Sunday, May 26, 2013

Return to the Black Hills


What a great day! 
 

The dire forecasts couldn’t have been more wrong – the weather was ideal.  After a foggy, drizzly start, we ended up with blue skies and temperatures in the 60s. 
Quite simply …. it was a good day to be alive. 
Herd of Antelope
 
 
I spent part of the day in Custer State Park and the other part at Wind Cave National Park.  If you enjoy wildlife at every turn surrounded by magnificent scenery, come here at once!







 

I had always planned to camp at Custer State Park but fate placed me here on Memorial Day weekend.  However, as so often happens, it worked out fine.  It was so early when I got there and the road was so inviting .... I moved on. 
Being so close to these magnificent creatures left me breathless!
 


This massive bull got right up to the GDB.  I took the hint and gave him my spot.

Prong-Horn Antelope
 
I stopped at both Wind Cave National Park and Jewel Cave National Monument.  I didn’t tour either because, well, caves kind of freak me out.  But I learned a lot touring the exhibits.    Sorry no photos – my camera battery ran out of juice during the wildlife drive, as you can imagine. 


Female Prong-Horn



2 young bulls play fighting.
 
I landed for the night back in Chadron, Nebraska.  It’s good to be back in the Sandhills again.  I really love it here.   

Tomorrow holds great promise as well – the Agate Fossil Beds and Scotts Bluff. 

19 comments:

  1. Wow, you are really seeing some fabulous animals and scenery. I'd love to see a buffalo up close like that. :)

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  2. Wonderful pictures. You must have felt thrilled to see them all.

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    1. A true thrill. One of the reasons I wanted the GDB so badly is so I could revisit the buffalo on better terms. Now I can go out amongst them and serve myself high tea if I want!

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  3. Nice of the weather to do right by you and let you enjoy the day. Great photos

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    1. Thanks Jo. What did we do before digital photography?

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  4. I'd love to see a buffalo up close. I'd be afraid to see a buffalo up close. But it would be cool....kinda... ;-) glad you had a good weather day!

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    1. It's an intense experience. Like I said, I realized when I got so close to that bull that I was holding my breath.

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  5. I have never been to Ne, ND or SD but your post are making me want to go!..

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    1. The Dakotas are great - especially if you lie densely populated, wide-open, clean, quiet spaces. You don't think of NE as a vacation destination, but (as I found out by accident 10 years ago) the Sandhill area is just magnificent. And the people are so nice. People smile and tell you to have a good day like they mean it.

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  6. I've never been able to get that close to the antelope. Enjoyed the pics.

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    1. Thanks, Judy - that's a real compliment coming from you!

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  7. Gorgeous scenery. And GREAT wildlife photos. The bison look majestic (and a bit terrifying), and the mule deer photo especially interested me. They are so different from our white tailed deer. And I'd give the big bull my spot, too! :)

    Caves freak me out, too.

    So glad you are having beautiful weather. I'm looking forward to hearing about the Agate Fossil Beds.

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    1. Yes, that big bull actually took my spot. As soon as I moved the GDB and looked back he was munching away exactly where I had been parked.

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  8. Probably overly cautious on my part, but there are always two extra charged-up batteries in my camera bag in case the one in the camera becomes too exhausted to take any more snapshots!

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    1. Good idea. But I think the Lithium batteries cost about $40 a piece. Fortunately mine recharges in a big hurry.

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  9. Wow, you are living my dream!! Would love to see all these places, but especially the Dakotas. Have never been. Okay, question, and you know more about this than I do so pardon my ummmm, ignoramosity, but we have Pronghorn here in Texas - what you labelled a mule deer, isn't that a Pronghorn antelope? Aren't mule deer larger and gray? (We used to have mule deer in Sedona where I lived). Anyway, whatever, I LOVE the photos and am so loving your blog. hugs, Jool in North Texas

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    1. Ding, ding, ding! We have a winner! Jool wins today's misidentified wildlife photo contest. I changed it. Thanks, followers, for keeping me honest~

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  10. What a great day. I love seeing wildlife.

    If you like bison, head to Yellowstone. Before long, you'll be cursing them because they cause massive traffic jams on the park roads. There are so many of them.

    We loved Custer State Park and the Black Hills.

    You sound like you're having a blast!
    TravelBug-Susan

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