I asked my friend Anh (whom I just met on this trip, but had been in touch through email for several months) to write about her first mountain top experience. She was unable to get to the top when she visited in May.
Thanks Ahn for sharing with us your experience. It is always nice to hear about the horses through another set of eyes and another heart and to see other photos of the horses.
I found as I looked through her photos and posted them, that the photos continued to get better and better and it was apparent that Anh had fallen in love with them too.
Below is her story and photos from her trip. Thank you Anh for sharing your trip with us!
ps: We now know where Amethyst is: Back with Bolder again!
My Visit to the Mountain by Anh N.
Because of my love for the Pryor Mountain wild horses, my niece and I drove 1,200 miles from Los Angels to Montana. We took Crooked Creek up to the mountain top on September 1st. We got there around 4:00PM. We met Sandy and Amber. That was a great pleasure to meet them both.
We set up our tent near the Penn’s cabin. The sun started setting on the West, the Moon began rising on the East and the stars showed off their beauty. What a wonderful place!!!!
Around 9 PM, the sky quickly became covered with clouds and the wind was blowing harder and harder. We decided to sleep in the car. Then the rain started to pour quite hard. I was hoping the rain would last a little longer.
September 02, 2012
In the morning we met Sandy and her daughter Amber. We spent some time chatting and visited Lakota’s memorial. I could not avoid the sadness of losing him, but I know he is in heaven. Sandy and Amber left the mountain in the morning.
Late morning, Ginger, Lauren and I hiked down to the Tea Cup Bowl area to look for Cloud’s band. There was Gringo’s band, Tecumseh, other bands and some bachelors. Nearby, we ran into Bolder’s band, Cloud’s band, Duke’s band and Teton’s band. I took several pictures of them. We sat for a while watching the horses napping and waking up. They grazed as they moved to different areas. We left the bands and went back to our camp sites for lunch.
It was a beautiful day on the mountain top. I kept telling myself there is nowhere else that I’d rather be.
We went down to the water hole late afternoon. There were several bands that came down to drink. I was amazed that the 3 bachelors and a yearling (Knight) hanging out together.
Before the sun began to setting, we left the water pond. We were in the meadow above the water pond trying to take pictures of the horses passing by us, heading for the water pond. We saw Flint’s band and Baja’s bands running to the water hole then several other bands.
We rested early around 8:00pm. It was about 54 degrees. There was no wind. The sky was clear. I fell asleep and dreamed of the horses.
September 03, 2012:
I went down to the water pond at 7:15 AM and Ginger was already setting up her camera to film the birds, squirrels, and deer while waiting for the horses. Jackson’s band came down first. His 3 foals have grown since I saw them in May. It was so nice to see them again. Jackson looked great and handsome. Then several other bands came to drink.
Ginger and other campers left the mountain top that day. It was so quiet and peaceful when some people riding ATVs came by and parked the vehicles off the roads and on the grassy areas. It was a warm day on the mountain top.
Early afternoon I hiked to Tea Cup Bowl area to see Lakota memorial again. There were a few bands napping nearby. I got some great photos of them. Greta and her foal were posing for me and other horses. Then We went down to the water pond and waited for the horses. Teton’s band, Bolder’s band, Cloud’s band and other bands came down. Many horses played in the pond and dipped themselves in the water then they went up to the hill side and rolled themselves in the dirt. It was fun to watch
The sun started to set and it got cold. There were many horses passing by our camp site. I love to hear them galloping. We got ready to rest for the day. I wished for my angels (the horses) to rest peacefully, especially for the little babies to be warm and loved by their mothers and fathers. Good night my angels.
September 04, 2012
We went down to the water pond in the morning. It was cold and breezy. There were white clouds sailing in the blue sky. The sky was crystal blue and the air was fresh and filled with the strong aroma of pine trees. The birds were singing in the trees and bathing along the edge of the pond. I felt so peaceful inside and wished I never have to go back home. There was a wood pecker nearby being playful. He seemed to be enjoying himself pecking at the pine trees.
The reflection of the pine trees on the surface of the water pond was so beautiful and so peaceful. I thought this is heaven and I just wanted to be here forever.
I left the water pond and hung out with Cloud’s band on the meadow on the top of the water pond. I got some beautiful shots of Cloud and his family members, including playful Mica. It seemed Cloud didn’t mind that I was near by his band and watching them graze. I took lots of pictures of them. He looked at me then went back to his breakfast.
There was sound of the horses in the forest then 2 bachelors came out. Suddenly, Cloud ran as fast as he could to meet up with bachelors. The three horses ran into the forest. There were some loud noises. I was worried to death and feared that Cloud might fight with them and get injured then Cloud ran out from the forest and back to his family. I was relieved that Cloud was alright. It was incredibly amazing to witness the behavior of wild horses.
I left Cloud’s band and went back to our camp site to have lunch. My niece and I rested for a while. We drove to Burnt Timble Road to find horses but we did not see any.
Then we hiked for a short while in the tea cup bowl.
After lunch, we went back down to the water pond. There were several bands that came down to drink. My niece was sad for Tecumseh. He kept dogging Gringo’s band. Gringo took his band a while ago. He looked very sad. It seemed there some tears in his eyes. We were sitting by some trees so the horses could have their own space. Tecumseh was drinking and suddenly he was startled and walked past us going into the forest.
I can feel for his broken heart. I hope he will heal soon. Tecumseh, my best wishes for you!
The wind picked up this evening. The sun started to set and it got cold. There were many horses that passed by our camp site. I love to hear them galloping by. We got ready to rest for the day.
September 05, 2012
There was thick smoke hanging on the mountain top. We thought there may be a fire nearby. I prayed that I was wrong. I did not want any destruction to happen here on the Pryors. My niece and I thought that we should drive down the mountain to see what was going on.
Before leaving the mountain top we hung out with Doc’s band and I took many pictures of Doc. I love his mane and tail. It looks like someone had given him a perm. He is so handsome too.
We were on our way to Bridger but it took a longer time than expected because we took a wrong turn. I drove down to a ditch of a storm drain. I could not drive up or even back out. Luckily, 3 gentlemen who were driving by and helped us out of the ditch. They pushed my 4 WD Toyota 4Runner back ward then I drove parallel with the road and back to the dirt road. It was a blessing to get back on the road and got some help.
We got to Powell about 5:30PM. We washed up, rested and went to Cody to have some Japanese food. We bought some more batteries for my camera and a memory card for more photos!
September 06, 2012
We took Crooked Creek to the mountaintop in the morning. It was about 12:30 PM when we got back to our camp site. It was so excited to see many horses grazing near our tent. Bolder’s band and Teton’s band …Of course I took many as photos as possible. Killian was sleeping on the grass, Bolder napped in the pine trees with his family. Teton’s band was grazing near by. Phoenix seemed so shy. She never allowed me to take a good photo of her.
Early that evening many horses galloped by our camp site and down to the meadow below for shelter. There were storm clouds coming in but we only felt a few rain drops. It was 32 degrees. We stayed inside the car from 6:30 PM until 7:30AM the next day.
September 07, 2012
The sky was clear after the rain passed by quickly last night.
We went down to the water pond in the morning. It was cold and breezy. There were white clouds sailing in the blue sky. The sky was crystal blue and the air was fresh and filled with the strong aroma of pine trees. The birds were singing in the trees and bathing along the edge of the pond. I felt so peaceful inside and wished I never have to go back home. There was a wood pecker nearby being playful. He seemed to be enjoying himself pecking at the pine trees. The reflection of the pine trees on the surface of the water pond was so beautiful and so peaceful. I thought this is heaven and I just wanted to be here forever. There were not many horsed came down. It was a beautiful morning though.
We went back up and packed our equipment and we drove around. Jackson’s band was on the side of Burnt Timber road. Some of them were resting and some were napping. Baja’s band was grazing near by. Jackson seemed unhappy that Baja was close by. He walked over and had some words with Baja. Then he walked back to his band and napped again. I was glad to be able to take some great photos of them.
I left the mountain top and brought with me the wonderful memories and great experience of being on the Pryors, such a magical place. I hold dear the image of the horses. Their simple lives just melt my heart away. Pryor Mountain has captured my heart and my soul. There is no place else that I’d rather be.
We got to Britton Spring about 4:00 PM. I visited the horses in the pens that were up for adoption. I took several pictures. Sandy and Lori were there.
After having dinner with Sandy,we went back to Powell and rested.
September 08, 2012
I went to Britton Spring and spent some time with the horses. The bidding began at 10:00 AM. It was a good experience to see the process. I was glad Sandy and Lori got Kootenai, Kiowa, Liesl and Kaibab.
September 09. 2012
I took my niece to the Billings’s airport and she heading home first.
I drove to the Dry Head area in the late afternoon. I was greeted by 4 horses on the side of the gate: Seneca, Hightail, Jesse James and Hikco.
September 10, 2012
I stopped by Pryor Mountain Wild Mustang Center to visit Lorie and the horses. Liesl and Kaibab are adjusting well with their new home.
Then I drove through highway 37 to visit the Dry head horses.
Jemez and Joseph were hanging out on the hillside of the road. Jemez was up high on the cliff.
I met Susan from Texas and her daughter. Three of us hiked up the hill so we can take some pictures of Jemez.
We drove to the lower Skyes Ridge hoping to see Cecilia, her baby and Sitting Bull. Unfortunately, we could not find them but we saw Medicine Bow and Innaq. They quickly disappeared behind the sage bushes.
Susan and her daughter left the mountain to go back to Cody.
I drove back up the Dry Head areas. Jemez and Joseph were still at the same location. I also saw Hidatsa and Fool Crow’s band.
September 11, 2012
Late morning, I drove back to Dry Head areas there were Medicine Bowl, Jemez and Joseph were on the hill side grazing. I hiked up and down the hills to spend some time with them and took several pictures of them.
In the afternoon Medicine Bow, Jemez and the black stallion moved the hill side on the other side of the road. They were standing still and napping.
September 12, 2012
I drove to Cody and visited the McCullough Peaks wild horses. It was a special day because I saw a band of three with a newborn who was only one day old (he was born on September 11, 2012)
I drove back to the Dry Head areas in the afternoon. There were no horses during the 1st round. I drove back again then I saw Blizzards and Cascade, they were grazing in the little valley. The pictures I took of them were not that great because they would not let me get too close. Blizzards has a very long mane. I wish I would have been able to take good poses of him.
I left Pryor Mountain hoping to be back soon. I left my heart in the Pryor Mountains.
Some of Anh’s beautiful photos from her trip!