Friday, September 2, 2011

The Beautiful Prairie

Last year when we came to the prairie east of Denver, it was the end of September. The fields were brown and most flowers were gone. The trees were losing their leaves. We came this year mid-August and were pleased to see a lot of green still around, with wildflowers blooming and trees looking lush. I wanted a photo of the fields of wild sunflowers, and I'd hoped to see some pronghorns, too. On this day we got both! These 5 or 6 critters watched us watching them, then they bounded off through the golden sunflowers. Last winter we did not see a single pronghorn and I had begun to doubt that they were around. Where were they hiding, I wonder? (Click to enlarge the photo so you can see the pronghorns better.)

 A few more miles down the dusty gravel roads we were surprised by this bonus, 20 or 30 antelope, also in the midst of a field of sunflowers. You can get a good idea how flat the prairie is, stretching to the horizon.

 What? Llamas out here on the prairie? I love llamas so I always take photos when I see them. It was a hot day in the 90s, but these guys didn't seem to mind. They weren't seeking the shade near the barn.

One last glimpse, a lone pronghorn. This photo shows different prairie vegetation, lots of prairie grasses and some yucca plants. We have enjoyed the prairie at this stage of summer. Soon it will be back to the browns and tans and naked trees and bushes of winter, also beautiful in its own way.

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