Today I gave a presentation in Salina Kansas. It is about 80 miles North of Wichita. The demonstration went very well. After the demo I headed back to Wichita but first I had to make a couple of stops.
The first place I stopped was the Smoky Hill Bison Co. I saw a sign on the road yesterday on my way to Salina (pronounced Sah-Line-Ah not Seh-lean-ah). I knew I wanted to check this place out. It is a working family farm that raises Bison for meat and other products, like leather and bison skulls. The family makes use of all parts of the Bison that they raise. When I arrived I was greeted by Linda Hubalek the proprietor. Linda was a very nice and inviting woman who was very friendly and knowledgeable about all things related to Bison. She is also an accomplished writer and quilter. She has written two series historical fiction books about her family and their travels from Kentucky to Kansas. From the back cover, “In this first book of the Trail of Thread series, in the form of letters she wrote on the journey, Deborah Pieratt describes the scenery, the everyday events on the trail, and the task of taking care of her family…..” Each book in the Trail of Thread series has a companion quilt pattern. On the walls of the visitors center there are a couple of antique quilts that Linda’s family brought with them on their travels. Linda’s series of books can be purchased at her online store www.ButterfieldBooks.com
But back to the Bison. Right now the cows are calving and a few calves have been born already. One cow Ida was out in the field being watched over by the Herd Bull. Linda said that Ida had been struggling all day with the birth, something that is rare because as Linda said the calves usually are born very quickly. Here’s hoping that Ida has a healthy calf. Linda explained how the cows are in one pasture with one Herd bull for the breeding and the young bulls 2+ years are in another pasture and they are the meat bison. At about 2+ years those bulls are slaughtered for meats and other bison products. The visitors center sells bison products as well as Linda’s collection of books and the quilting patterns. I picked up a few gifts while I was there and then I took a number of pictures within the Visitor’s center and then outside I took some more pictures of the bulls. You can order Bison meat from www.BisonFarm.com. And I recommend that if you want to taste some fantastic meat that you place an order. The Smoky Hill Bison Co. also offers visitors a chance to have an evening with the Buffalo, they take a Prairie Tram out into the pasture to spend time with the bison herd. This is limited to 40 people per night and includes a buffalo burger meal. This happens on Saturday evenings during June-August.
After bidding farewell to Linda and the Bison I headed towards Wichita and stopped at Montana Mike’s for lunch. There I ordered a 10oz Buffalo Sirloin. That had to be the most tender and delicious cuts of meat I have ever had. And I usually order items like Filet when I am on the road. This blew that away. Montana Mike’s had a very good steak sauce as well. I practically was able to cut all of the meat with a fork, it was that tender. And it had barely any fat at all. From the 10oz I would say that 9.7oz was meat and 0.3oz was fat. So I may say that I would like some Buffalo meat added to my Guy’s Registry, if anyone is looking for ideas.
Also I have never had to turn my windshield wipers off and on more then driving along I-135 South from Salina to Wichita. I got to see some awesome lightening strikes but no twisters. And that is a good thing because the first thing I saw when I got out of the hotel this morning was a trailer park directly next to the hotel. I dodged one there. While I was typing this the tv was interrupted multiple times to report tornados and hail and major downpours. The weather here has been crazy today. Glad I’m at the hotel near the airport for my drive there tomorrow.
I have to say that Kansas has been a very nice place to visit. The people were very pleasant and the food was great. And I got photos of Buffalo.
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