I saw a coyote on my way to the cove…

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Ever since Chad Tracy and I “discovered” this little cove a few weeks back, I’ve wanted to return at sunrise to photograph it. There are big rocks and little rocks, jagged rocks and smooth rocks, and the view is undeniably quintessential Maine. Two times I’ve returned here at first light, but on both occasions I was far from impressed with how a very low tide had transformed the cove. A large swath of dark, seaweed-covered rocks made for an un-photogenic landscape, and both times I ended up punting and going here and hereย –ย where luckily I witnessed some gorgeous early morning light on those classic Schoodic round rocks. However, when I checked the tide charts for this weekend and noticed that high tide was going to coincide with sunrise, I figured it was time to return.

As I’ve mentioned fairly regularly, sunrise comes early to Maine in the summer months, and when you factor in a 75-90 minute drive to be in a particular location about an hour before the sun actually rises… well, you can imagine how jarring that 2:45 a.m. alarm sounds. I’m always wary when driving on rural roads at that time of night – or is that considered morning – since on more than one occasion I have encountered wildlife trying to get from one side of the road to the other. Animals I’ve seen include moose, deer, porcupine, raccoon, woodchuck, bobcat (my buddy Steve swears it was a mountain lion though)… and those are just the large-ish critters that have crossed my path!

Today though, I got to add another animal to my sightings list… a coyote. About ten minutes into my pre-dawn drive I saw a scrawny looking creature running across the road just on the furthest edge of my high beams. I’m fairly used to seeing deer while on the Maine roads at night, so initially I just assumed that’s what this was… a small deer. As I caught up to him though, it became obvious that it wasn’t a deer and that I had just seen my first Maine coyote! Looking for luck, I immediately convinced myself that a landscape photographer hoping for a glorious sunrise who spots a coyote crossing his path must be similar to anyone else having a black cat cross their path. That’s supposed to bring good luck, right?

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25 thoughts on “I saw a coyote on my way to the cove…

  1. I agree, you had good luck after your long drive this morning. Beautiful photos. Maybe we’ll also soon see some shots from all your experiences along the way to the coast?? ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • David Patterson

      Thank truels. There’s not that much between here and the coast to photograph, but in the next few weeks I have some plans to head inland toward the mountains. Stay tuned…

  2. 2:45 a.m.!! Seems like high tide is working for you in these pics. But I’m hearing Deep Purple’s “Smoke on the Water” as I look at these (which is not a bad thing). I saw a “yote” crossing the highway in PA driving home one night. I understand they are in every state now.

    • David Patterson

      I envy you living so close to my source material! At this time of year it gets awfully hard to get up early enough to be where I want to be before sunrise. Just this weekend the plans were abandoned at the last minute… just too early!

  3. Lovely images David. I must admit that I prefer to shoot at sunrise in late Autumn and early Spring, so that I can stay in bed til 5.30am; but your 2.45am rise was well worth it.

    • David Patterson

      Jim… thanks. Yeah, the summer sunrise around here gets awful early!

      PS> Love your work from Scotland… very impressive indeed!

  4. sarajweber

    These are outstanding! Beautiful colors in the last shot. My sister, father & I were at Jordan Pond late one night doing some night photography and got to hear the coyotes howling! A little spooky, but cool nonetheless. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • David Patterson

      Sara… thanks. I don’t think there’s anything more unsettling that hearing coyotes yelping in the dark. A few years back I spent a somewhat uncomfortable evening photographing at Mono Lake in California – that was my first time hearing coyotes in person, and it was indeed spooky. I had no idea there were coyotes on MDI, but maybe I shouldn’t be that surprised… my buddy the Rabid Outdoorsman (http://www.themaineoutdoorsman.com/) tells me they are everywhere.

    • David Patterson

      Thanks Robin… lovely morning it was indeed! I love seeing the wildlife too… just not while I’m driving ๐Ÿ™‚

    • David Patterson

      Rick… thanks. Getting out the door at 0245 usually means I don’t bother going to sleep. Makes it tough later in the day, but if I resist taking a nap, I can get caught up pretty quick.

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