Monday, July 19, 2010

Meet White Cloud. . .

More details later. . .
Dakota Miracle and Dakota Legend.

We are in Jamestown, North Dakota, at the Frontier Fort campground. Just down the road is the Frontier Town tourist trap. BUT, drive through the "town" and you can go to the National Buffalo Museum. They have a small herd of buffalo including THREE white buffalo. The oldest is White Cloud. She was born in 1996 elsewhere and given to the museum. Her fifth calf was a white buffalo. They did some testing on her and she is a true albino. She is almost blind, which is probably not a big deal to her, because buffalo do not have good eyesight. Her calf is Dakota Miracle and another brown cow buffalo in the herd gave birth to a white buffalo, Dakota Legend. No testing has been done to determine if they are true albinos. Some that are not true albino may actually grow in a darker coat as they get older.

We got up and out earlier than usual this morning because the white ones hide in the shade once the sun gets hot. So we were able to see them quite closely and get some great shots. I'm not sure why I am so in awe of these majestic animals. I guess it has to do with surviving an unholy slaughter that decimated the 30-60 million animals in the 1800's down to a couple hundred. Through the efforts of many, the species was saved and the total in North American now ranges about 400,000. I think that includes Canada.

The weather here in North and South Dakota has been super great since we have been here. The days are warm and we put on shorts. If we are out in the evening with Neal, we have to put on longer pants and a light jacket. Just about perfect. Haven't noticed mosquitos so I am quite happy about that.

To back up a little, we left Spearfish, South Dakota on Saturday and drove in the wind to Belfield, North Dakota. The drive was quite taxing because of the wind. It just would not quit. We spent the night right off the interstate at Trapper's Retreat in back in the campground. From there, we drove to Medora, North Dakota, and explored the southern part of the Theodore Roosevelt National Park. It actually is called the Badlands of North Dakota. It is similar to the Badlands in South Dakota, but yet different. There is more green and basins that look like cattle could graze. There are buffalo there, but we only saw a lone bull a couple times. There were lots of prairie dogs and Terry thinks they are really cute. They are fat and stay very close to their burrow. With the window down, you could hear them "bark" which is more of a chirp.

Sunday we drove on over to Jamestown, which is where we are camped next to the Frontier Town. Since today was my birthday, we went downtown to the Buffalo City Grill. It was a great dinner and they weren't very busy since we went early. We got great service from our waiter and spent some time chatting with him.

We are heading to Fargo tomorrow. We do not plan to stay there, but we are having a tire problem. We have one cupping on the outside and it is thumping. I noticed it a long time ago and it is steadily getting worse. Not sure what has caused it as this is a fairly new tire, having been changed in April 2009 when we did a front end alignment, etc. The other front tire is fine. Terry has called ahead and the tire center is expecting us. We do have a good spare, so that may be what we use. If they find anything else wrong, like a shock, or something, they can take care of it. Hopefully it won't delay our getting to the casino! Just may not have any money left to gamble with! Hah!

Till next time. . .


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