Saturday, November 1, 2008

Conquering the West

Driving through New Mexico after leaving Albuquerque, I was on the phone with Ramsay when I almost missed a sign that said something like "See the Wolves! Wolf Sanctuary detour here". That sounded like something right up my alley, so I turned around and took the less-beaten path off interstate U.S. 40 and into unknown territory. It turns out the sanctuary is in the middle of the Zuni indian reservation, a vast, wild and rugged area that was MUCH more interesting than the scenery along the highway.
I would have arrived at Wild Spirit sanctuary past closing time, but for some reason they don't go by daylight savings time there, so I luckily had an hour left to get on the last tour of the day.
It was fascinating. The little headquarters was cozy, the people friendly, and, of course, the stars of the show, the wolves themselves were brilliant. They didn't even have to do anything... just seeing them, being in their presence, was amazing. And when they all started howling, it was enough to give you chills. We were also lucky enough to be there when one extra-tame one was being walked, and got to pet him. To top it all off, we got a private tour into the fox's den by the director, Leyton Cougar, who had some fascinating stories to tell.

I wish I could squeeze more photos of the wolves into this blog; I took some pretty good ones. But you can go to their website and see more at:

After stopping for the night in Flagstaff, I headed north up into Utah to the Best Friends Society's animal sanctuary, where I was to do two days of volunteering to get an idea of what went on there. (I've learned that the best way to get behind the scenes of an organization is to actually work there, so just taking a tour as a visitor wasn't enough).

No comments: