July 30, 2014

Going on a Bear Hunt

Alan flew back out to make our family complete again.  The kids were all glad to see their dad! We packed up the car and we are heading back across the country!  The long journey home has commenced and we will zig zag our way across the country as we explore fun adventures along the way.

First stop:

Bear World!

I had bought the tickets to this adventure months prior and I couldn't wait to see the kids expressions when I told them that they were going to bottle feed baby bear cubs!

Alan and I tag teamed our way through this one, as Ty wasn't allowed in and the sun was too much for Bridger so one of us waited in the gift shop with Bridger and his buddy while the other served as photographer.

It was all I could do not to jump the fence and come pet the adorable little bear cubs as they fed them!

After the feeding came Eliza's favorite part -- the petting zoo.

She is her daddy's girl and has a love and fascination with wildlife.  She loves everything from venison jerky to her pink John Deere overalls - which she calls her "buck pants" because of the logo.

She was completely fascinated to get to actually touch the antlers still in velvet.

I thought that Bridger's little hand would like to touch the antler too so I held his little fingers hand over hand and let him feel the soft antler.  Bridger, whose face I could not see behind me, started giggling. The crowd that was watching as held his fingers out started laughing too.  I thought they were laughing at Bridger's expression to the feel of the antler. When the laughter got louder I turned around to see a deer that had wondered up to Bridger and started nibbling on his head and licking his face.  See that big ol' deer tongue lapping up the side of Bridger's head?  ew. My germaphobe self resisted the urge to throw up when I saw that and just laugh along with him. Yeah, he had  a long bath thick with suds that night.

After the petting zoo was Bridger's favorite part -- carnival rides.

He is a boy that loves everything in motion.  I got my workout carrying him around there and lifting him in and out of the rides.  I am grateful that Lance and Eva are strong and capable enough to watch over him on these rides so I don't have to squeeze my hips on the kiddie cars any more.  There was never a graceful way to get in and out of those.

After the rides came my favorite part - the drive-thru wildlife tour.

I could drive hours and days through Yellowstone and never see as many bears.  No zoom used.  These bears were close enough to touch.

We had quite a show as a big bruin approached the car ahead of us.  Curiously, he looked around the big red truck.  Then, he suddenly reached up and grabbed the side view mirror and began shaking the truck and bending the mirror.  The driver went from taking some amazing pictures of a bear close up to frantically trying to pull away before his side mirror was ripped off and paint clawed away. 

Our family watched in amazement then panicked as the bear came right up to our driver's side to do the same.  I let him get this close and then pulled away just before he jumped on his hind legs to grab my mirror too.  

Yipes! Too close for comfort. This mama bear had her fill.  Time to keep moving on down the road!