There has been a Snowy Owl reported at Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge so yesterday Jolie Gordon and myself went up there in my Jeep to see if we could find it. The fog was icy, heavy, thick and we could feel ice particles on our skin. The conditions were dreadful. We went slow and carefully looked for the owl on the playa s even before we got to the auto tour route. Actually we started looking for the Snowy Owl before we even got off of I-15. We dipped on the Snowy Owl and got Barn Owls in flight instead.
Everyone who was looking for the Snowy Owl dipped on it.
We saw about 11 Barn Owls yesterday morning but the last one we saw was the most cooperative. I drove in front of the Barn Owl and then maneuvered my Jeep so we had a clear view of the Barn Owl flying right at us next to the road. When it passed by us it was so close I clipped the owls wings even though I was using full frame (FX) mode on my D810.
I usually try to avoid being so close to my subject that I clip wings, tails or feet but in this case it was the Barn Owl who decided the distance between us.
Part of the reason we struggled so much yesterday to find the Snowy along with everyone else who was searching for it was the thick fog that enveloped the refuge. My cell phone pictures below show those conditions.
Trying to find a white Snowy Owl in fields of white snow in a foggy white out. Next to impossible!
But we got to see and photograph the Barn Owls and they were very much worth the drive. And it isn’t every day that I can say I went looking for a Snowy Owl and got Barn Owls in flight instead at Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge.
Life is good.