On this date in 1876, the Centennial State was admitted to the union, becoming this great nation’s 38th state. It is, to me, very fitting to have the Bighorn Sheep as Colorado’s official animal. Just like the terrain and many of its people, these animals are very rugged, strong and tough.
The animal is found in many places in the state’s high country. Diseases from European livestock and overhunting had caused the animal’s population to drop precipitously by the early 1900s. Thankfully conservation efforts have been successful in helping the sheep rebound since then.
This particular ram was lounging near the top of Trail Ridge Road last August.