


It is a partly sunny day with the temperatures expected to rise.









Lucky enough to see "Big Red" go up. "The "Big Red" Aerial Tram whisks you to the top of Rendezvous Mountain in just 12 minutes - gliding skyward 4,139 vertical feet where you'll find advanced runs and the world famous gourmet waffles in Corbet's Cabin. In addition to the tram, the resort also offers 2 gondolas and 11 chairlifts."



Elk

Elk is hunted as a game species, and their meat is leaner and higher in protein than beef or chicken.

Elk are the second largest species of the deer family and one of the largest terrestrial mammals in its native range of North America and Central and East Asia. The word "elk" originally referred to the European variety of the moose, Alces alces, but was transferred to Cervus canadensis by North American colonists. The name "wapiti" derives from a Shawnee and Cree word meaning "white rump" for the distinctive light fur in the rear region, just like the Bighorn Sheep.


Elk range in forest and forest-edge habitat, feeding on grasses, plants, leaves, and bark.


I'm not sure why these two were tagged with what I think are tracking devices.


There always was at least one elk watching me all the time.



I'm sure they were alarmed I was in their line of sight. When alarmed, elk raise their heads high, open their eyes wide, move stiffly and rotate their ears to listen. Yes, they did all of that.



Male elk have large antlers, which they shed each year. Males also engage in ritualized mating behaviors during the rut, including posturing, antler wrestling (sparring), and bugling, a loud series of vocalizations that establishes dominance over other males and attracts females.


The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation has so much information regarding elk.

"North American Elk, or Cervus elaphus, are split by some biologists into six subspecies

  • Rocky Mountain (Rocky Mountain West, now transplanted to other locations) – largest antlers of all subspecies

  • Roosevelt’s (Coastal Pacific Northwest) – largest in body size of all subspecies, but not antler size

  • Tule (Central California) – smallest body size of all subspecies

  • Manitoban (northern Great Plains)

  • Merriam’s (Southwest and Mexico) – Extinct

  • Eastern (east of the Mississippi) – Extinct


Size and Weight

Newborn calf

35 pounds (16 kg)


Cow

500 pounds (225 kg) (Tule elk: 300 lbs., Roosevelt’s elk: 600 lbs.)

4 1/2 feet (1.3 m) at the shoulder

6 1/2 feet (2 m) from nose to tail


Bull

700 pounds (315 kg) (Tule elk: 400 lbs., Roosevelt’s elk: 900 lbs.)

5 feet (1.5 m) at the shoulder

8 feet (2.4 m) from nose to tail


Color

Summer: copper brown

Fall, winter and spring: light tan

Rump patch: light beige

Legs and neck often darker than body


Diet

Summer: grasses and forbs

Spring and Fall: grasses

Winter: grasses, shrubs, tree bark and twigs

Elk may supplement their diet at licks, where they take in minerals that may help them grow healthy coats and produce nutritious milk

An elk’s stomach has four chambers: the first stores food, and the other three digest it


Ivories

An elk’s top two canine teeth are called ivories

Scientists believe ivories are remnants of saber-like tusks that ancestral species of elk used in combat

Most hunters save ivories as a memento of the hunt


Antlers

Only male elk have antlers

Bulls shed and grow a new set of antlers every year

New antlers are covered in fuzzy skin called velvet

Antlers harden by late summer and the velvet peels away

By September, antlers are solid bone

A set of antlers on a mature bull can weigh up to 40 pounds


Social Organization

Cows, calves and yearlings live in loose herds or groups

Bulls live in bachelor groups or alone

During the rut, cows and calves form harems with one or two mature bulls


Body Postures

When alarmed, elk raise their heads high, open their eyes wide, move stiffly and rotate their ears to listen

If a harem cow wanders, a bull stretches his neck out low, tips up his nose, tilts his antlers back and circles her

Elk threaten each other by curling back their upper lip, grinding their teeth and hissing softly

Agitated elk hold their heads high, lay their ears back and flare their nostrils, and sometimes even punch with their front hooves


Elk Talk: Vocalizations

Elk are among the noisiest ungulates, communicating danger quickly and identifying each other by sound.

High-pitched squeal: Newborn to its mother, who recognizes her calf by its voice.

Bark: Warning of danger.

Chirps, mews and miscellaneous squeals: General conversation among the group.

Bugling (bellow escalating to squealing whistle ending with grunt): Bull advertising his fitness to cows, warning other bulls to stay away, or announcing his readiness to fight.

Elk also use body language. For example, an elk displays dominance by raising its head high."


Instead of driving through Jackson, Michael and I took the back road to the community of Moose. It is such a lovely drive.


Moose is an unincorporated community in Teton County, Wyoming, in the Jackson Hole valley. It has a US Post Office, with the zip code of 83012. The town is located within Grand Teton National Park along the banks of the Snake River. It is populated mostly by families with inholdings within the borders of the park. 


That is a house with a view!








A few years ago this was a gravel road.





Several cars were parked by this stream so we stopped and asked the people what animal they were photographing and watching. Unfortunately, we missed the bear by 30 seconds. The stream was pretty, though so I took a picture.


The name Moose can also refer to the small community of Park Service houses located immediately behind administration offices. These houses are exclusively inhabited by Park Service employees and their families. The National Park Service maintains the Grand Teton National Park headquarters in Moose, as well as the park visitor center. A local non-profit, the Grand Teton Association, also maintains some facilities in the area to help further the NPS mission.


We did come across two moose.












Pussy willows growing by the wetlands.

Moose can usually be found in this area but there were none today.



Beaver dam





In past years, we have seen bears and moose in this area. Nothing today!!







Next stop was at Mormon Row. Grand Teton's Mormon Row Historic District is one of the most visited sites in Jackson Hole due to its historic relevance and undeniable beauty. Part of the National Register of Historic Places, the historic district is one of the country's best representations of an early 1900s western farming community.


Mormon Row, formerly known as the town of Grovont, was settled in the late 1890s by Mormons from the Salt Lake region. Due to the Homestead Act of 1862, which granted land ownership to any person willing to build a house and cultivate the area for five years, this community was able to establish a presence in the area east of Blacktail Butte. Settlers secured 27 homesteads that they built close together to share labor and community.


Settlers dug miles of ditches to bring water from the Gros Ventre River to their fields. In the winters, these ditches would freeze so families traveled to the river with buckets to gather much-needed water. It wasn’t until 1927 that the Kelly Warm Spring cooled, caused by hydrologic shifts from the Gros Ventre slide flood, and offered a dependable water source to residents year-round. Families mainly grew hay and ninety-day-oats, as these were a few of the only crops that were able to survive the short growing season and harsh conditions of Jackson Hole. Families also owned cows, whose milk and meat provided food, as well as horses, that helped settlers till the fields.


The John Moulton Barn is part of John and Bartha Moulton’s homestead. Today, this barn and their more modern-style, pink stucco home still stand on their homestead, which was inhabited seasonally until the late 1980s. Many travel from around the world to photograph this historic structure.






"Mormon Row is far more than just a relic of our past. The weathered Moulton barn, standing alone against the Tetons, is one of America's most emblematic images. This barn and the surrounding buildings are the physical remains of the courage, self-reliance, and sense of adventure that underscored Euro-American’s westward expansion. Stories like these help us understand this time period in the valley’s history and also celebrate the enterprising spirit that continues to move our country forward today.


Grand Teton National Park Foundation, in partnership with Grand Teton National Park, has launched a multi-year project to renew this well-loved destination and provide visitors with meaningful opportunities to connect with cultural history while immersing themselves in the awe-inspiring Teton landscape."



Teton Range

The Teton Range is a Mountain range of the Rocky Mountains. It extends for approximately 40 miles (64 km) in a north–south direction through the U.S. state of Wyoming, east of the Idaho state line. It is south of Yellowstone National Park, and most of the east side of the range is within Grand Teton National Park.






"One theory says the early French voyageurs named the range les trois tétons ("the three nipples") after the breast like shape of its peaks. Another theory says the range is named for the Teton Sioux (from Thítȟuŋwaŋ), also known as the Lakota people.  It is likely that the local Shoshone people once called the whole range Teewinot, meaning "many pinnacles".





The principal summits of the central massif, sometimes referred to as the Cathedral Group are Grand Teton (13,775 feet (4,199 m)), Mount Owen (12,928 feet (3,940 m)), Teewinot (12,325 feet (3,757 m)), Middle Teton (12,804 feet (3,903 m)) and South Teton (12,514 feet (3,814 m)). Other peaks in the range include Mount Moran (12,605 feet (3,842 m)), Mount Wister (11,490 feet (3,500 m)), Buck Mountain (11,938 feet (3,639 m)) and Static Peak (11,303 feet (3,445 m)).




At least we didn't have to use the boot scrapers today. The temps reached 61 degrees. Major heat wave as compared to what we had in Yellowstone.


Haven't seen one of these beer trucks in years. "What'll you have?"


Another day comes to a close in the Tetons. Good night!



17 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Comments


bottom of page