Darwin's Daughter

It’s fall and I’m standing on the bridge over Taylor Creek watching Kokanee spawn. Red salmon with elongated jaws clog the waterway below me.

Mergansers, Mallards, and Snow geese dive for roe.

A sow and her offspring have come to feast.

About to lift my camera, a woman wearing chic mountain apparel steps into my line of sight.

“Oh my,” she says, “I always heard you couldn’t get between a mama bear and her cubs. Turns out that isn’t true!”

She bounds off and I’m gasping like a kokanee taking it’s last breath. I want to laugh but maybe I’d better save her from herself. I’m wondering what to do when the woman next to me leans in.

“Don’t worry, that one is bound to be someone’s lunch. Just give her time.”