We shared our backyard with a herd of elk last night.
It was pretty late when John came in and told me, wide-eyed, that the elk were back. It was dark, though the big moon was providing some eerie light on the back hillside. I strained my eyes to see them, and thought I caught a glimpse of movement. (Upon investigation this morning, it turns out what I thought was a large animal may have actually been a boulder). But I heard them. I heard the rustling as they found a place to cozy up for the night. I heard a deep snort or two. As I drifted off to sleep, I imagined the elk were doing the same, not far from my back door.
We’ve seen and heard the herd of elk before. In winter, not long after we moved into this house, John woke me up to tell me that our backyard was absolutely filled with elk. (I reluctantly admit that I asked him to take a picture for me and went back to sleep. Fail.) When Amanda and I hiked during her visit, we saw a compressed area of grass where the animals like to rest. We saw their prints, literally in my backyard.
It’s a cool reminder that we share these glorious mountains with lots of creatures. I hope they know they are welcome and safe.
Thinking about the winter and our hillside made me remember that even though Utah had a miserable year for snow, I yearned for springtime to arrive in Park City. Spring comes later up here than in Salt Lake. You may even remember that the April Fool’s Day surprise snowstorm prompted a mini-meltdown on my part that ultimately resulted in this blog! Looking outside today, it’s amazing to think that the view was anything BUT green. So I checked out some photos and reminded myself.
The back view in February, March, and April:
The front views through those months:
And one in the other direction from March:
I took these shots this morning:
In any season, our views are fantastic and I feel extremely lucky to live here. Come August, I’ll start to think fondly about snow, wish I could wear slippers in front of the fire, daydream about Christmas and long, snowed-in days cooking something hearty in the kitchen. Knowing this about myself makes me want to try to be content in the present a little bit more.
And to enjoy the view. Because it’s spectacular.
PS. I came across this photo of mini-Cholula in February when I moved out of my condo. She’s so much bigger now. Another reminder to enjoy the moment!