As I cooled my trail-weary feet in a Colorado mountain stream, I noticed a small creature flitting above the water about tree top height. A glut of recently hatched gnats no doubt inspired the critter’s erratic hover. The flier was bat-sized, a little small for a bird, and its flight was bat-like as well. Yet the evening seemed too early for bats. I watched for several minutes trying to distinguish bat or bird and finally got the right angle to see that the head was bird-like.
Shortly after that, as I sat beside our camper, something flew just over my head and apparently clung briefly to the side of the camper. I kept still so as not to startle it, and it, a small brown bird, dropped onto my knee for several heartbeats. Much as I’d like to believe it, I know that bird didn’t perch on me knee to show me for certain that it wasn’t a bat.
It was trying to decide whether I was person or yeti.