On 04/01/14 (Yes, April Fools Day) the Wolf Ridge Organic Farm Manager, David Abazs, left a phone message for me with the naturalist wing at the West Dorm. “David wanted to let you know that there is a Lynx sleeping behind his house” says naturalist Susan Delfs. I didn’t believe it at first and was very skeptical. David is known for his friendly joking and teasing antics and he knew that I had been dying to see a Lynx in the flesh. I called the house and spoke with his wife, Lise Abazs. She assured me that there was indeed a Lynx and that it had been there since 8am (It was currently 11am). I acted quickly and grabbed a pair of snowshoes, a few naturalist friends, and we got into the car. Roads were Icy and snow was steadily drifting down around us. We pulled in to the end of the Abazs’ road and made the trek up to their home, the Round River Farm. As we came out of the woods and saw the house, I crept very quietly towards the porch. David appeared through the front door wearing a t-shirt and carhartts. With a sincere expression on his face he beckoned me inside.
Lise called from across the room “He started to move off and I lost him, I don’t know where he went”. I looked out the window and saw nothing. She made her way to the other side of the house and called from the bathroom “He is about 8 feet from the window now, come quick!”. I made my way there, FAST. As soon as I had gotten there she said, “It just walked out of sight!” I couldn’t believe it and was beginning to become frantic. The lynx had walked between the windows, at an angle which made it impossible to see the animal. I waited for about minute in silence, peering through the glass when suddenly he appeared; right in front of the window! The Lynx’ back was dusted in fresh snow and small whisps of powder were kicked up as he floated on top of the snow effortlessly. By the time I managed to shoot a photograph with my point-and-shoot camera, he had moved off about 35 feet away. The solitary stalker turned back and looked at us for about 10 seconds before disappearing into the forest…A deep happiness welled from within me. All of the hours I had spent tracking and waiting, and placing trail cams, and driving backroads with fingers crossed had finally climaxed into a real life sighting! What amazing and curiously elusive creatures. I thanked David and took some photos of the minutes-old Lynx tracks in the snow for my records. What a morning!