Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Yaks and Bison and Bears - Oh my!

On Saturday I was sitting at a blackjack table in this little casino where everyone knows everyone, kind of like on Cheers. One woman at the table said she was going to head out but that she didn't have anything to do and was bored. A guy at the table said "Why don't you go to the game farm?" The woman said "I just washed my car; I don't want the buffalo slobbering all over it." My head snaped up from my chips "There's a place where buffalo slobber on your car?" The woman said yes and told me a little bit more about it. The guy recommended that we bring a loaf of bread to feed the buffalo. I assumed that he was trying to set me up to get trampled by bison. (People call them buffalo, but they are really bison.) I grabbed my drink and chips and asked the security guard at the door if he knew anything about a game farm. He told me that there was a brochure in the lobby. I called and they were closed but said that they would be open the next day.

On Sunday DK and I went to the Olympic Game Farm in Sequim. We brought a loaf of bread with us just incase it was safe to feed the animals. As we pulled up to the gate, we notice two signs. "Do not feed the animals" and "Bread $2 per loaf". WTF? So can we feed them or not? (I am working on a post about stupid signs. Keep an eye out for that one.) We find out that we can feed the animals but not the caged animals. Would it really be that hard to add the word "caged" to the first sign to clarify it? The teenager at the entrance makes us sign a waiver form that probably said all the routine shit like we can't sue them, we could be killed or maimed by bison, our car may get chewed on by elk, etc.

First we drove past a bunch of peacocks, then past the prairie dogs. The prairie dogs were cute and enjoyed the bread that we threw to them. We were at the top of a hill looking down at a bunch of yaks lumbering around cars that had stopped on the trail. The yaks were sticking their heads into the car windows and people were feeding them by hand! We drove down the hill to the yaks and they came up to our windows and slobbered all over because even though they look dumb, they know one thing for certain: CARS = FOOD! A bunch of yaks stuck their heads into the car in front of us and the people in the car were laughing hysterically. We could see that most of the back window was packed with various bread products like dinner rolls, hamburger and hotdog buns, etc. One of the yaks pulled his head out of the window and he had dinner rolls stuck on his horns! Freaking hilarious! We fed some of the yaks and continued on.


We passed by a giant rhino that was in a pen and an ostrich. Then we entered an area that had a sign that said something like: do not stop, keep moving, stay in car. Everyone else was stopped with their windows down feeding the elk and bison. We drove over the cattle gate and all of a sudden these huge elk were on each side of the car. They must have been about 7 feet tall! We rolled down our windows a crack and each stuck a slice of bread out. The elk ate the bread, stuck their tongues in the windows and chewed on the door frame! (Good thing we are driving the Pathfinder instead of Bumble or Kit!)


We drove on towards the bison. The bison were freaking humongous! They are the heaviest land animal in North America and easily the height and length of the Pathfinder! They moved towards us really slowly and just kind of looked at us. They were waiting for some bread! So we fed them through the tiny opening in the window. Then we got more creative and stuck slices of bread to the top of the side-view mirrors for them to nibble on. They were slobbering everywhere! It was awesome! There was a baby bison and I fed it right out of my hand and it licked me!


Next we approached the bear area. I wasn't sure that it was smart to roll down our windows here. The bears were behind very small, weak wire fences that were only about 3 feet high. I noticed that the fence was electrified but was that really going to stop them? The people in the car in front of us (the stoney kids that put the dinner rolls on the yak) were throwing bread out the window to a bear that was sitting just inside the fence. The bear would sometimes catch the bread in his mouth but most of the time he picked it up with his giant bear claws and ate it. All of a sudden the bear waved. No joke – he waved like a person. The kids threw another slice and he waved again! This was a trained bear! We drove to another bear area and this bear was sitting on the ground holding his toes. I suspect this was another trick, not as cool as the waving, but pretty cute so we gave him some bread too.


The Olympic Game Farm was awesome and I would totally do it again!


Related posts:
Bear Video - 3/30/06
Weekend Vacation - 3/27/06

1 comment:

Nuclear Toast said...

The rare bread-horned yaks are awesome. And who wouldn't love a car covered in ruminant slobber?

Oh yeah, me.