Sunday, August 12, 2012

Hogle Zoo

Friday, Kent and Melanie took their oldest granddaughter Maddie and I to the Utah Hogle Zoo. Nice zoo! That was fun! Kent looks at a few things, then finds a place to sit, read, and watch people.

The bad news is that my camera battery died and my phone memory was full!  I only got a couple of pictures.

While we were near the otters (which we didn't see. Nice exhibit, though, where you can see them swimming under water - IF they were out there swimming, that is) and the seals (also a really nice exhibit), a thunderstorm came on and heavy rain began. Maddie became concerned for Grandpa (Bumpa or something like that) so I went back to check.On the way I saw a bunch of kids taking shelter in a concrete crawl through "hollow log". Pretty cute. Of course, Grandpa was fine. He was in the process of moving to a table with an umbrella. And the rain let up.

They had a great bird show. Birds flying low over our heads. One flew away to the rhino enclosure. No problem. Even if one of their birds leaves the zoo, they have gps tracking devices. We had seen a hawk, I think, flying loose, but with tresses on its legs, and Kent had chatted with a zoo keeper. Bald eagles, other eagles, hawks, owls, a vulture, doves, chickens. They did the thing where they asked for a volunteer from the audience with $5. The volunteer (who obviously had been there before) only had a dollar. The bird flew up, took the dollar, flew back to the handler and put the money in his pocket. They asked if she wanted the dollar back. She said no. So the bird brought her two tickets for the little train ride and flew her dollar to the donation box. The asked for a brave volunteer and got a really little boy to come down to the show area. “Smile your biggest smile.” He did. Very cute! Put something in his outstretched hand. Asked if he was afraid of birds.  "Have you seen a California Condor?" (???!!!) "Just kidding, Mom." A small white bird flew down, landed on his arm, and ate the seed. The showman asked how it felt, but the boy didn't say anything. "Speechless, huh?" nod.He also got 2 train tickets.

We saw leaf-nosed bats, elephants (and baby elephant), bison (Kent asked what was by the sun - or son?. I said another son), and giraffes. Lots of monkeys. I didn't see the zebras and gazelles. They were way off down another hill, I think

The polar bear was great! He would swim right up the viewing wall and rise up right in front of the people - mostly children - launch off on his back, glide out, then stop, look around, submerge and swim back to the viewing window again and again. Face to face with a polar bear! He seemed friendly. Suddenly there was a thunder clap and he ran away to his den.

By the Bald Eagle enclosure there was a Eagle nest statue thing for kids to get in. Eagle nest. I got a little choked up. Melanie and I joked about what fun it would be to have a picture of our Scouts in the Eagle nest

Larsons have a super membership with AJ & Stephanie. Admission for them, 2 guests (ok, I think Kent is one of the guests) and 6 children. Plus unlimited carousel and train rides. Maddie rode the merry-go-round (with Melanie beside her) and us girls all rode the train - not handicapped accessible. I was hoping the train would go around the zoo more (and maybe see the zebras) but it was a short, but nice ride.

Fun day. God is quite creative.

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