Just last week I was spending time with my family in Lassen Volcanic National Park, one of my favorite places on Earth. We had just finished a hike and were driving to a nearby lake to relax before heading back to the cabin. I was in the passenger seat, my dad was driving, and I just happened to look left and there, right next to the road, was this bear! I probably scared my dad half to death as I yelled "Bear, bear, bear! Please pull over, please pull over!" I just happened to have my camera in my lap with a 300mm lens already mounted. I expected the bear to run away immediately, so I started snapping any and every shot I could get, but I kid you not, this bear stayed around, sniffing, eating, and exploring the roadside for at least 10-15 minutes. I must have taken 40 or 50 photographs during that time, my favorite of which is the one you see here, of this beautiful fluffy bear climbing it's powerful mass up a tree with the greatest of ease. An absolute privilege and extremely humbling experience.
"Bears keep me humble. They help me to keep the world in perspective and to understand where I fit on the spectrum of life. We need to preserve the wilderness and its monarchs for ourselves, and for the dreams of children. We should fight for these things as if our life depended upon it, because it does."
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