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A Stunning Encounter

During the second stage of my retracing Wandering Italia, something incredible happened: a special encounter, an everlasting moment, a lifetime experience…

I’m slowly driving down towards Castelluccio flat land, stopping time to time to take pictures of the snowy landscape. While I’m searching the best spot to shoot the village perched on the hill in front of me, I see something running in the valley; because of all the cars and tourists around, I think it’s probably just a dog. What else could it be?
But then I look over the vast plateau and I can not see anyone around, anyone is following it. Then I realise it has to be what I was already denying as a remote probability: right here, right now, I’m having the encounter I have been desiring and wishing for so long! But then, too fast, the wolf already disappears under the natural large terrace where I am…
What to do?
Quickly I consider the only two options it looks I have: drive back to find a better spot? Run towards the edge of the hill?
Then I see another wolf, faraway, crossing the road where the plateau starts, running after the first one.
Everything happens quickly: I jump in to the car, drive about 100 m; then quickly I change the lens, set up the reflex and shoot!
Of course, the wolf is too faraway to get perfect pictures, I already know that…but who cares? Pictures are not the purpose but the way to eternalise emotions, moments…and I just had an incredible and unforgettable experience.
My heart beats fast, a smile grows inside and explodes on my face…

After that I’ve been looking for it, that I felt it, that I sniffed it; after I heard it howling in the night, from my tent; after I found, the day after, its footprints so close and fresh; after I listened to so many stories and legends about it; after we have probably been so close during my entire trip and still we never met… here it is: finally my first encounter with a wolf! Where I didn’t think it was possible, in a day I didn’t wish for it.
Was it just a chance, a luck? Maybe, probably…
But I like to think today I had to be here, in this place and at this time, to have an encounter we planned so long time ago…

When I reach the plateau I look again for them.
I see them run faraway, free, towards the snowy wild mountains…

Camera: Nikon D750
Lens: Tamron SP 150-600mm F/5-6.3 Di USD G2 SLR

If you like this story and you would like to know more about the Wandering Italia  Project
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