The National Bison Range was established in 1908 by President Theodore Roosevelt after the bison reached a low of 100 animals from the millions just a century earlier. The original herd was purchased with private funds and donated to the preserve. Today the range maintains a herd between 300-500.
We got up early, but not early enough. The larger herds were not in view, but we did see a few loners out and about.
We did see a bear. He crossed the road in front of us, but by the time I got the camera out, he was headed up into the woods.
We drove through this large herd of Big Horn Sheep.
They weren't too concerned about us, just moving off the road enough for us to pass by.
We spotted this beauty across the hills. First we thought it was an Elk, but now I think it was just a deer. What do you think?
We did see lots of antelope.
We even spotted another bear running up a hillside. I thought it might be a wolf, but it was probably a bear. I didn't get a picture of it because he was running too fast.
Again, we thought this might be another Elk, but again, I think it was just a deer.
Even though we didn't see a lot of buffalo, we did see lots of other animals on our trip through the Bison Range.
This is lots of antlers.
From there, we headed to Ninepipes Lodge. We were told they had some great taxidermy scenes.
It wasn't just stuffed animals, they were staged in very lifelike situations, like this alligator taking down a wild pig.
Or this mountain lion after a big horn sheep.
The bear catching a salmon.
Or the bear taking down an elk.
It was some very creative taxidermy. Well worth going to see.
Mr. Copenhaver, now deceased I believe, was not just a friend of my fathers, but served onboard the USS Maryland during WWII with my father. He spent most of his career as a wilderness outfitter in the Bob Marshall Wilderness area, and is author of several books about his adventures.