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2011

We completed all three scheduled adventures for 2011 resulting in arb participation in 20 miles of fence rehabilitation. This included the successful removal of 8.5 miles of page wire. On July 23–24 all arbians mustered at Raymond Pearson's ranch just south of Orion for two days of awesome fence rehab under the expert guidance of both the Alberta Fish & Game Association and Alberta Conservation Association. The time spent at the Pearson ranch was most rewarding. Right as we were pounding away, replacing the bottom strand of barbed wire with smooth, we noticed a crew of prongs approaching the finished fence behind us. We stopped while the buck inspected our workmanship and then led his harem through the fence line for a smooth unfettered crossing. It was positively the snake's hips! Speaking of snakes...we also learned that all those holes that we thought were snake holes were actually vole holes. How did we ever think that snakes coulda dug those holes anyway...

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After finishing our required mileage of fence we stopped off for a spectacular view at Red Rock Coulee Natural Area located on #887 north of Orion. This area is loaded with large red sandstone concretions. It is written that the patient observer can see short-horned lizards, rattlesnakes and scorpions. Apparently, we were not very patient.

Now then, Onefour (August 12–14) was a very different experience. First, Onefour is the site of one of the Government of Canada's agricultural research substations. Although they still won't tell us what really goes on there, we are sure that there is some pronking on the rise. Onefour is one of the biggest challenges for the pronghorns since it may just have the most page wire. Which, once again, provided us with one of our biggest challenges. More often than we liked, the page wire had become embedded in the soil and proved to be difficult to remove. We managed. But in the heat at Onefour this year, our success was stressful. One afternoon it reached 37 Celsius! We persevered and exceeded all expectations. Nearly 10 kilometres of page wire was removed from the landscape forever, aiding in easier movement and predator avoidance for the pronghorn.

 

Our last outing of 2011, on September 24-25 at the Krippl ranch, was another scorcher. We lucked out with our route. The fence led us through beautiful massive sand dunes and ended up at the awe inspiring Pakowki Lake.