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Cataloochee Valley Elk Rut

Let me start with a disclaimer, all of my images were shot with a telephoto lens and at no time did I approach the elk. These are wild animals and they need to be observed at a respectable distance.

Our first trip to Cataloochee Valley back in August was a short one and unfortunately we never even saw a bull elk. This past weekend was different, we made it in Friday night and stayed until Sunday around lunch. Early fall is the rut and the bulls were abundant. I was able to get shots of 5 as well as a few of the cows and a calf or two.

The elk are most active early in the morning and late in the evening so we were up early and out in the valley ready to shoot. Saturday was a long day since we had been up late Friday doing a little nightscape photography and we ended up back down the valley in the dark trying it again.

Cataloochee Valley during the elk rut is a really unique experience. There are tons of people that seem to drive in for the day but I highly recommend spending a few nights in the campground.

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