So Uncomfortable, But So Worth It

On April 25, 2008, in Uncategorized, by Meghan

I was dead set on riding my bike outside today. Mother Nature plotted against me, though, with several inches of new snow last night (and the night before, and the night before that). So, I waited until the warmest part of the day, when I knew the roads should be melted. Wet, yes, snowy, hopefully not. I won’t elaborate on which body parts became wet and frozen and in which order. Suffice it to say, it was cold, wet, and uncomfortable.

On this out-and-back ride, I ran into a herd of bison with 3 newborn calves, and they made every moment of the ride worth it. I never bring a camera when I’m biking, but I brought one today because I was told that there was a winter kill carcass that was being fed on by a bear up the road a few miles (I did see the carcass, but no bear.). I put my camera to good use with the bison calves, taking 51 photos total. I’ve posted the 5 best ones below (I know, they’re not very good. I was shivering badly and my hands were really cold.). Enjoy!

There were 6 females and 3 calves in this tiny herd. Bison calves are born red, and they will stay that color all summer long. Experts say that the calves are born able to stand, and they can run within 3 hours of birth.

Bison cows are fiercely protective of their calves. This bison cow was not happy about me and the truck I was next to being there.

She came close to the truck and gruffed and huffed a bit, her calf following along. I hid on the other side of the truck until she calmed down. After a minute or so, she turned around and finished crossing the road.

If you click on this image, you can see the remnants of the calf’s umbilical cord hanging down. Clearly, the calf is only a day or two old.

I was fortunate to run into the herd again, on my way back home, and I snapped this picture and more. None of these photos really turned out because I was truly frozen at this point. But, I chose this photo because it shows how gangly and awkward the young calf is.


9 Responses to “So Uncomfortable, But So Worth It”

  1. Bob Gentile says:

    calves are born able to stand, and they can run within 3 hours of birth.
    Geesh, I hope a crazy ULTRA Running Couple getting ready to have a baby don’t read this–lol

    That is some serious stuff running after 3 hours 🙂

    I was looking at the temps in ur area—whew!! I don’t know how you train out in that cold chitttttt –Burrrrrrrrr

    Great photos….Thanks

  2. JeffO says:

    Wow! Those photos are so cool!!! You’re so lucky to live in Yellowstone.

  3. Alisha says:

    is Yellowstone on the way from San Diego to Boston? Can it be? I’m making a road trip at the end of the summer, and I was already planning on hitting up Idaho and Minnesota… I suppose I could just look it up on a map.

  4. Danni says:

    So cute!!!!!

  5. SteveQ says:

    I just read your race report for Chippewa – and it’s my fave. So, your last few posts are wild Bison, wild Turkeys and wild Wisconsinites… what’s next?

  6. sea legs girl says:

    I loved the pictures and the information about how young the calves must have been. How jealous am I that you got to see that!?!
    Let me assure you you’re not alone in the cold and snow; the weather is much the same here.

  7. Meghan says:

    Hi y’all!

    Bob- Hah, that’s funny about the ultrarunners not getting any funny ideas from the bison!

    JeffO- Thanks! I feel really lucky!

    Alisha- Yes, yes, and you should come for a visit! We’ll trail run! If you’re going from MN to ID, you will drive right through Yellowstone anyways!

    Danni- Thanks!

    Steve- I have a bunch of bird photos to post when I have the chance. Look for hawk adventures, next! So, was that you I ran with at Chippewa Moraine, then?

    Sea Legs- Oh I’m so sorry you’re suffering there as well! Let spring get here, already!

  8. Beth says:

    I love the pictures Meghan!! Those little babies don’t look like bison at all when they are born?! Wierd! Regardless – you are truly hardcore for riding outside in that kind of weather. Oh my…I’m getting chilled just thinking about it! Have a great day!

  9. WynnMan says:

    Looks like you still have snow! Yikes!

    Nice images, sometimes you get lucky like that. Last year I had my camera and spotted a 2 week old fawn white tail right next to shore where I was icing. Then there was a time I was fishing browns on one of out Grade A trout streams and for some reason that day it was a coming out party for toads. There were toads everywhere, on shore, in the water floating and romping each other. It was like “Toads Gone Wild- Cancun”.

    Mom’s homemade au natural chili is definitely great post race fuel when I can get my hands on it. Everything is from their garden.

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