When we arrived at the Zapata Ranch, we parked in a grove of very tall cottonwood trees, and then went into the welcome center next to the log lodge building. It was all very pretty and picturesque, but we were so anticipating seeing the bison, that we did not really take in the scene as we might have. However when we returned, having seen the 500+ bison out on the range, the tall trees seemed to be speaking to me.
I mentioned that I thought they were at least 100 years old, to have reached such a stature. Later, when reading about the Ranch on their website, I learned that I had underestimated the age of those cottonwood trees. By at least 100 years. You see, Zebulon Pike (yes, the one whose name is on Pike's Peak) camped underneath this same grove of trees when he was on his western expedition at the behest of the US President. The President was Thomas Jefferson. The year was...1808.