While visiting Arches National Park near Moab, David and I encounter some Mountain Sheep near the road. After watching a ram and three ewes for a while, we continue down the road and encounter another large ram running along the fence. We pace him slowly with the vehicle waiting for him to jump the fence.
Mule deer are beautiful fence jumpers but I had never seen a shorter-legged Mountain Sheep jump anything. We were waiting for the event when the ram suddenly charges the fence and hits it hard head on. After much crashing and struggling the ram manages to crash completely through the wire fence. However, one strand of barbed wire was caught on one horn and he was attempting to back away to free himself. At that point, we had stopped the vehicle and I was wondering how we were going to untangle the thrashing beast. However, the wire finally gave way and the ram was free. The ram then bounded up the steep slope like nothing unusual had happened.
So THAT is how Mountain Sheep cross fences?
Meanwhile, in Arches National Park, we drove to the end of the paved park road and hiked the well-traveled trail to Landscape Arch. We then continued on the less-traveled trail past Wall Arch.
(Wall Arch is a rather scary arch that has had several partial collapses. I wouldn’t be surprised if it falls down soon.)
Soon we were in an area where we could look down on Landscape Arch.
This is near Partition Arch.
Then around the corner to visit Navajo Arch.
We then returned to the vehicle and still had enough daylight to stop at Skyline Arch before heading for home.