October 31, 2007 – The Pryor Mountains

As requested, here is panoramic photograph I just took of the Pryors. (It’s pretty big, so click the picture for a full version.) It’s hazy today, so the quality isn’t that great. The snow received yesterday has already melted quite a bit; it had been down Sykes Ridge yesterday afternoon.

Mountain

Also, I took that same picture and wrote some general locations on it to give an idea of where the range lies on the mountains. The range is on East Pryor Mountain. There aren’t any wild horses on the West Pryor/Big Pryor mountain anymore, though I have talked to many people who used to see horses there quite often. On East Pryor I have a little more detail in labeling areas that I often talk about here. The Bighorn Canyon area is just on the other side of Sykes Ridge.

Mountain

I am planning to make a nicer looking map and view of the Pryors to post here sometime, but until then this at least gives an idea of what I talk about.

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Published in: on October 31, 2007 at 12:40 pm  Comments (5)  

October 24, 2007 – Mountaintop

Last Tuesday (the 24th) was a beautiful sunny day, and I went on the mountain with someone to watch the horses. Due to the warmth, the snow had melted a lot; and there were many horses in the meadows near Penn’s Cabin. The first thing new I noticed was that Teton’s two year old colt wasn’t with the family anymore.

Teton family

Stiles and Himalaya

It isn’t a big surprise that he wasn’t with them as he is getting to that age. I did see a pair of bachelors nearby, and he wasn’t with them. There are a few other ones he could be with, or he could be alone. By now, it also wouldn’t surprise me if he is back with the family.

I also got some good opportunities to see Morning Star’s September foal. She looks fairly healthy; but notice the size of her compared to her dun big brother who was born earlier in the summer. It gives an idea of how big foals normally are as they go into their first winter. It’s hard to not get too attached to the little ones sometimes, but it should be kept in mind that winter is a big natural selector on young horses and this isn’t necessarily bad to have this natural population control.

Hera

The highlight of my day then was definitely Lakota’s yearling colt. Lakota and Prince’s families were both near the snow fed watering hole in the meadows. Prince’s family was below Lakota’s, but Prince was with Lakota’s family. There was a little ice and water accumulated there, enough for the horses to water in.

Lakota family

As the families started to move out of there, Prince and the yearling colt started playing.

Playing

Playing

Playing

Playing

Playing

Playing

While this was happening, Coronado moved his family into the area and tried to mess with the colt. Prince apparently didn’t approve of this; he postured and kicked at Coronado. Coronado then left.

Playing

Prince moved back with his and Lakota’s families while Coronado was moving through, and then the colt started playing with his father Lakota.

Playing

Playing

Playing

By this time, Morning Star has brought his family down; and he came out to play too.

Playing

Playing

Playing

Soon after, Lakota had enough with Morning Star being there; so he got him out of there. Prince saw the commotion and he moved Lakota’s family up towards Lakota.

Running

When the family was all together, they ran up the hill.

Running

Once they got to the top, they started grazing and resting again; and that concluded the colt’s playing. It was a great show, and it was even nicer because I had a borrowed 400mm lens that day. I haven’t been on the mountain since then as I didn’t get a chance to go up during the weekend. It was stormy here yesterday, and I can see that the Pryors have snow on top again. I’ll be going on the mountain this weekend, and I probably won’t need to go as high to find the horses.

Published in: on October 31, 2007 at 11:51 am  Leave a Comment  

October 20, 2007 – Burnt Timber

On October 20, we went up to Cheyenne Flats again. As we got up there, it was lightly snowing. The first horses we spotted were Starman and Santa Fe’s families. They were on a ridge that came down from the flats, so we went up further to see who else was on the flats. Three bighorn sheep were grazing there, and Jackson’s family was grazing nearby while Jackson watched over them.

Jackson

Jackson’s family

Just up the road we saw Teton’s family in a small clearing.

Teton’s family

Stiles had found them again.

Stiles

Near them, Lakota’s family was in a drainage coming off of the flats. White Cloud was also visible in the same place he had been the previous day, and Baja was also visible on another nearby ridge. It was a great day up there, and the light snow made it even better.

Published in: on October 23, 2007 at 11:25 am  Comments (1)  

October 19, 2007 – Burnt Timber

On October 19, I went up Burnt Timber with some visitors. There was a good amount of snow in the mountains, and so I figured there would be some horses that had moved down into the middle elevation flats called Cheyenne Flats. Upon arriving, we didn’t see any horses on the flats. I scanned Sykes Ridge with my binoculars and didn’t see any there either. As I looked up Cheyenne Flats I saw a black horse pop out. I was getting ready to drive us up a little closer when he started running in our direction. At that point, I recognized him as Stiles, the stallion who is usually with Teton’s family.

As he ran closer, he started calling out very loudly. He didn’t seem to have any concern for us, though; and he ran right past us while calling out.

Stiles

Stiles

As he neared the end of the ridge, he stopped and let out another series of loud calls. He started to run back and then stopped near some trees. He turned and looked at us before calling out again and running into the trees and down into an adjacent canyon area.

Stiles

We continued up the road and eventually saw the families of Looking Glass, Lakota, White Cloud, and Starman. We also saw the bachelors Two Boots and Doc together. It was fun seeing those families, but it was really great to see Stiles like that. I would guess he had gotten separated from Teton’s family and was very upset about it. He may have caught their scent coming from the canyon area as we didn’t see him at all after that during the day.

Published in: on October 23, 2007 at 11:18 am  Leave a Comment