The chickadee is such a friendly little bird and doesn't seem to mind the presence of humans. This little one kept me company for about half an hour and seemed entertained by my terrible mimicing calls. The thing about these little birds though is that they are so hyperactive that they are near impossible to photograph. No sooner did I start to focus when he'd be off to another branch. I never did get a good shot, most are missing tails or just a blur of feathers.
It had been my first visit to Bear Creek in almost a year, and I had never seen the resident mule deer before. They were equally curious about me. Unfortunately I no longer have my regular lens and have to use my zoom on everything, which is so frustrating when I find myself in close proximity to opportunities such as this but have to pan out for a longer shot just to focus. This little yearling was almost close enough to touch at one point. What I love is making eye contact with the animals, to see that they are seeing me, that they know I am there but its okay. I don't try to hide because if the animals know I am there they are less likely to be startled when I make a sudden move or sound.
The mule deer herd grazed next to me for close to an hour until some hikers came down the trail with a beagle who had scented the deer from up the hill and barked all the way down. The does ran over towards me, not the least be concerned by my presence, and waited to see what the beagle would do. I ended up shooing the deer away before the dog could come off the trail since the owners had absolutely no regard for the park rules (No Dogs!). I don't blame the dog, it was acting on instinct, but idiots like those hikers who blatantly disregard rules that were set up to protect the animals while at the same time allowing us to observe them in their natural habitat... well, folks like that justbug the stuffing out of me.