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Fitness and Photography for Fun - A blog on staying fit by hiking and doing photography by David Mendosa

Away from Wray‏

April 22nd, 2011 · 2 Comments

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When my friend Sharon and I drove away from Wray to return home in Boulder on Sunday, our main interest was Bonny Lake, the only state park anywhere near our route. About 35 miles straight south of Wray, Bonny Lake is nestled in the broad valley of the South Fork of the Republican River. I had to check to be sure, but in this case “Republican” is not a political term. The river takes its name from a branch of the Pawnee Indians known as “the Republicans.”

Bonny Lake is a large reservoir far from any other major source of water. We drove all around it on major and minor roads. On one side road we hit paydirt with both a Wild Turkey and a Great Horned Owl.

We Found a Wild Turkey at Lunch Time

We Found a Wild Turkey at Lunch Time

Click on the picture above to enlarge
A Great Horned Owl

A Great Horned Owl

Click on the picture above to enlarge

Actually, we disturbed the sleep of both of those big birds when we drove down a little-used road. They were not expecting us.

After crossing over the Republican dam, we proceeded downstream to Hale Ponds in the South Republican Management Area, which abuts the Colorado-Kansas border. By mistake we drove into Kansas.

“We’re not in Colorado any more, Sharon,” I said, as we turned around and got out of Kansas as fast as we could. The weather threatened and we didn’t want to experience any tornados for which that state in famous. This was the first time that I’ve been back to Kansas since I suffered through the U.S. Army’s Basic Training at Fort Riley in the winter of 1956.

Coming back to our home state, we completed the circuit of Bonny Lake where we heard many Western Meadowlarks. Connecting a small but powerful speaker to my iPod Touch playing iBird Pro, we successfully called one or two of these birds closer. The Western Meadowlark is one bird that both looks and sounds beautiful.

A Western Meadowlark Sings for All of Us

A Western Meadowlark Sings for All of Us

Click on the picture above to enlarge

If you don’t remember the beautiful song of a Western Meadowlark or if you just want to hear it one more time from the comfort of your desk, please listen to this YouTube video. It’s worth every one of its 23 seconds.


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Posted in: Photography

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Paul Jabara // Jun 1, 2011 at 9:03 pm

    Whats wrong with Kansas ?? The western meadowlark is our state bird. The greater prairie chicken has a hunting season in Ks.

  • 2 David Mendosa // Jun 2, 2011 at 5:37 am


    I really didn’t mean to attack Kansas! Sorry. It’s just that Colorado is now my home state.