I’m sure happy we had Teddy Roosevelt as a president. On reflection he was responsible for a lot of what the U.S. is today. But on to the park!
The colors in this place are kaleidoscopic. In late summer and fall everything turns brown; this time of year it is as lush and green as you can imagine.
One of the first things we checked out was the Cottonwood campground where we considered checking last night to see if we could camp there. That would have been a mistake. We’re a bit too long for any of the sites we saw available, and a little bit too long for almost all of them. So, it was good we stopped where we did.
The first overlook we came to we were greeted by our first Bison. We saw several more during our drive through the 32 mile auto route.
Not long after that we visited one of several of the prairie dog villages along the route. For one thing, I don’t think I have ever seen as many of these little guys in one place before in my life. They’re a hoot to watch; even though they are considered varmints by farmers. In a place like this they are just cute and adorable.Whether digging new holes, or standing guard or just standing around in a familial group watching the tourists continue chattering back and forth to each other in a ‘tongue’ I can’t understand but do enjoy listening to.
The periodic puffs of dirt on the ground are merely Prairie Dogs mining new tunnels.
As I mentioned there are several villages where these guys can be found — they are the only park critters that are predictable. The rest of the park critters are much less predictable and if you listen to the visitor comments in the Vistors Center its easy to tell that success at seeing wildlife varies greatly here. Early morning and early evening are good times. During the middle of the day your success is much less likely.
There are also herds of wild horses. We saw a few small groupings but there are quite a few on the property. There are also antelope here — we saw some but they weren’t in places where it was convenient getting a decent shot.
And of course the notable animals are not all there is to see. I stopped to shoot some landscape shots and who did I find but this bumble boo pollinating a thistle!
The Featured Photo at the beginning of the article is a full frame shot of one of the Bison. With a 500mm lens this guy was so close I could only get half of him in the frame.
Thanks for stopping by, and I’ll talk with you tomorrow.