30 June 2022

Beheld

Wednesday, January 5th, 2022
Audience of Mule Deer, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 05 January 2022.
Audience of Mule Deer.

We were supposed to get showers today, and I actually thought dog and I might skip our daily hike for a change. But when I saw only a bare hint of drizzle, I decided we might as well take a walk in the rain.

Mule Deer.

Very few birds to speak of, slippery, slushy snow, a struggle to keep my camera dry—but then we came around a curve in the deer trail we take every morning and (surprise, surprise!) encountered a little gang of deer.

But this was a unique sort of deer encounter. It truly was a surprise.

I’d been scanning little Coyote Canyon below us, when my GoPro emitted the series of beeps signaling the fact that its battery’d run out of juice. We stopped so I could change batteries, and I happened to glance upslope—and not 50 feet above us stood a motionless collection of deer. Just standing there, watching us. They didn’t budge as I took a few photos and changed the battery, and then we continued on our quiet way.

The moment stands as the highlight of our drizzly stroll. Truly made me feel like we three species were all fellow members of the animal kingdom just going about our business.

(But talk about feeling seen.)

Grandeur Peak Area List
At 09:45 MST, I hiked a few hundred feet up a mountain.

1. Dark-eyed Junco
2. House Finch** (v)
3. Rock Pigeon*
4. Woodhouse’s Scrub-jay (v)
5. Black-billed Magpie (v)
6. Song Sparrow (v)
7. Pine Siskin (v)

Mammals

Mule Deer

(v) Voice only
*Also elsewhere
**Voice only elsewhere

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Bird Report is a (sometimes intermittent) record of the birds I encounter while hiking, see while driving, or spy outside my window. —Brian Willson



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