A Morning on Safari

Monday, September 5, 2016

This morning, we finally made it out to Briarwood Ranch Safari. This place is only 20 minutes from us and I cannot believe we haven't been sooner! I had heard of it, but didn't realize just how neat of a place it really was. We will be back many, many times.

You can drive your own car through the park, or jump on one of their covered wagons. For our first experience, I was glad we opted for the wagons. It was really neat to relax and enjoy the ride through the safari park!

They had SO MANY neat animals, all of which were acclimated to seeing people and excited to make new friends (if you had food, that is). Have you ever fed a zebra, water buffalo, or yak?! How about a baby deer? Totally neat experience. 

The first animal we experienced on the ride was an emu, which was a bit of an intimidating start to our adventure. First of all, I totally thought it was an ostrich, so apparently I need to brush up on my ornithology. Secondly, those things are feisty! They darted write up, ready to get their fill of feed, and were not afraid to help themselves. One snuck up right behind Beckett and helped himself before Buck even noticed. He was NOT impressed. Check out his face in that second picture. HA!

Next, we made friends with a bunch of zebra and several deer. These were definitely among my favorite. They're such gorgeous animals! The tan deer with the spots looked like something straight out of a fairy tale. Of course, I forgot my good camera (this has become a trend in our lives) so we were stuck relying our phones for photos. They definitely don't do the animals justice.

We were concerned about how Beckett would react to the animals. He's been through a bit of a scaredy-pants phase and is pretty unsure about mingling with animals. He's really not interested in touching or feeding them, which is fine with me. I was just glad he didn't melt down. I think that by the end he was pretty intrigued and will acclimate as we visit more. 

Charlie, on the other hand, was fearless. She's too young to be concerned about being eaten alive yet. She was VERY interested in and entertained by all of the animals. She was also pretty intrigued with an empty bucket for a while though, so I guess the "entertains Charlie" bar is pretty low.

Nate wasn't even convinced that he wanted to come with us, but I'm pretty sure he had more fun than either of the other kiddos. Of course, he had no fear and jumped right into interacting with the animals, and just like our adventure to the aquarium, this animal-lover was full of fun facts to share!

The drive through the safari park was not all the ranch had to offer. We also got to hang with some other animals and get up close and personal. Of course, Beckett's favorite part of any outing is the playground (not kidding), so we hung there for a good half hour. The weather is FINALLY starting to cool down so it was a really beautiful morning! We got season passes, so I can't wait to come back in the fall and relax here with a cup of coffee.

It's so much fun that Charlie is walking. It makes adventures significantly more fun and easy to navigate. With Beckett, we love having new excursions to talk about. The teacher part of me looks forward to learning experiences. Smarty pants over here is learning to spell 3-letter words (CVC, for you primary friends) and was really excited to come home and spell cat and yak (all by himself!). Dad has been doing a really great job helping him learn new words to spell (yes, I swoon).

Without a doubt, we will be spending a lot of time at Briarwood! We highly recommend it :)
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