When it comes to winters... we are more than happy to see this one go. Here are a series of photos captured this past winter from around the ranch. It's time to view (hopefully) Jack Frost in the rear-view mirror!
The Cheyenne River on the first day of winter December 21st.
A rock cold heart exposed itself from the icy river water.
Winters first storm moved in that eventually blocked out the sun and dropped the conditions to below zero and single digit temps.
The human complaining began, but the buffalo move through unaffected with their thick, insulated coats.
Winters crystals clung to plants turning them into sculpture.
And frosted the buffalos coats like powdered sugared donuts (I wouldn't know anything about powdered sugar donuts... ;) ).
The bison foraged through the snow for food as they have done for thousands of years.
The occasional brilliant blue sky gave the illusion of warmth, but winter is a magician at temperature trickery.
Ferruginous hawks and other like species soared through the skies in search of their next meal.
The buffalo just chillin' on a wintry day.
The herd on the bottom ground, playful and waiting for spring!
But... more winter was in store and continued to blanket the prairie tundra.
The lead cow is on the move - taking the herd to new grazing ground.
A coyote moves around the edge of the herd unnoticed.
The buffalo moved over the winter ground kicking up snow as they go.
The bearded ones... they "herd" it was trendy!
March 8th, Colton and I open iced-over gates to get to the buffalo.
Colton unrolled a bale of hay with caution, offering the buffalo a little treat from their winter foraging.
The snow flakes caught glimpses of the sun, turning them into a confetti of color that floated over the buffalo.
Despite the cold, when the prairie meets the cobalt blue sky it is breathtaking in contrast.
A winter wonderland archway leads to home.
The thaw begins... and the mud follows, adding another layer to the buffalos coat.
On the first day of spring the sunrise painted the horizon, offering the promise of warmer days ahead.
The buffalo walked in the sun until it hid behind the horizon, waiting for the full moon.
Welcome spring! We've missed you.
Photo Credit: Jill O'Brien