David McMahon

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This Grizzly Charged Me

Published February 23rd, 2012

A ONE-IN-A-MILLION WILDLIFE PHOTO. I GAVE IT MY BEST SHOT (LITERALLY)

There was no sound at all when the grizzly charged. No roar. No blood-curdling snarls. Most of all, there was no warning.

He just launched himself at us. I’d been told just how rapidly a grizzly can move, but I was astounded at how quickly he covered the 25-30m that separated us. I didn’t even have time to register the fact that his claws were visible (see image).

That, and how deathly silent it was.

The last place you’d expect to be charged is when you’re about five minutes away from your car, after a six-hour hike through Kluane National Park, a World Heritage Site in the Yukon.

As part of a seven-person group hiking through Kluane National Park in northern Canada on 1 September 2008, I took heart from the fact that our guide, Brent Liddle of Kluane Ecotours, told us that he was armed with bear spray.

He briefed us well before we set off from the car park at Lake Kathleen, surrounded by birch, spruce and aspe ...

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USE (AND MISUSE) OF THE DISLIKE OPTION

Published December 15th, 2011

I have a (VERY) carefully-considered suggestion to make.

I know a lot of photographers have been calling for a total ban on the "dislike" option, but I would actually say no, let the "dislike" option continue.

However, anyone who "dislikes" an image should a) be identified and b) give a reason for the dislike.

Personally, I would never retaliate against anyone who "dislikes" my work. That is their undeniable right in an international artistic democracy.

I believe in the full gamut of artistic criticism - without the cloak of anonymity.

Anonymity, alas, spawns cowardice, which has no place in this global village.

David (McMahon)

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