Tuesday, February 28, 2012

A Sunday drive

We posted about our typical Sunday activity - hiking - a couple months ago.  Well, this Sunday we opted for a drive instead of a hike.  We thought it might be a good idea to visit our baby goats once before bringing them here.  As we said before, we are excited about the goats, but don't really know much about how to care for them.  
So, we went to early Mass, stopped at a favorite breakfast restaurant, loaded up on eggs, bacon, french toast, pancakes, and coffee and hit the road.
Our drive took us through an amazing 14 mile long canyon.  We all love this particular canyon, but had not been through it in the winter before.  There wasn't much snow, but it was very pretty.
Mark and I find the scenery gorgeous, but the best part for the girls is the 3 tunnels carved out of rock that we drive through.  There are also train tracks that run the length of the canyon on the opposite side of the river - and on this trip there was a train on the tracks, so we got to "race" the train through the canyon.
On the far end of the canyon, we stopped in a little town to stretch our legs and visit this really cool mineral hot springs fountain.  We're not big fans of hot springs in general.  If only the water could be hot without being smelly.  If you've visited hot springs, you know what I mean.  The main spring here flows 18,600,000 gallons every 24 hours at a temperature of 135 degrees Fahrenheit.  There were plenty of people in the pools, so some people can obviously get past the smell.  
So, back to the fountain... It was erected around 1907 when a hot water distribution line was being laid in the park.  The rangers noticed that there was heavy backpressure in the pipes. Consequently, a standpipe was built in a gulch and the park superintendent had a rock base built to support it.  As the hot mineral water exits the top and flows over, it cools and deposits travertine. The algae within the water colors the deposits.  
We couldn't get a picture of the water coming out of the top, but can you see the steam?
Now, I'm sure you're still marveling over the hot springs fountain, but wait - it gets better.  What did we happen upon next on our Sunday drive?  Buffalo!  OK, well, American Bison, to be perfectly correct.  Or you might even say "Tatonka" if you are a Dances with Wolves fan.
Forgive the picture: Mark just snapped it out the car window with his phone.  It was really neat though - there was a group of 5 just hanging out - there was even a baby with them, but he/she was behind some sage brush and didn't want to be photographed.  If you've never seen one of these dudes in person, you should.  They are H.U.G.E.  The heads, especially, are enormous.  We know people who keep a herd, so we've been up close and personal before (and bison is our favorite red meat), but it was great to see some "in the wild."

Next stop on our Sunday drive:  McDonald's.  For Shamrock shakes (sorry - no photo.)

And finally, the goat farm!  It's terrible, the goat farm was really the point of this whole adventure, but we took a whopping 1 photo while there.  
We were talking with the goat farmers and getting all our food, water, and fencing questions answered - and forgot about pictures.  But the good news is that the goats are friendly and let the girls pet and handle them without incident. We got confirmation that our goat shed will be a great home for them right from the start, and we don't have major fencing projects that will need to be finished within the next couple weeks.  It was also nice to see the mothers of our goats - to see that they have nice temperaments and that they really are "dwarf" goats.  

Oh, and one other update in the form of a photo...
beautiful eggs, courtesy of the hens at Aspen Springs
Our hens are crazy laying machines!  We're getting roughly a dozen eggs per day and the assortment of colors is so pretty.  Some of the eggs are still a little on the small side, but for the most part, the hens are laying full-size eggs these days.  At breakfast, the girls request their eggs by color :)


  1. All of your photos are gorgeous! The pic of the bison looks like a painting!
    But, oh my goodness. Those baby goats are SO CUTE!!!!!
    And, lovely eggs as well. You're like Martha Stewart. hehe

  2. I agree with Andrea - you've got hens laying eggs, and you're going to get goats - good for you!
    (your visits caused to me come over here and actually poke around - this is interesting)