Thursday, July 22, 2021

Pumpkin Buttes

One of the perks of being a missionary priest in God's Country is seeing new terrain. The Pumpkin Buttes are on many peoples' bucket list. But being on private ground, they are not easy to get to. Good thing I have friends in high places. Trent and Kahla Mills have the lease on the North Butte this year, so we saddled up for one of the coolest cattle drives I’ve been on. 

The North Butte is one of four major buttes that make up the Pumpkin Buttes in Campbell County. A geological oddity, they rise out of nowhere like islands on a sea of prairie. They are called Pumpkin because at the foot of the North Butte lie hundreds of round orange colored rocks that resemble pumpkins.  History tells us that they were used by the US military, outlaws, and no doubt they were sacred grounds to the Native Americans.

The day started before sun-up to beat the heat. Loading up the 22 pairs, we trucked them about 10 miles to the north foot of the buttes.

This was pretty much new territory for all involved. So Kahla pointed out the gun site on the horizon that we were going to drive the cattle through. I'm always up for a challenge.

Surprisingly to me, there are quite a few springs coming off the rim of the Butte. Here the cattle will come down to water and back up to graze. The Mills have a camera set up so they can keep an eye on things. 

Now the final stretch. For not being here before, the cattle sure pushed nice.

Sure enough, right through that gun site.

There she be. The top of North Butte. Flat as a pancake and as lush as Hawaii. 

Big bucks and elk even roam these parts. In the center of the pic is part of about 70 head of elk we kicked up.

Another well job done.

That was cool. And Mollie loved it too. What a vast garden our Lord has given us to explore. I'm super thankful for the opportunity to get a bird's eye view of this land that I call home. In the end, all we can really do is just that, give thanks.

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