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Wrong Way in a Buffalo Herd

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Wrong Way in a Buffalo Herd

Old 03-16-19, 12:55 PM
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MikeSimone
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Wrong Way in a Buffalo Herd

I was stationed at Fort Sill, OK in October 1980, near Lawton. On a local Saturday club ride, I was alone out front on a packed dirt road in the Wichita Wildlife Refuge adjoining Fort Sill, which was open back then to cyclists on occasion. Passing by long-horn steer and tall grass filled with rattlers and tarantulas, I thought nothing at first of the cloud of dust ahead on the road -- must be a Park ranger or maintenance vehicle. A minute later I realized it was an oncoming small herd of buffalo trotting on the road!! I turned around, but was now headed into the wind and uphill as I heard and felt the stamping of hooves. The herd of about 12 buffalo split into two lines and pounded past me with about a foot to spare on either side -- big mamas and papas up front glaring at me, and little ones struggling to keep up. They stank to high heaven, but moved on and then off into a field. About three minutes later the cycling group caught up and couldn't understand at first why I was standing in the road by my bike with heart pounding faster than it ever did in a race or parachute jump! The Army had a sense of humor, I guess, about sending me to the only installations in America with free-roaming buffalo -- Fort Greely, Alaska in 1976; Fort Sill/Wichita, Oklahoma in 1980; and then on to Fort Riley, Kansas. Needless to say, I did not ride again anywhere near where the Kansas buffalo grazed. Mike Simone, COL (Ret.) U.S. Army (and still riding, but only near squirrels, birds, small dogs . . .)
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Old 03-16-19, 03:31 PM
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Great story Mike!

Ive wondered how cantankerous Bison are. I almost rode my bike on the 30 mile loop through Theodore Roosevelt National Park last July. But opted to just ride integrated van with my wife. About 2/3 of the way around we came up on a nice sized herd in and along both sides of the road. They were stretched out far enough it would have taken some time to get through them. At that point I was glad to be in the car.

I also encountered one while climbing the road out to the East Entrance in Yellowstone a couple years ago. We both stared at each other for a while and then he went back to eating his breakfast. If hed come at me I probably would have turned around and gone down the road that Id just climbed,




On the side of the road as I was climbing up to Sylvan Pass.
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Old 03-16-19, 04:19 PM
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Originally Posted by MikeSimone View Post
I was stationed at Fort Sill, OK in October 1980, near Lawton. On a local Saturday club ride, I was alone out front on a packed dirt road in the Wichita Wildlife Refuge adjoining Fort Sill, which was open back then to cyclists on occasion. Passing by long-horn steer and tall grass filled with rattlers and tarantulas, I thought nothing at first of the cloud of dust ahead on the road -- must be a Park ranger or maintenance vehicle. A minute later I realized it was an oncoming small herd of buffalo trotting on the road!! I turned around, but was now headed into the wind and uphill as I heard and felt the stamping of hooves. The herd of about 12 buffalo split into two lines and pounded past me with about a foot to spare on either side -- big mamas and papas up front glaring at me, and little ones struggling to keep up. They stank to high heaven, but moved on and then off into a field. About three minutes later the cycling group caught up and couldn't understand at first why I was standing in the road by my bike with heart pounding faster than it ever did in a race or parachute jump! The Army had a sense of humor, I guess, about sending me to the only installations in America with free-roaming buffalo -- Fort Greely, Alaska in 1976; Fort Sill/Wichita, Oklahoma in 1980; and then on to Fort Riley, Kansas. Needless to say, I did not ride again anywhere near where the Kansas buffalo grazed. Mike Simone, COL (Ret.) U.S. Army (and still riding, but only near squirrels, birds, small dogs . . .)
Reeled in by the peloton............. of buffalo!
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Old 03-16-19, 05:00 PM
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Yup, reeled in and dropped ignominiously! But at least the buffalo peloton sprinters did not elbow me as I did my best to stay upright.

Mike
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Old 03-16-19, 05:08 PM
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At least you didn't try to roller skate in a buffalo herd.

Last edited by Dan Burkhart; 03-16-19 at 08:42 PM.
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Old 03-17-19, 09:40 AM
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had to..

Lyrics
Ya can't roller skate in a buffalo herd
Ya can't roller skate in a buffalo herd
Ya can't roller skate in a buffalo herd
But you can be happy if you've a mind to
Ya can't take a shower in a parakeet cage
Ya can't take a shower in a parakeet cage
Ya can't take a shower in a parakeet cage
But you can be happy if you've a mind to
All ya gotta do is put your mind to it
Knuckle down, buckle down, do it, do it, do it
Well, ya can't go a-swimmin' in a baseball pool
Ya can't go swimmin' in a baseball pool
Ya can't go swimmin' in a baseball pool
But you can be happy if you've a mind to
Ya can't change film with a kid on your back
Ya can't change film with a kid on your back
Ya can't change film with a kid on your back
But you can be happy if you've a mind to
Ya can't drive around with a tiger in your car
Ya can't drive around with a tiger in your car
Ya can't drive around with a tiger in your car
But you can be happy if you've a mind to
All ya gotta do is put your mind to it
Knuckle down, buckle down do it, do it, do it
Well, ya can't roller skate in a buffalo herd
Ya can't roller skate in a buffalo herd
Ya can't roller skate in a buffalo herd
But you can be happy if you've a mind to
Ya can't go fishin' in a watermelon patch
Ya can't go fishin' in a watermelon patch
Ya can't go fishin' in a watermelon patch
But you can be happy if you've a mind to
Ya can't roller skate in a buffalo herd
Ya can't roller skate in a buffalo herd...Songwriters: Roger Miller
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Old 03-17-19, 10:12 AM
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Buffalo are not all that mean. In fact, many can be house broken, unlike cyclists.
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Old 03-17-19, 10:21 AM
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Yup, Bison is what we have in Canada and the USA. Buffalo are a totally different beast - and are found in SE Asia - like in Vietnam, Cambodia, and India.

Two totally different beasts. Does not matter what Roger Millar wrote - a nice song but he bent the truth. Might as well call Black Labrador dogs "wolves" ....
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Old 03-17-19, 10:23 AM
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Originally Posted by berner View Post
Buffalo are not all that mean. In fact, many can be house broken, unlike cyclists. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jtnZ...?v=jtnZ2vFR9Hc
That's a heck of a video.

I do a gravel ride in the fall that goes through a nature preserve near Des Moines with free roaming buffalo. They're beautiful but yeah I don't want to make them mad.
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Old 03-18-19, 10:03 AM
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Originally Posted by tmac100 View Post
Yup, Bison is what we have in Canada and the USA. Buffalo are a totally different beast - and are found in SE Asia - like in Vietnam, Cambodia, and India.
Unless you respect the Native Americans, who've been around here for a while. Although each language has its own word for the beast, when they're talking so us European descendants can understand them, they call them "buffalo."
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Old 03-18-19, 10:09 AM
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Yup, we all have our own version of reality ... I will stick with Bison.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bison
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Old 03-18-19, 11:04 AM
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South Dakota back in 2015. Yes. I was on my bike. Back in 2000, while riding east from W. Yellowstone, there were a couple lying in the roadway. They were likely taking advantage of the heat from the warm asphalt. In Yellowstone they kill and injure far more people than bears do.


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Old 03-18-19, 11:12 AM
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Originally Posted by bikemig View Post
That's a heck of a video.
They're beautiful but yeah I don't want to make them mad.
Yep. They can get up to over 20 mph quickly. As most animals are, they are more protective when with their young. As I noted just above, they kill and injure more people in Yellowstone N.P. than bears do. Most of the time the confrontations are the result of dumb people getting too close for photos. "Here, son. Take and camera and get a photo of dad next to this docile cow-looking thing." When I rode through Yellowstone in 2000 I was given a yellow flyer warning of the dangers they pose. Those same flyers were tacked to just about every picnic table and in places like restrooms. Who knows why people do the stupid stuff they do.

But sometimes it's unavoidable. Several years ago two young people who were working hospitality in the park were walking a trail to their dorm one evening. They came around a corner and startled a bison. I believe one of the girls was badly injured, if not killed.
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Old 03-29-19, 05:26 AM
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Dont roller skate in a buffalo herd.
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Old 03-29-19, 07:38 AM
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@MikeSimone;20840563
Holy "cow"!
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Old 04-04-19, 04:47 PM
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Wood bison herd that I encountered near Fort Providence NWT when I was working up there a dozen years ago. I saw the herd every time I drove that stretch of road.
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Old 04-05-19, 03:15 PM
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For that you need a buffalo bike!

Buffalo Bicycles

Or is it bison bike?

These are the bikes provided by World Bicycle Relief to the needy. They are awesome!
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