I was walking along a well used trail not far off from the road in Yosemite Valley when all of a sudden someones dog walked out from the brush in front of me.
Yes, dog was my first thought for I never imagined a coyote to be so calm about walking out in front of me then continuing on the trail at a leisurely pace.
Picture, yes, take a picture. You have a camera in your hand idiot! In a mild case of coyote fever I fumbled about with the camera and was able to get a few photos.
I began to stalk him through the brush hoping to get closer but he easily wandered through it all while I bumbled about breaking twigs, branches, stumbling over roots and rocks. I gave up rather quickly.
A few more distant hand-held pictures with camera settings all askew
and he was gone.
I was pleased with my pure dumb luck of an encounter then began to feel bad about the two young women behind me. They were European, only one spoke English and they were wandering about aimlessly not knowing where to go or what to see. I figured they were just here for the day as they didn't have much with them - no food or bottles of water, and had parked their car a mile or so back at the village. I had gave them a map and suggested Happy Isles where they would pass Camp Curry along the way. Up to that point they had been in front of me but once we talked they fell back. If only they had stayed with me a few yards further, they too would have seen the coyote and be thrilled at seeing the "wild animal" that they told me they were wishing for. But then again, they may have just thought it someones dog.