Montana Outdoors

April 9, 2007

“Where the deer and the antelope play”

Filed under: Antelope, Montana, Mule deer, Nature, Outdoors, Photos, Pictures, White-tail deer — montucky @ 8:53 pm

In contrast to the mountain scenery that I love so much, there’s another side to Montana; the huge plains east of the divide. Every October I travel to the east side for an antelope hunt, and while I consider the mountains around my home to be nearly unparalleled in beauty, the vastly different scenery of the plains has its own appeal.

The Musselshell river valley with the Beartooth Mountain range (at the north border of Yellowstone) in the background:

It’s because of views like this that Montana is known as the “Big Sky” state. (Looking east toward the Dakotas.) This is 350 miles from my home near the Idaho border.

It’s no wonder that the survival strategy of the antelope utilizes excellent vision and incredible running ability.

There are occasional breaks in the amazing flatness of this land, but little to provide cover or hiding places for them, and yet the number of animals living here is astounding. While simply driving along a 50 mile stretch of US Highway 12 on my last trip I counted 149 deer (both white-tails and mule deer live here) and 175 antelope.


While our camping area in the low land along the river does little to shelter us from the incessant wind, it is certainly easy on the eyes!



  1. These are very lovely pictures. I’ll forewarn you – you post any more of these and you’ll get more tourists than you could ever support. I’ve been reading through your post and it sounds like you’re a very lucky man. I really appreciated the hoof print of the elk. In the last few days we’ve ran into trying to figure the difference between and elk and moose print. Your site helped me. Thank you.


    Comment by aullori — April 9, 2007 @ 10:33 pm

  2. aullori,

    Thank you for the visit and your kind words. I am in love with this wild country in the west, and I have found that others enjoy seeing it as well and that is why I write about it. I feel very fortunate to live here.

    I am somewhat familiar with your area in Washington and have seen some of its beauty too.

    At the moment I don’t have any photos of moose prints, but the next time I can clearly identify one I’ll take a picture and send you a copy. I usually see several every year, usually on a fishing trip.


    Comment by montucky — April 9, 2007 @ 11:39 pm

  3. Well, I’m looking forward to more of your posts (no pressure there tho – at your leisure) I’m also as in love with the west. I once drove to New York and spent about six days driving in the east wanting nothing more than to get back to our area of the country. (I found myself unexplainably grumpier and grumpier as the days passed.) The day I saw the Rockies in Montana it suddenly felt like my breath entered my body for the first time in a week. Then I saw the tumble weed float across a vast plantation and I felt a joy to this day I cannot describe. I never thought I’d miss a tumble weed. I then walked into a Quickie Mart and a big fellow with a cowboy hat taunted my son because he did not open the door for me. I felt pretty blessed at that point, here is my home, here are my people – this is my world. One that I share with some of the best people in the world (in my ever so humble opinion.) Going east was a neat adventure – and it was really wonderful seeing a firefly for the first time. However coming west to Montana always feels like home.

    Sincerely I like the way you write. I read through your story on fly fishing last night and I thought it wonderful. It spoke of experience – which is a rare in blogs. (Most write on theory) It is usually metaphysical mumblings that tells the reader very little about the life of the person. You also do really have an amazing eye for telling a story in photographs as well. I’m being repetitive but I’m looking forward to more of your posts.


    Comment by aullori — April 10, 2007 @ 9:03 am

  4. Thanks again for your very nice comments, aullori. I guess when you fall in love with the west, and especially the wild country of the west it’s forever. I share your feeling of being blessed to live here. Now if we can just get more people to appreciate it for what it is, learn to love it , and refrain from exploiting it!

    I write what I see and what I have seen over many years and still remember. It’s my hope that will give some folks a little insight into what the natural world is all about.


    Comment by montucky — April 10, 2007 @ 7:59 pm

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