Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Antelope Spotting

You can learn a lot at rest stops. While waiting for my traveling companions, I struck up a conversation with a gentleman awaiting his passengers. Looking at the vast Wyoming landscape, I believe I muttered something to the effect, “this is truly magnificent in its own way.” The gentleman agreed, noting with some regret that his granddaughters spent most of their time in the back seat playing with their hand-held games. And his daughter sat in the passenger seat reading her book. I was about to tell him what I did to enjoy the ride when our respective parties reassembled and we left in separate vehicles.

All the way across Wyoming, I practiced antelope spotting. [Well, I thought the mammals in question were pronghorn antelopes but according to Wikipedia, they’re not antelopes at all so it is best to refer to them simply as pronghorns.] At any rate, sitting in the backseat with three suitcases piled to my left and a window to my right, I had a grand time trying to spot these graceful creatures. It takes concentration but is really quite rewarding. Often I’d see one wandering alone. One shared a spacious pasture with a scattering of cattle. One doe stood with her two fawns as if posing for a portrait. Once in a great while, a buck.

 As the sun began to sink toward the horizon, many seemed to settle down for the night, facing west. The only exceptions to the mammalian landscape of cattle and pronghorn were an occasional herd of horses and two mule deer. All of these creatures kept me delighted until dusk after the overcast sky was graced with rainbows that segued into sunsets before dissolving into rain.

And it was magnificent.

No comments:

Post a Comment