Meet HOPE the Rare White Bison Born Near Missoula
For many of us in western Montana, the commute to work each day involves some of the worlds most majestic scenery. Meanwhile, people in other parts of the country are stuck in bumper to bumper traffic, next to an stinky oil refinery. Many who work in Missoula, commute from surrounding areas. Lolo, which has become essentially a suburb of Missoula, has a large percentage of its residents commuting into town for work. Each day, those commuters pass what is known as the Bitterroot Bison Company. A small ranch that raises, you guessed it, bison.
Seeing these majestic creatures each day is something we take for granted. Many people plan entire family vacations to Yellowstone National Park just to witness a bison. They are a rare sight for most Americans, but they used to be everywhere. In fact, according to bitterrootbison.com,
The American Bison once ranged from the tip of Alaska into the Southern United States. At their peak, bison numbers ranged upwards of 60,000,000. They dominated the landscape as one of the most mobile of the woolly creatures, which is probably why they are one of the few animals to survive the Ice Age.
What is even more of a rare sight, is witnessing a white bison. A white bison is considered sacred among many native american tribes. According to legendsofamerica.com:
The Lakota (Sioux) Nation has passed down The Legend of the White Buffalo–a story now approximately 2,000 years old–at many council meetings, sacred ceremonies, and through the tribe’s storytellers. There are several variations, but all are meaningful and tell of the same outcome. Have communication with the Creator through prayer with clear intent for Peace, Harmony, and Balance for all life living in the Earth Mother.
Spirituality among Natives Americans and non-Native Americans has been a strong force for those who believe in the power of the Great Spirit or God.
According to Distinctly Montana, the calf's official name is "Hope."
Check out the following virtual tour of the Bitterroot Bison Ranch