Posts Tagged With: Bad River Road

Prairie Silhouettes – Stanley County, SD

Cows are anything but sexy, so thinking of them as a good photography model or subject would probably be considered a bit odd.  I must say, my opinion of cows is probably less romantic than the average person.  After spending six years of my youth working on a large scale dairy farm, I’ve lost nearly all interest in spending my free time around these big and smelly animals.  I have no illusion of how “cute” baby calves are and how much “fun” it would be to feed and take care of them.  Spoiler alert: when you have over one hundred calves to feed twice daily, seven days a week, the “fun” runs out in a hurry!

Despite my current lack of interest in bovine, cows are not difficult to spot on the great plains and a lot of areas in the American West.  After all, much of the landscape has been modified by man in order to raise cattle.  Indeed, they are an important food resource and without them the world would be a less tasty place!  Can you imagine the world without ribeye steak or a good beef roast with mashed potatoes and gravy?!?

This weekend I went for a drive down the Bad River Road outside Pierre, South Dakota.  After driving around for an hour or so, I was confronted with a beautifully colored sunset but the majority of the landscape was still nothing but short, brown, and wholly uninspiring grass, I turned my attention to these large four legged residents of  the expansive ranch land and said to a herd of cows, “You will be my models tonight!”  Well, cows are not sexy, but it turns out they can still look good in a picture!

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Categories: Nature, Wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Prairie Morning – Along the Bad River Road, South Dakota

Over Football’s Super Bowl weekend, I visited my parents in my hometown of Pierre, South Dakota.  On that bitterly cold Sunday morning, I took a drive down the Bad River Road outside Fort Pierre to see what I could see.  What I saw was a disappointing lack of snow in the area.  I’ve been down the Bad River Road in the fall when the prairie has gone dormant and turned brown, so I was really hoping to get some prairie shots with snow!

Even though I was bummed at the lack of snow, I quickly took notice of the hundreds of deer that were calling this area home for the winter.  I rarely seek out wildlife photos, but with literally hundreds of deer running about, I turned my mood around and kept my camera at the ready.

20140202-Whatcha Lookin' At- - w

I thought the deer in the above shot was thinking, “Whatcha looking at?”  I was able to only get off a few hand held shots from my truck before he turned tail and ran off, taking his friends with him.  Can you spot this buck’s friends?

20140202-Lonely Life on the Prairie - w

I saw this lonely, isolated tree close to the road when it was still really dark out.  As the morning twilight gave the sky interesting color, I still didn’t have a composition I was excited about, so I drove like a mad man back to this tree and took its picture.   The few trees that do live out on the prairie do not have a lot of company and this one is definitely living “The Lonely Life.”

20140202-Winter Prairie Grass - w

Once twilight waned and the sun began to rise, I headed to a small creek bottom that I thought would make interesting leading lines in an image.  I took a few shots of the image I originally had in mind, but was feeling uninspired.  But once the sun broke the horizon, it lit up the long grass near the creek, and with the frost beginning to melt off the grass, made it appear to glow.  I crouched down really close to the ground and positioned my camera just a few inches away from an area of grass that was untrammeled and blasted off this image;  it turned out to be my favorite image of the trip.

Categories: Nature, Wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

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