The Grand Teton NP Spring Photos

It’s just about time for my fall trip to Yellowstone and the Grand Teton National Parks and I haven’t posted my spring photos from GTNP yet.  I admit, I’ve been remiss. I did post some of them in Facebook. However, as you may know, I’ve deleted most of my photos from FB for a variety of reasons.

I’m happy to report that I just added some of my favorite spring shots to the portfolio area of this blog. Look to the left panel. You’ll see, “Portfolio”. Click on it. That  will take you to those photos. Below is a teaser of what you’ll see.

Looking at You!

I hope you enjoy these photos and I’ll try to be a bit more prompt posting the fall photos.

Thanks for stopping by!

Bill

Vinzant / Cosnotti Memorial Jr. Golf Tournament

From August 6 through the 8th, the 48th annual the Vinzant / Cosnotti Memorial Junior Golf Tournament was held at the Sykes/Lady Golf course in Overland Park, Kansas. It is the largest tournament in the Midwest for kids ages 6 to 17. We had 398 golfers this year.

I’m fortunate to have been the event’s photographer for the past several years. It has been great fun to witness and record this event. I’ve seen several players go from just starting out to becoming excellent golfers. Some have even gone on to earn full golf scholarships.

Below are just a few my favorite shots from this year. BTW, Parents, if you see an image of your child here and would like it removed, please contact me at: billaraujo.ks@gmail.com. I will delete it from this post.

Day one was excellent even the weather cooperated

Great Swing!

 

Good follow-through!

You can see the intense concentration they have on these next few images

It’s amazing how intense these players can be. You’d think they’re not having fun but I can assure you there were many, many smiles and a lots of laughter as well.

It helps to hold your tongue just right when you swing. I know I have to…

Day two had some challenges because the weather turned on us. It rained. There was no lightning in the area so play continued. The players didn’t seem to mind. They just continued to slosh along.

Staying dry
Yes! We are having fun
Swinging in the rain, just swinging in the rain…..
There were some interesting lies
Even this Norther Flicker seemed to think so
Of course it’s about integrity and sportsmanship

Of course, this cannot be pulled off with out a host of fantastic volunteers

Explaining the rules and keeping score

There are always interesting head covers.

The younger golfers are always some of my favorite!

He actually hit the ball pretty well

At the conclusion of the tournament, everyone earned a trophy.

Everyone seem to have a great time and of course for me, it was great fun.

This could not have been done without the planning, coordination and direction from this great team of PGA Golf Professionals

Sean Chalk, PGA Head Professional;  Bess Quick, First Assistant Professional and Michael Tanner, PGA Director of Golf

All in all, I took almost 3,000 photos during the three days. Only 580 made it to the golf course website. If you’d like to see some fantastic young golfers, go to http://www.golfop.com  Click on “juniors” then on “Junior Golf Tournament”. Scroll down and you’ll see links to each days photos.

Thanks for coming by!

I know. I know. It’s not wildlife or landscapes but we did have a wild time….😜

Trumpeter Swans, Bald Eagles & More

I’ve never been disappointed with my day trips to Loess Bluffs. Each offers different photo ops and surprises. I always get there before sunrise to catch the soft glow of the morning sun. However my first surprise came before sunrise.

For about 6 to 8 minutes I watched tens of thousands of these black birds flying by in a tube formation like you might have seen on a wild bird documentary.  It was an awesome sight to see.

I didn’t hear many geese which was a little unusual. Normally there are thousands of them but…..

What I did hear and see were these.
 

Yes, they are Trumpeter Swans! I don’t remember seeing as many all at one time. Monday’s survey count was 1,303 of them. You can tell by the dark and somewhat reddish background this photo was taken just as the sun was coming up.

The next surprise happened just as the sun broke the horizon.  This bird was causing quite a stir with its low passes as it was hunting.

It’s a Northern Harrier Hawk. They have facial disks much like owls. It’s believed that it helps them hear better. They use both their keen eyesight and their hearing to locate and catch their prey.

Of course there are Bald Eagles. By the Survey taken Monday, there were 167 immature and 44 adults. I’ll bet, I saw at least half of them if not more. It was great!

This is an immature Bald Eagle. Their heads and tail do not turn white until they are 4 to 5 years of age.

It’s always good to get them in flight but to watch them interact with one another is even better.

The adult and the left was eating a duck when the immature flew in next to it.  I thought I might see a little skirmish but the adult quickly finished its meal. It then made this gesture as if to say, “So There!”

It’s a real treat to watch them interact with each other when there’s food to be had.

..

As you can see below, sometime they don’t give up too easily.
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The following photo is the one I like best.

YIKES!

Then, as the light got better, the swans looked even more beautiful.

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As you can see, the one on the right has been tagged.

Of course, those were not the only birds I saw.

How can you resist a red Norther Cardinal with a blue background?

I’m not 100% positive but I think this is a female Red-winged Blackbird.

A White-breasted Nuthatch

You’ve just got to photograph Red-tailed Hawks when you can!

The following Northern Harrier was just too accommodating. It continued to hunt close to me.

    

Ok, so I watched this eagle for an hour and twenty minutes hoping it would fly. I wanted to photograph it close-up on the wing. 

As you can see below, it was well worth the wait…..

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I was not disappointed!

It was a day filled with surprises but you know the biggest surprise of all was that I did not see a single mammal the entire day. Now, that is a first!  But you know what?  It was a great day for photographing the birds all the same.

I had a great time and hope you enjoyed the trip as well.

Thanks for coming by!

Bill