The sheep were back this year. And that was a big deal I hear. The annual Heritage Days Festival celebrates the history and heritage of Bayfield, and ranching has played an important role in our little town’s history. The sheep have been a part of this festival for a while, but recently the rancher couldn’t afford to move his sheep from the high country down to the lower valley to coincide with Heritage Days because there was still plenty of time for them to eat up in the mountains before moving down (where they would need to purchase food for the sheep), so I hear.
Well, a new rancher was willing this year and so the sheep were back. Surprisingly (or unsurprisingly if you’re familiar with Bayfield) this wasn’t my first run in with sheep on the highway — one day while cycling I saw the hand painted signs: “Sheep in road ahead, use alternate route”, I kept going, it was late in the day and I thought I had missed them, after a while I forgot those signs and soon enough I turned a corner and was met by at least 500 sheep.
A couple hundred people lined the sides of the Buck Highway Saturday morning to watch the sheep walk by. As they approached and saw all these people standing around they got scared and stopped, then ran up a driveway, got herded back, stood around some more, then finally ran past us all. Let me tell you, it was exciting.
Click below for some more pictures and video.