Kevin Shoban's picture

Sunol Bobcat

I hadn't seen a bobcat in over a year and was desperate to see one again, soon. I went hiking at one of my favorite places in Sunol, CA. The same place I had seen my last bobcat. Sadly it was mangy, but I watched it as it crouched down at the shore of a small pond to get some water, then walked away into the woods. On this day I hiked a new trail I had been wanting to hike for some time. The landscape was beautiful as I hiked up the craggy mountains. a couple of red-tailed hawks mobbed a golden eagle away from their nest, cows blocked the trail, and the warm spring air all made the day perfect for exploring. I mad it back to my car after hiking the six mile loop and I was just about ready to head back home. My better judgment decided to walk a bit farther to the area I had seen the bobcat a little over a year earlier. I made the hike, but there was no bobcat to bee seen near the pond. I walked around a little bit more, stopped to look at the landscape, preparing myself to make my way back o my vehicle and drive home. I then saw a spot on the top of a hill next to the pond. I looked through my telephoto lens and huzzah! It was a bobcat! I slowly walked up to the bobcat, watching it's body language (i've been studying bobcats and other native CA wildlife for the past three years) for signs of aggression, or fear. The bobcat was as mellow as I'd ever seen which is strange. Sunol doesn't get many hikers high in the mountains, so I'm sure this bobcat hasn't had much human interaction. I was sure to stay a safe distance away and hung out with the bobcat for around 10 min. as it just sat around, relaxing in the evening sun. This photo was taken right when the bobcat decided to stand up and walk away.The next year I saw the same bobcat again in the same area. He has a very distinct pissed off look about him, which is easy to spot.

197mm · f/7.1 · 1/640s · ISO 250
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