I live in the bunkhouse, on a street with two more houses. I'm very safe because our Law Enforcement Officer lives next door and our Assistant Project Manager lives in the second house down. A third house is on the intersecting road and the barn and maintenance area is beyond that house. The Visitor Center is up and over the hill so our area is not visible from the main road.
Last Tuesday, I was in a hurry and decided to go up and over the hill. There is a little canal that runs behind our house and off the refuge and is used for irrigation in the area. Behind the next house over is a little footbridge to cross it. Here are pictures I saw along the short, but steep route.
|This is the little canal behind my house where I start my walk|
|I walk past a Macintosh apple tree and this lilac bush|
|Through a gap in the vegetation behind the houses, I can see the house and barn on a cross street|
|This is the long view from just before the bridge, over the roof of the 2nd house from me|
|In fifty yards or so, I reach the foot bridge|
|Then it's time to start my climb|
|I think I'll make it to the top when I see mountains behind this hill|
|Soon I can see part of the auto tour area|
|And to the right, our visitor center which is nestled into the next hill.|
I'm editing this blog on Tuesday night. I'm just back from my 2nd day of getting to close the Auto Tour route. Yesterday, I took another volunteer, Kyle, with me. We have to close the lower gate to the auto tour, go around the tour to push anyone out that is staying too long. Then, after 9:30 P.M., when the front gate closes, we have to reopen the interior gate to the Auto Tour, so people can start enjoying it at 6:30 A.M. Of course, we can do this as slowly as we want and we get to look for the bison, antelope, mule deer, white-tailed deer, and elk, coyotes, and black bear. Yesterday we have great views of close by bison, as well as some beautiful clouds over the Mission Mountains range. Tonight we had several storms earlier, but it cleared up and I saw my first bear. AND he was climbing a hill that was completely empty except for one tree. It would have been a tremendous picture, IF my battery had been charged. Either I mixed up the batteries or the camera somehow got turned on.
Our final volunteer, Kyle, arrived Sunday to join me and the other volunteer, Will. Both are young guys from Florida who work for a group that contracts out young people to various agencies. The fourth housemate is law officer in training. He will only be here a few more days. But I'm enjoying working with the guys. And they have to act like they enjoy me since I have the only car.
|Bison among the arrowleaf balsomroot blooms|
|Sunset light on clouds over Mission Mountains|