Monday was the Big Trip, the farthest place I was desperate to see
and Susan was sweet and willing enough to drive me there. Monday, Labor Day, was Head
Smashed In Buffalo Jump. Simply put, it's a native buffalo jump. But the place is
ultra cool simply for the name. Weirdly enough, they never explained the name, although
I've heard the reasoning. In any case, we stopped at a DQ on the way and had a brunch,
which was nice. After which, we continued through the beauty of the plains till we
got there. Here's the sign announcing the place.
Apparently, this place was also the first professional archeological
dig in Alberta.
The area was beautiful. I just kept taking pictures of the landscape
over and over. You can see the rentable tipis in this shot.
Look! Proof I was actually there, barring pshop manipulation.
Look! Awkward posture! I have no idea how that happened...
This is the required shot. If you look up Head Smashed In Buffalo Jump
online, you will see that most of all pictures on the web are this exact shot.
More landscape, this shot taken from the general height of the
jump. The museum has a walk where if you feel like walking about 30 minutes or
so you can visit the actual cliff where the buffalos were chased off. Neither
of us felt like that much exercise, but I did get a shot of the landscape
from the correct height.
One of the more interesting parts of the museum was the fact that
they taught Blackfoot mythology by projecting words on rocks. It looked really
cool, better than this shot. I wanted more info, but for some reason they
didn't have any mythology books in the book store.
Baby animals stuffed for educational purposes. Not sure how I
feel about that. They were cute, though, in a dead sort of way...
Here's a better idea of what the place looked like.
A closer shot of the stuffed buffalo at the top of the mock cliff.
Here's a skin with some mock history on it, to explain to
everyone how some of the history was passed down. Next to it was a key of some
of the pictograms. I couldn't really get this to look as good, but I
wanted to include it here because it really was pretty interesting.
A better shot of the cliff diorama at the bottom of the museum. The museum was set up to go through from top to bottom, and at the bottom was the mock cliff. It also went in an approximately chronological order. They put a decent amount of thought into the place.
They had a stuffed buffalo at the bottom and I wanted a shot
that got across the size of the bastards. I got down on the floor to get
this shot, but it still doesn't accurately respresent the size. To put it
simply, they are big. Bigger than you first think.
Oh my gawwwwd! They're gonna land on us! Well, not the dead ones,
obviously, but there's a reason this particular site is named Head Smashed In.
Despite the place seeming pretty up on everything, they apparently
are still a bit on the light side when it comes to financing. I was amused at the Mac
Plus, but someone was amused at it before we got there, as well ^_^
On the way out. Still very impressed with the beauty of
Alberta. By this point we were feeling pretty broke, as there was a lot
of interesting swag to purchase in the gift store. I got both a medium
stuffed buffalo and a baby buffalo. Robs got a tiny baby as well.
Another shot of the landscape, this one is another one of those
failed atttempts at a panoramic shot I've been doing, in an effort to really
remember how impressive everything was. As usual, click on it for a non-teenincey
And here's a shot of the main cliff (far left) and the auxiliary cliff
(two thirds of the way across the pic) they stampeded the buffalo off of.
Click for the larger version, again.
On the way home, we stopped off at Safeway and we picked up
stuff to make homemade tacos with. I cooked that night, using the buffalo meat
that Robyn provided (which seemed somehow appropriate) and fried up flour
tortillas for the dinner while Talon chopped the heck out of about a zillion
types of vegetables. Later, Keahi and Nikki stopped by and we kicked back till
the wee hours.
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