Random Bison

I went to the William S. Hart Park in Newhall, CA to see bison. Years ago, my aunt took me there to see them and I wanted to show them to my boyfriend.  It just seems random to me that there is a park with bison just chilling by a senior center. We drove into the main entrance of the park because I assumed there was quick access to the bison by that entrance.  We walked up a road that is above where they are, but did eventually drive around towards the senior center to get closer to them.

What I did not know previously, is that there are other animals in the main entrance area with llamas, alpacas, turtles, pigs, chickens, roosters, and a gift shop, museum, and ranch.  Naturally, nothing was open the day I went. But the animals were all out, so I did get to visit them.  I am not the biggest fan of caged animals, but did give them some attention and love. braawk brawwk

 The first bison we saw was rolling in the dirt, and then started to bluff charge at us.  Just didn’t feel like dealing with humans that day, I guess. There is a fence, though, so we were not terribly concerned. They can jump as high as 6’ and that fence seems a bit taller than that, but I haven’t read anything about that ever being a problem anyway.  We did walk up the trail a bit and ran into a local on a bike that was telling us about William S Hart and encouraging us to check out the museum.  The trail, he said, goes from the bison up to the house on the hill. We did not have time for that whole walk, so it is on the list for another time.

He tried to recollect a story he heard about years prior. He remembered it as someone shot a bison, but he never heard anything more, like if the person was caught. When I got home and looked for that story, I only found one story from 2004. It was not a shooting, but officials believed the bison escaped the enclosure without anyone noticing for days. It most likely ran out of food and water, in the heat of the summer, thus expiring.

William S. Hart was a stage and movie actor in the 1920s. I am fascinated that the 1920s were 100 years ago, by the way.  When he died, he donated his house and land to Los Angeles County.  The bison were donated to the site by Walt Disney in 1962. Per signs in the park, some bison were traded with some from other places to avoid inbreeding.  That was one of the first things I wondered, so am glad they address it straight away.

There is a museum and ranch. They are currently closed due to a transfer of ownership. Check their website for updates.  

William S. Hart Museum, 24151 Newhall Avenue, Newhall, CA 91321, (661) 254-4584

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s