It was blazing HOT! I made a visit to 'The Wild Animal Sanctuary' in Keenesbury, Colorado a few days ago (Note: This white fence is not the fence for the wildlife btw:). Just like 'The Wizard Of Oz' there were lions and tigers and bears! Oh my! :) And camels and horses and wolves and panthers (which are actually leopards go figure!) and Lynxes and African porcupines and foxes and other creatures I am certain I've missed...OH and we must not forget the bunnies who seemed to dart in and out of the large animal enclosures seemingly just to taunt them...I suspect they were really after scraps of food? Not sure...It was rather comical to spot the bunnies at random moments throughout! I hope to return with a) a tripod and b) a zoom lens (I kept my kit simple this maiden voyage to allow for the 'unexpected' in a new venture).
More photos to come on that note...I've never been to a sanctuary in the United States. Once upon a time I trained and was certified to lead safaris in S. Africa. This place (although so much more controlled and much, much smaller in scale) reminded me (as I work inside a concrete building beneath these hideous florescent lights) of how much I love trekking about the wild, spotting animals and taking photos! I was quite impressed as you walk above the animals along a concrete walkway high above which stretches nearly a mile in length!
I typically become a tad depressed at zoos with their cages and barriers...the sadness their animals wear like a mantle yearning for their true homeland to wander free...Well, I suppose this is a fair second to an untouched wilderness...These animals at least have some room to wander...It would be nice if they could be re-introduced into their natural habitats but they may lack many necessary survival skills (one of the recscued bears was fed from cub-hood entirely a diet of McDonald's hamburgers, apparently!) I imagine a cool bath during a scorcher of a day is just as welcome whether it's in a large tub or a mountain stream? More details on their setup here...
Photography becomes much more alive and interesting without the wires and cages in the way! I felt perfectly safe but did place my camera strap around my neck (something I rarely do) to avoid losing my camera to a tiger or Grizzly bear! (you drop it some 35 feet or so, sadly, it's gone;).
Bob Barker (yes, 'The Price Is Right' indeed) had his hand in creating this and rescuing some of these large animals.
What a FUN and delightful day! WHOO HOOO! :) This sunset, the proper ending to one amazing adventure arrived as a feast for the senses just a I was departing the sanctuary! I sat and lingered quite awhile at the gate (I think I was one of the last to depart) watching the sun sink and the colors shift and shimmer... sigh!
Say hallo in the the comments (I love comments!) and visit again soon for photos of the animals! :)