Monday, June 20, 2016

Alta Critters

Moose, birds, marmots, squirrels, coyotes, mountain goats, deer, badger and fox all make their home in the Alta area. In winter, you may have to try a bit harder, but you can find ermine, porcupine, coyote and fox.

Driving up and down the canyon over the years, I have seen a coyote walking along the side of the road many times.


You won't have to look too hard to see a moose at Alta.  They are frequently seen in Albion Basin and we see them from the deck of Alta Lodge near the slopes of Lower Rustler where there seems to be plentiful food sources for moose. Moose are part of the deer family and the plural of moose is moose.

Now the weasel or ermine are at little stealthier and good at tricking us with their tan coat in the summer and fall that turns to white in the winter.  Their sleek body moves quickly as they hunt for prey and disappear in their burrow. Weasels are built for the hunt.


 
The shy pika, a member of the rabbit family, lives among boulder fields and pops in and out of cover if you are in their housing area when out on a hike. They almost look like a large mouse except for their large ears.






 
Ground squirrels are a common site and you're likely to see a marmot as you wander around Alta. Badgers are around but it's rare to see one.

Years ago while on an evening hike to Cardiff Pass, I did have the good fortune to see a herd of mountain goats walking over the pass.  It was a spectacular site.

Make some time during the summer season to experience Alta when the snow has meleted.  It's a special place to to be and can be enjoyed by visitors of all ages.

No comments: