I have decided to veer slightly off the direct subject of the Pryor Mountain Wild Horses. But not too far, as the Crow Indians are very much a part of the horses and have played an important role on who these horses are today.
I took this next few paragraphs directly form the Crow-Appaalooke website. You can click CROW to go directly there.
“The homeland of the Apsáalooke have three major mountain ranges: Iisiaxpúatachee Isawaxaawúua (Big Horn Mountains), Cheétiish (Wolf Teeth Mountains) and Baáhpuuo (Pryor Mountains); rich rolling hills, plains, grasslands, badlands water and wetlands. The Iisiaxpúatahcheeaashisee Aliakáate (Little Big Horn River)— (Big Horn River) and Bilippítshuhke (Reno Creek) flow through the reservation and create wooded valleys with abundant fish and wildlife. The Crow high country has elk, deer and buffalo herds in some Montana’s richest alpine range land. The tribal members reside in six major towns and in the countryside across the 3,000 square miles of Crow Country (a territory bigger than Rhode Island yet smaller than Connecticut). One of the nation’s richest deposits of strippable low sulfur coal lies along the eastern sector of the reservation. One active coal mine, the Sarpy Coal Mine, and several oil and gas fields yield important resources to the Crow Tribal Government. In 2002 a new constitution was adopted by the Crow Tribe which includes a judicial, legislative and executive branch.
In Indian Country the Apsáalooke/Crow People are renowned for their cultural vitality, particularly for the mid-August Chichaxxaasuua, the Crow Fair. This event is often called the largest family reunion in the world. Over 10,000 Crow people live in the encampment of over 1,700 teepees and 1,200 tents. Crow families move their households including horses to camp. The Tepee Capital of the World features a morning parade of the Apsáalooke/Crow People and their horses in full regalia, cars and flat bed trucks bedecked with beadwork and attire, an afternoon all Indian rodeo and race meet and an evening intertribal powwow. On the banks of the Little Big Horn River the fairgrounds is rich in historic context, for the Little Bighorn Battlefield is only two miles to the south, and a short distance from the Big Horn and Yellowstone Rivers and the Bozeman Trail.
The nineteenth century Apsáalooke chief, Eelapúash stated, “The Crow Country is good country. The Great Spirit has put it exactly in the right place, while you are in it you fare well; whenever you go out of it; whichever way you travel you fare worse.” (Chief Eelapúash, circa 1830)
Chief Plenty Coups was the last chief to gain that status in the traditional Crow manner. He lived until 1932, leaving his land and home as a park for all people.
The climate on the reservation varies from humid above 7,000 feet in the Bighorn Mountains, with 24 inches of annual precipitation, to semi-arid around 2,900 feet near Hardin, with 12 inches of annual precipitation. Vegetation varies from conifer forests to grasslands. Approximately 75% of the precipitation falls from March through July. The frost-free period (growing season) ranges from 115 days at Busby, 123 days at Hardin, 126 days at Wyola, to 135 days at Crow Agency. The last spring frost occurs as late as May 24 and frost may occur as early as September 16th.
This portion of Montana enjoys “Indian Summers” which frequently extend into November. This is a time of warm sunny days and cool evenings. The mean annual temperature is 45.5 degrees Fahrenheit (F) with a summer high of 110 and a winter low of –48 degrees F.”
So in one my many trips in 2012, I brought back a couple rescues from the Crow Indian Reservation. My daughter and I both adopted a dog. It was by chance that I found this rescue group. Rez Dog Rescue. My daughter Amber was looking for a dog to adopt. She had been looking for a while and through our online searches we found them. After goggling the founder of the rescue in hopes to learn more, I found this article from last October. You can click on SHERI to read it.
From that article I learned about the incredible need for homes for strays on the reservation. Amber and I decided that is where she should adopt. As we looked through the list of dogs up for adoption, Bill and I also decided that we had room for one more dog in our family.
I coordinated the six-hour ride home with two dogs (one a puppy, 6 weeks old, the other 1-year-old) with my trip to the Pryors in October. They both were excellent car riders and I appreciated the company.
Sheri and her friend Bernie work hard at finding homes for these dogs. In fact, it goes way beyond that. Sheri spends thousands of dollars out of her own pocket to help with medical expenses on these dogs. Many come to her sick and in need of medical attention. Where others may decided to euthanize a dog or puppy, Sheri gives them a much longer chance. She gives the dogs and puppies she rescues a chance for a happy life, no matter how long or short that will be.
She is many times faced with tough decisions that I am not sure how she makes. I also want to add that Sheri has a full time job and then comes home to a house full of puppies and dogs to care for. Yes, many are fostered in her own house waiting for their forever home.
I am not sure why the situation on the Reservation is the way it is. But like many places right here in the US and in my home state of Montana, there are many animals in need.
And so this leads me to this post.
The website: Animal Rescue is having their challenge right now. The State winner gets 1,000 dollars. It is really easy. All you need to do is go to their site and vote. Everyday please. Click on VOTE to go to the site. The first time you are there you will need to enter REZ DOG RESCUE under the shelter name and then type in Hardin, MT for the city and state. Rez Dog will come up and then you can click “vote”. The next day when you go to this site, Rez Dog will show up and all you have to do is press vote. Simple. Thank you so much! A 1,000 dollars is just a drop in the bucket for this rescue, but they appreciate all the drops they can get!
So now I have 5 Pryor Rescues in my family. Three Mustangs and two Dogs and I have to say, they are the best animals in the world!