For those who didn’t know, I went on a two week trip out west recently. The plan was to get out to South Dakota (the Black Hills area) first, which included a trip to Custer State Park. Technically, there are free-roaming and I guess you could consider that “wild”. But certain members of the herds get plucked each year and sold off and others get vaccinations and the like. In any case, it’s known that these buffalo roam wherever they like in general. This includes right up next to roads and traffic.

The captures below are from one such event. We were driving through the park and came upon a herd half on one side of the road and half on the other. It was my first time seeing them up close, if we reached out our hands from the truck we probably could have touched some of them! In any case, we noticed that one was rolling around on the ground, kicking up dust and grunting something fierce. We’re not sure if it was struggling to get up, just part of the process, or something more… self-gratifying… but it was amazing seeing the beast in action!

The grunts all came from this position.
The “thump” heard as the buffalo hit the ground was pretty loud even at about 25 yards away.
As it regained composure…
…it shook off chunks of dirt and dust from the ground.
A bulging eye and stuck out tongue and the buffalo was ready to go!
Only to notice that it may have had an audience the whole time…

If you want to see more of my work, check out my Wilderness Photography! And I post a lot of previews on My Instagram as well!

I still can’t believe what I’ve seen on this trip! Stay tuned for more!