Today the plan was to visit the homestead, our beloved 80 acre parcel of prairie in Buffalo, South Dakota. Again we woke up to dark skies and wondered if this was the day.. It cleared up though, as it always does, and we brought our friend Jacques out to our property, he was curious to see what we talk of every year. We walked the perimeter this year, one half mile back from the road and one quarter mile east to west.
The above photo was taken at our northern property line, perched on my camera bag. Another hot and windy day, we walked our property with the GPS and kept an eye out for critters. In recent years, one of our trips was cut short upon finding a very large bull, that stood up once he saw us. We very calmly put it in reverse and made our way back to our bikes without ruffling his feathers. That’s the agreement we have, the owner still has use of the land until we’re there for good. So it’s not unusual to find horses or other animals roaming our land. We found five of the following circles, and I’m sure dozens more exist. Any ideas as to what made this?
We traipsed our way across the dry grasses and lavender bushes, up and down the hilly terrain until we found the seasonal creek with it s dry, cracked riverbed. We crossed, and just as Bill said how soft it was, I sank halfway to my knees.
Ick. Stinky, black mud covered my boots and pantlegs and I tried to drag them across grass to no avail. Luckily the Sinclair gas station in Buffalo (population 380) would have a faucet under which I’d douse myself from the knee down. We made our way back to the road, and came upon the remains of what I believe was a wolf. I only know this because about 20 ft. from where we found it, our neighbor had a wolf carcass hanging from his gate last year.
12 miles north is the town of Buffalo, and I rinsed off my black mud caked boots at a faucet outside the gas station. I relaxed barefoot outside with a Gatorade, for a while, flipping my socks in the sun like strips of bacon, hoping to dry them, and watching the traffic on 85. After a while, we headed into town for a bite at the No. 3 Saloon. To my surprise they offered wi-fi, and I checked in on Foursquare at the LAST place I’ve ever dreamed: Buffalo, South Dakota, population 380.
Our day ended with a hot, windy ride 70 miles back down 85, and relaxed by a campfire, which I was surprised we could have. The campground owners told us keep it small, and for the love of Christ, make sure it’s out when you turn in for the night. The sun had set on another awesome day.