Montana Outdoors

July 22, 2018


Filed under: Animals, Montana — Tags: , , — montucky @ 3:02 pm


Porcupine ~ erethizon dorsatum

While they used to be plentiful in this region, Porcupines are pretty scarce now. This is one of my favorite pictures from back in 2008. He was hiding pretty well, wasn’t he!


July 8, 2018

A visit to the National Bison Range

Filed under: Animals, Bison — Tags: , , — montucky @ 6:24 pm

Briefly stated, the National Bison Range is a refuge that was established in 1908 by President Theodore Roosevelt for the conservation of the American Bison. It essentially consists of a small mountain that is a spur of the Mission Mountains, 18,800 acres (about 29 square miles) in size and ranges in elevation from 2,585 to 4,885 feet and it’s where a herd of bison (presently about 350) now range freely under reasonably natural conditions. Visitors can drive through it on a loop road about 20 miles long which takes them from the headquarters, up and over the crest of the mountain and back down the other side, returning to the headquarters. (For anyone interested in more information about the Bison Range, here is a link to the National Bison range website.)

National Bison Range

Looking west from where the road starts up the mountain

National Bison Range

Looking back down the road from about half way to the top

National Bison Range

Looking southwest from the top

National Bison Range

Looking north from the top at the Mission Mountain Range in the background. Sorry about the picture quality, but we are now receiving smoke from the fires burning in Utah and Colorado and including a little from the northern California fire.

American Bison

Cow and calf

American Bison

American Bison calf

Bison calf

American Bison

American Bison

This is a huge bull grazing right beside the road. Other an elephant, he is the biggest animal I’ve ever seen. It was taken at 70mm with a 70-300mm lens: unfortunately I didn’t have time to change to a wide angle lens for a full body shot.

American Bison

A bull taking it easy

American Bison calf

A calf standing in the road about 3 feet from my front bumper

American Bison

The huge bull again

The last photos following were taken of a large bull crossing Mission Creek not far from the headquarters. This is a fast moving stream and I have lots of experience wading them (including this one) but where he crossed it would have taken me off my feet. He didn’t seem to notice the current; of course, he weighs about a ton more than I do.

American Bison

American Bison

American Bison

American Bison

That’s a cloud of dust that he shook off his back as he climbed up the far bank.

December 30, 2017

Winter White Tail & Winter moon

Filed under: Animals, Moonrise, White-tail deer, Winter — Tags: , — montucky @ 9:49 pm

White tail deer

Winter moon

September 11, 2017

Denizen of the log deck

Filed under: Animals — Tags: , — montucky @ 11:20 am


This little Cottontail has been hanging out right next to the log deck lately. After I have cut all of the wood that I will need for this winter there will still be a lot of logs left. I will cover them to keep the snow off and that will create a wonderfully safe, dry shelter where he will most likely live all winter.

July 13, 2017

A small measure of cuteness on a hot summer day

Filed under: Animals, White-tail deer — Tags: — montucky @ 7:52 pm

Whitetail fawn

Every once in awhile every summer a whitetail doe brings her fawn (or fawns) into my side yard for some free babysitting. She will leave for several hours and then return for the little one. She must somehow understand that the baby will be safe here while she is gone and there is plenty of clover to eat and access to a good supply of fresh water (that I always keep for the birds).

March 26, 2016

Made it through the winter

Filed under: Animals, Bighorn sheep — Tags: , , — montucky @ 8:44 pm

Rocky Mountain Big Horn

Now to get some of that weight back!

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