My Reminiscences of events, old and new, and travels, far and near
Friday, April 19, 2013
Wild Animals in Pine Mountain, Georgia
This is a continuation of our stay in Pine Mountain, Georgia, where we rented a small cabin in F. D. Roosevelt State Park. It was still sunny on Monday 8 April, so we decided to visit an animal park outside of town.
We arrived at Wild Animal Safari in the morning. We decided to visit this park as we had visited another drive-through park in West Palm Beach, Florida in March 2010 called Lion Country Safari and enjoyed it - click here to see my post on that park. Below is a picture of a giraffe I photographed in Florida.
In Pine Mountain Wild Animal Safari in March, one can drive their own vehicle in the park or a Zebra Minivan can be rented with slats instead of windows. We drove our car and bought some animal food pellets then we started the 3-mile Serengeti Adventure drive in the park. We were following a van filled with children and could hear their peel of laughter when animals approached their vehicle. This is a wonderful place for kids. The animals are used to be fed by visitors and step up to your window. I had the window partly opened and one large cow came and licked the window then another slobbered on the glass. It was not easy to take their photos as they were so close to my nose and the window glass was dirty. (Click on collage twice to embiggen.)
The animals come toward the vehicles but if the windows are closed they wait for the next car or walk away - they are used to all this. The giraffe looked into our window as you can see by my top picture. I did not need a telephoto lens!
A big mama sow with her 3 piglets walked toward us. The piglets were adorable.
There were many cows, antelopes, deer, ostriches, lamas, zebras, buffalo, etc.
The camel was behind a fence but you could place food into his mouth. I did not because I knew that camels can bite, so I just threw the pellets on the ground.
The animals have lots of room to roam around as there are hundreds of acres in the park.
Coming to the side of the road the animals look at you with expectation - I wonder if the park feeds them little to ensure that the animals will wait for food pellets given to them from vehicles.
Then we drove by a lake turned red with Georgia clay.
Colony of turtles thought it was just fine.
Some animals are behind fences but their area is large. I understand that many of these animals were rescued and would not have been able to survive in the wild anyway.
After the ride we went on to the "Walk-About" which is more like a zoo with a reptile enclosure and more animals on display.
Some cuddly baby bears were sleeping and looked so sweet!
There was also a petting zoo and I wished we had our little grandsons with us, but we followed a family with 3 small children and they were having a fun time.
An animal I had not seen before, with beautiful eyes, is called a Patagonian Cavy - found in South America from Peru to Northern Argentina
An Alpaca with some of its hair sticking up was reminiscent of a unicorn.
I took about 280 photos but cannot show them all here. I'll finish with a pretty peacock in all its splendor that looked at us then jumped on its house and gazed the other way.
We went back to our car and left. It was after 2 o'clock by then so we hoped we could find some lunch in Pine Mountain. We drove to the center of town.
We went into the "Bakery and Cafe at Rose Cottage" - a bakery and antique store combined I think since there were articles for sale. My husband had the "grilled hot smoked ham, sauerkraut and horse radish cream on flaxseed bread" at $8.75 and I had "roast sweet peppers and onions layered in toasted flaxseed wheat with hummus" at $7.50 and it was delicious. They came with a choice of salad or soup. I chose the fresh squeezed lemonade with ginger and that had a nice interesting taste.
After lunch we walked around a bit. There is a marker explaining that a railroad used to come through town. I wish it still were an active railroad. The tracks area has been covered up and grass grows there now.
We looked at the flowers around the fountain, which turned out to be more like rhubarb to my untrained eyes, then we sat on some inviting benches to feel the atmosphere. Several cars went by, but not much else happened. One thing did bug me - the name of a store. I can understand that it is chic to use foreign words, but they should be used correctly. In French, adjectives and nouns must agree with the gender - feminine or masculine. For example "voyage" is masculine so you say "Bon Voyage" bon (good) being in its masculine form. But "Cuisine" is feminine, so you'd say "bonne cuisine." This store advertized "Bon Cuisine" it would be the same if you went into a French town and a store was called "The 2 Womans" instead of women - it hurts the eyes.
There were several interesting shops in town. The Pine Mountain Trading Post contained antiques, vintage and collectible whatnot and a Book Nook with a variety of new and old books.
The Emporium had a good selection of antiques. In a small area, on the side of the store, The Cup and Chaucer had many second-hand books and coffee. We were tempted by several books but restrained ourselves since a quantity of unread books are waiting at home.
It was still early afternoon so we had plenty of time to drive on Highway 190, admire the view, then go back to F. D. Roosevelt State Park, and that's what we did. But I still stopped along the way to take pictures of a stunning old-fashioned wisteria bush - a great display of strong vines with lovely mauve romantic flowers.