This beautiful bear is one of the largest black bears I’ve seen. I am guessing she was near 500 pounds! I happened upon she and her mate just before sunrise and spent 3 1/2 hours with them. This intimate shot is of her laying in the “nest” she had just dug out, as she prepares to sleep. Over the years I believe I have seen several of her offspring, all with the cinnamon or blond coat and the white crest on their chest. This matriarch has left quite a legacy here in the Lake Tahoe basin! The black fur to the left of her is her mate, also preparing to rest after a long night.