Tag Archives: Osage County

Twenty Four Hours in Osage County

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Those of you who know me, know that I’m a Geocacher. The Tulsa Area Geocachers have an annual event in the Fall that they have at various State Parks in Oklahoma and this year they went to one of my favorite spots in Oklahoma, Osage Hills State Park up in Osage County. It is a beautiful wooded, hilly location with lots of camping spots and a friendly accommodating staff.

Heather and Logan stayed home. They hate geocaching. Hate might be too mild a word for their feelings about it. So I went by myself.

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So it was fun finding the various temporary caches placed by the participants. Some of the people are diabolically clever.

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Osage Hills is known for having the remnants of a Civilian Conservation Commission camp built back in the 1930’s to house young men who helped build the facilities still used at the park.

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Here is a link to an interesting short blog post about the history of the CCC at Osage Hills. I learned that the camp was active from 1935 to 1941. Its amazing that so much remains 75 years after the camp ceased operation.

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Mainly I wandered the trails. I didn’t encounter many other geocachers as I started with the furthest removed caches and worked back and was more interested in taking pictures anyway.

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I found the camp dynamite hut. It looks solid enough still, except for the roof.

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I loved Lookout Lake. No geocachers here, just fishermen.

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Found me a little critter. He told me he wasn’t a geocache.

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The next day I got up early and went out to Sand Creek to take some photos. One of the prettist places in the state as far as I am concerned.

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And then I drove out to the nearby Nature Conservancy’s Tallgrass Prairie Preserve. I always love the wide open spaces with rolling hills and the bison.

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I’ve never been able to photograph the feeling of exapanse of this place. It is almost 40,000 acres.

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It is huge and goes on forever.

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And then I drove down to Woolaroc, Frank Phillips’ (of Phillips Petroleum) country place. Woolaroc is an acronym for “Woods, Lakes,and Rocks”. He has a first class western art museum, a buffalo herd, and all sorts of other stuff that an oil gazillionaire needs.

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And a barn for the the critters.  I love the barn.

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And the landscaping (rockscaping).

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And the Native American design motif. I know its cultural misappropriation but I still like it.

And then I went home.  But I had a great time.

The Bison and Deer of Woolaroc’s Wildlife Preserve

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My brother Bob drove all the way from Corpus Christi to Tulsa to have Thanksgiving with us. Logan and I decided to take him to the Woolaroc Museum and Wildlife Preserve about an hour from Tulsa in the Osage hills. It is Frank Phillips old ranch. You know the guy who started Phillips Petroleum. He is long gone but the company he founded and his ranch are still going. I love the museum, but that is for another day. Today I am posting about the bison and deer on the preserve.

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There are lots of bison there. I used an HDR technique to get halfway decent shots. I don’t know about you but bison shots are tough. They just soak up the light and end up being black blobs unless I overexpose the shot and then their surroundings look like they have been nuked.

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There was a calf there. This one is red. I am not sure but I think somebody told me that all bison calves are red. Anybody out there know for sure?

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Where does a bison lay down goes a variation on the old joke. You go make this guy move if you don’t like where he has planted himself.

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There were lots of deer out Saturday. They are very watchful but not as wary as they would be outside the preserve.

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I like how they lock their attention on you. I am not a deer expert mind you and the only thing I shoot them with is my camera but I think these are European fallow deer. There are also Japanese Sika deer and we saw some but they were far off. And hey readers, if I am mistaken let me know!

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Whoops, what is going on over there.

Woolaroc has lots of other animals roaming loose. Just as we were leaving the gate a herd of elk appeared and they have Scottish highland cattle, and Texas longhorns.

Linking with Camera Critters and Saturday’s Critters