What is a Wallow?
While growing up on a farm in Colorado, there was a special place in the pasture, which we called the Buffalo Wallow. This was but a low spot where rainwater collected, forming a bit of a pond in particularly wet years, and a trodden, sometimes muddy spot in dryer ones. It was magical for my siblings and I, because it was the only place within miles in which to wade. In the best years, it was full of eggs, which hatched into frogs, toads, and tiger salamanders. Once, it got waist deep...to a 10 year old. That year, we raised thousands of frogs and a handful of salamanders, in a stock tank in which we dumped eggs collected from the Buffalo Wallow.
We assumed, because we had one, that everyone knew what a Buffalo Wallow was. But I found out as I grew that most people don't. So I'll show you.
The Buffalo Wallow
This is the Buffalo Wallow, in September 2009. There was no water in it, and the mud had dried. It is called a wallow because the bison who came through the area would roll in it to get away from the insects and to cool themselves.
While it was wet, Dad's cows slopped through the wallow and enjoyed it, and now, my children take their turn.
While not exactly a lake, it is big enough to have fun in!
It's also a great place from which to watch sunsets.
The New Tadpole Hole
As the year had been quite rainy, I was disappointed that the Buffalo Wallow was dry by the time I got to take photos...
...but I remembered another hole at which the cows came to drink and wade, and found it full.
As it was growing dark, I wasn't about to let my daughter get all wet...but it was tempting for us both.
Until I thought about the quality of the water, that is. :) The cows had been wading already, all summer.
But it proved a fine place for throwing stones. We plan to be back next spring, and perhaps collect some tadpole eggs (mostly toads).