Bovine Curiosity: Chasing a Paraglider

Just a quick post of something I “ran” into yesterday.

As I was driving back to Bellingham, Wash., on SR 542 after photographing a beautiful waterfall.

Just east of the town of Glacier, I saw a paraglider land. With his sail billowing in the gusty winds, he struggled to get control. He landed in a pasture with a couple of residents.

Robert gathers his shoot as a curious bovine gets close.

Eager about the new thing that just landed in their yard, two young steer came up to the flapping colors. What ensued was rather funny.

As the paraglider, Robert, gathered his chute, the bovine made for it. They were naturally attracted to the bright colors of his sail.

So, like any photographer, I pulled quickly over to grab my camera and get a few shots.

The pilot was concerned the two curious steer would attack him. No, they just wanted to know what the big puffy thing was in their pasture.

As he backed towards the fence, I shot photos. As I’ve been around cows a lot, I didn’t see any problem, just a good photo opp.

But the best photo I couldn’t shoot. My telephoto was too tight. As I was watching, both steer, attempted to lick the man’s sail. Robert pulled his chute closer and began backing up a bit faster. Rather funny. Next time I just need to grab both cameras.

As he backed up to the fence, he saw me taking photos and laughed.

“I’m afraid these animals might attack me,” he said.

“No,” I replied, “they’re just curious.”

So as he walked to the south end of the pasture where he could easily climb over, I ran to get my camera with the wide lens.

While he walked, he kept a wary eye on the two steer following him. He made it to a part of the fencing that he was able to get over.

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As he did, the more brave steer kept wanting to lick his chute. He quickly tossed it over the fence and as he did, I used one of my cameras to weigh it down. They cost quite a bit of money so tearing it was not on option. Besides, people have helped me with my gear when I needed it.

I shot a few more frames before Robert hopped over the fence and put away his chute. Just the sort of found features I like to shoot: funny moments.

Thanks for stopping by

Paul Conrad

Pablo Conrad Photography

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  1. LOL, they more have the look of ‘so, you land in our field without our permission what did you bring us as a thank you gift?’ :). Great shots and great mental pictures of the entire event.


    1. I absolutely agree Christopher.

      The best images are the unplanned events. Being at the right place at the right time.

      But, it was once told: “Luck favors the prepared.” Or something like that.

      Thanks for stopping by.


  2. Great story Paul. Your photojournalist’s instincts are well honed…to say nothing of your reflexes. Hope you didn’t scare too many drivers getting to the side of the road.



    1. Thanks Bronson.

      No, didn’t scare anyone. The road was empty of cars.

      The paraglider didn’t notice me until he was backed-up against the fence. When he saw me he laughed.

      Thanks for stopping by.


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