Pronghorn Antelope, Finally

After spending the day searching Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge looking for antelope only to be told that they had left when the cattle had been removed from the range, I was pretty frustrated because I’d added two days and 300+ miles to the trip in order to see Pronghorn Antelope. When I talked to a rancher, he said there were lots of antelope on private ranches, that they were attracted to the high quality feed.

Needless to say, I was elated when I saw a small herd of antelope just as I reached the top of Hart Mountain. The first group I saw contained only females,

female Pronghorn Antelope

and they bolted as soon as soon as I slowed the car,

Antelope Running

but I would have been satisfied if I hadn’t gotten another shot because they were by far the best pictures I’ve gotten of antelope.

As often turns out, though, once I’d gotten a few good shots more opportunities arose to get even better shots. Right after I left the ranger station and started to leave the park I noticed a pair of bucks standing just off the road, and they seemed more than willing to pose for a shot or two.

Male Pronghorn Antelope

Things just got better because a little further down the road I ran into a larger group that were crossing the road right in front of me. I actually had to stop for these three who were so close I couldn’t fit them in the frame.

Antelope Crossing Road

This might be as close as I’ll ever get to an African Safari. And, right on cue, just as they crossed the road, they broke into a trot:

Antelope Running

It’s not too often that a trip has an actual climax like this, but this was one of those outings that almost seemed to follow the script for a great trip.

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