Christmas Day is basically the best day of the year. The day after Christmas is probably the worst. You’ve already played with your toys, watched 10 of your new movies, and eaten yourself sick from treats. So instead of moping around the house, we took a drive out to Antelope Island for the sunset. Not only was it beautiful, but we saw a few critters we were not expecting to see.
Antelope Island is a state park, and has a $10 entrance fee for cars. Their website can be found here. There’s a museum/visitor’s center; a beach with bathrooms, showers, and picnic tables; multiple hiking trails; Fielding Garr Ranch and farm; and places to camp. They have fun events there throughout the year, including a bison round-up, a moonlight bike ride, and star-gazing parties.
We went there with the intent of watching the sunset, so the “golden light” favored by photographers was already in full swing for the drive. We opted not to stop by the visitor’s center this time and instead made a stop at the beach.
The bison that call the island home were roaming all over in large groups, grazing on what grass they could find. We also drove right next to the island’s namesake: pronghorn antelope, the fastest North American land animal. They can reach speeds of up to 70 mph, although lucky for them there aren’t cheetahs on the island to chase them.
The sun had gone down behind the clouds at this point, so we drove around the east side of the island toward Garr Ranch. We were still keeping a lookout for any bison or antelope when all of a sudden a coyote ran out in front of the road. Unfortunately we didn’t have our zoom lens, but we did our best to capture the coyote.
We watched the little guy for a while until he disappeared in the tall grass. We continued on toward the ranch, and two more coyotes walked out onto the road! These walked right by, seemingly oblivious to our car. They walked so fast and the light was dim enough that we didn’t get great pictures again, but it was really cool to watch them!
After they left our view, we continued on the road once again to the ranch. The paved road ends just past the ranch, so we turned around as it was getting too dark to walk around and see anything. We encountered the coyotes again, and they just walked right down the road in front of us as we followed them with our headlights.
Since our pictures were turning out so terribly, I tried filming it. It’s also dark and gloomy, but we did watch the coyote in hunting mode!