DETROIT LAKES, Minn. — Dave Baer has gained notoriety from his nature photography. In fact, some would describe his pictures as playful. While others said his photos evoke a feeling of the spiritual.
He and others drove out west for some outdoor photography. They captured amazing, wildlife pictures. But nothing prepared him for a stop at Yellowstone National Park.
"(You) parked way down and walked yourself in and find a spot with all the photographers and people with spotting scopes and binoculars," Baer explained.
On the banks of the Yellowstone River sat a huge grizzly. The bear is better known to rangers as #791.
"He was basically laying there, he got up, he was moving around a little, but would lay down because he was tired and had a full belly, he was protecting the area," Baer said.
That's because #791 was keeping watch over his trophy kill, a huge elk.
"He had dug out that whole bank and covered it up and it was just the neck and antlers in the water that was visible," Baer described. "So he would dig it up and eat some and cover it back up and sat there protecting that area. That is the photo I got I thought was the best."
Baer and the other photographers just kept their cameras rolling on the scene. He described the sounds of shutters closing as like machine guns going off.
Just hours earlier, the internet had blown up with this video.. the same grizzly taking down the elk in the river. Word spread, and Dave got in on this photographer's dream nature shoot that likely will never be repeated anytime soon.
"It was surreal," Baer said. "As an amateur, and I am sure the pros think this too, you know when it is a special moment, just to be there during that moment, priceless."
Baer says shortly after he left Yellowstone, a pack of wolves and another, older bear tried to fight the grizzly for a piece of that prize. The older bear won.
To see more of Dave Baer's photos, visit the Baer's Den Photography Facebook page.