October 10, 2010

Guns and Cockleburs

Yesterday was the first day of the general elk hunt, so we stayed out of the mountains and opted to ride in the Ouray National Wildlife Refuge.  To our surprise, we heard guns there, too.  Apparently, it's some kind of waterfowl season.  Is it just me, or does a wildlife refuge hunt seem like an oxymoron? 
We began by climbing high on a ridge overlooking the Green River and its riparian corridor. 
When we reached the highest part of the ridge, we started down, following an old, eroded roadbed through desolate cliffs to reach the river:
The river supports rich vegetation: 
Trails near the river are shaded by cottonwoods, now turned gold: 
We saw Canada geese:
and a flock of sandhill cranes:
The one downside was accidentally travelling through a morass of these:
The horses' tails collected hundreds of them.  Oh, well, their tails needed brushing anyway.  No harm done.  Next time we'll avoid the burrs.


  1. More pretty countryside but I don't understand hunting and refuge.

  2. I repeat my suggestion to include all these beautiful pictures in a book or at least in an album. I will be the first to buy it!

  3. Great post. At Camas NWR we have 200 whitetail deer that eat most of the spring feed for migrating waterfowl. They are now deciding what to do with them. A hunting season is a possibility.

  4. Beautiful ride, Janie..... AND--I guess we all thought that a refuge was a protected area for wildlife..... ?????

    The colors are so pretty... I love seeing the Cottonwoods in their blazing color. Gorgeous!!!!

    The river is so pretty --and seeing the geese and cranes are fabulous... Sorry about the burrs though.

    Sounds like you had a wonderful day.

  5. I agree with you about a wildlife refuge hunt being an oxymoron. There is a wildlife area near our community, but since it is not a refuge limited hunting is permitted.
    It's too bad about the cockleburrs, but you certainly saw some beautiful scenery.

  6. Hi Janie, another beautiful ride! Your first shot..."I can see for miles and miles". Also love the third shot, the rocky terrain has a beauty all its own. Some of this looks like CO. Hate those burs...

  7. Definitely an oxymoron. Love those sandhills and wonder if they shoot them?

  8. This was a spectacular ride, Janie. Be careful while the hunters are about. Do the horses like their tails brushed? I'm thinking Ouch!

  9. so glad yall avoided the hunters...oh poor horses...and poor yall having to brush them out...

  10. Those are monster burrs!!!
    Hunting and refuge, makes no sense to me either.
    Beautiful views though!!!

  11. Don't get the hunting in a refuge either. We were in the foothills of the Shenandoah's at this time about four years' back, and we heard guns going off several times over the weekend. One day we even saw a deer run across a road and the next thing we knew a truck stopped suddenly, a hunter jumped out and went chasing after it. All I could say was, run deer, run!

  12. You always have the best pictures on your blog. So pretty.

  13. I do love the colours of fall. Beautiful pictures.

  14. Yep Janie, a wildlife refuge hunt sounds cock-eyed to me too. What a beautiful ride you took me on Thanks. This is my last visit from North Africa (sadly) I'll be back online in South Africa in two days' time and blogging again. Blessings from Jo.

  15. Talk about "sitting ducks"!
    As usual the most amazing photos--I expect to see the sherrif and a posse appearing over the nearest ridge AND the sound of gunfire (from their colts)---I must have watched too many Westerns in my youth!

  16. our hounds used to come home from the hunt with their coats full of the burrs and we'd have to pick them out--lovely ride today.

  17. G'day Janie ~ I so look forward to each travel you share with us ... the country side is breathtakingly beautiful.

    Have a great eve ~
    TTFN ~ Hugs, Marydon

  18. A beautiful place for a ride or a hike. Those sandhill cranes will soon be headed my way. They like to winter in the rice fields of the Sacramento Valley There must be a lot of rice that avoids harvest by the farmers only to be harvested by the cranes.

  19. Yeah, here in Oklahoma the waterfowl hunters head for the "refuges" to go hunting. Truth in advertising?

    Great pic of the trail through the Fall color.



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