When most people think of bison, they think of the American West. There's a good reason for that as these massive beasts do call that part of the United States home. But, there's also one place in Missouri where you can also hang out with bison.

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If you haven't visited Prairie State Park, you really need to make time at some point in your life if you have the ability. It's the one place in Missouri you can get up-close-and-personal with one of the biggest land mammals in the world. The bison herd in Prairie State Park really is just a short hike away.

The Missouri State Parks website has some sad statistics about what the state used to be like. They say that "tallgrass prairies once covered more than a third of Missouri; today, less than 1% remains, much of it preserved at Prairie State Park".

The bison herd that roams Prairie State Park is truly wild. They go where they want to go and graze the land as they did 150 years ago. That's one reason you'll want to be extra careful if you decide to see the live. They are unpredictable animals that can weigh up to 2,200 pounds according to the Missouri Department of Conservation website.

Jerry Brooks via YouTube
Jerry Brooks via YouTube

Prairie State Park is in extreme southwestern Missouri right along the Kansas state border to the west of Springfield. It's worth the trip if you'd like to see a little taste of how wild Missouri used to be when these animals used to be native to the Show Me State.

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Special thanks to Grandpa Rich of Thermopolis Wyoming for these photos.

Each morning Grandpa drives up to check on the herd in Hot Springs County Wyoming.

As he drives around he takes photos and sends them to me.

An audience of 1 is not enough.

That's why I'm sharing them with you.

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