First of the West

A red squirrel sits on a tree branch beside Shoshone Lake on the Shoshone Lake Trail at Yellowstone National Park

I was first exposed to the noisy chatter of red squirrels while hiking in West Virginia when I lived back east. I would see them a few times more before moving to Oregon, where I wouldn’t see or hear them again until my first real trip to Yellowstone in 2004. On my first hike in my first few hours in the park, I came across this red squirrel near the beach of Shoshone Lake on the Shoshone Lake Trail. I’ve since seen them quite a bit in the park, but good pictures usually elude me, so this first picture remains my favorite of my pictures of red squirrels in Yellowstone.

Gargoyle

Our cat Templeton peering down from my bookcase

Templeton used to love to sleep atop the bookcases but as he aged he had trouble jumping that high. If he sat beside my bookcase to indicate he wanted up, I’d place him up there for a catnap and get him down when he woke up. On this particular day, I climbed on top of a chair so that we’d be eye to eye when I took the picture.