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The two RV Gypsies at
Head-Smashed-in Buffalo Jump
World Heritage Site
in Alberta, Canada
June 3, 2016

Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump World Heritage Site in Alberta Canada, is possibly the oldest, largest and best preserved of the many buffalo jump sites across the Western Plains. This site preserves and interprets the significance of an ancient communal hunting ground used by the Plains People for nearly 6,000 years. Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump was designated a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1981.

loacion of Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump Buffalo Jump sign

history bookAccording to one of the Blackfoot oral traditions, a very young boy wanted to witness the plunge of countless buffalo as his people drove them over the sandstone cliff. Standing under the shelter of a ledge, he watched the great beasts fall past. The hunt was unusually good that day. As the bodies mounted, the child became trapped between the animals and the cliff. When his people came to do the butchering, they found the child with his skull crushed by the weight of the buffalo carcasses.

This is why they named the buffalo jump Head-Smashed-In.unhappy face

Head-Smashed-in Buffalo Jump sign Head-Smashed-in Buffalo Jump Interpretive Center

Below: Head-Smashed-in Buffalo Jump Interpretive Center shown from a distances and at the entry.

Head-Smashed-in Buffalo Jump Interpretive Center Head-Smashed-in Buffalo Jump Interpretive Center entry

importantThis is page one - Inside The Interpretive Center where the two RV Gypsies spent about 1-1/2 hours on a self-guided tour of the exhibits before going outside (which is page two on this site and can be reached through the link at the bottom of this page). Note: The two RV Gypsies did not eat any Buffalo served here or anywhere else.

Head-Smashed-in Cafe menu sign celebrating passion, pride in Alberta

Below: Three of the many Blackfoot Legend Paintings done by school children, as explained in the sign below.

sign about Blackfoot Legend Paintings Blackfoot Legend Painting by school children
Blackfoot Legend Painting by school children Blackfoot Legend Painting by school children
location map for Buffalo Jump

Below: The 3-section photo shown below was actually a video screen where a movie was showing about the ancient buffalo hunting culture and how the Plains People survived for more the 5,000 years before the arrival of the Europeans. It was really cool to watch because the pictures moved from left to right across the 2-section screen.

big movie screen

The Interpretive Center had buffaloes on the carpet and informative signs everywhere.

inside The Interpretive Center buffalo carpeting

Signs and movies explained about the delicate ecology of the Northwestern Plain, the geography, climate and vegetation of the region, plus the lifestyle of the early Plains People, their rich culture including food gathering, ceremonies and family life.

sign about the Great Plaines of North America
signs about animals on the Plains photo of animals on the Plains
interpretive sins about the Northwest Plains sign about Head-Smashed In
sign: The Shaping of Head-Smashed-in Buffalo Jump sign about Napi's rolling rodk
sign about stron westerly winds signs about strong Medicine
sign about spring vegetation sign about autumn

Information was even displayed via lighting on big rocks throughout the Interpretive Center. Sometimes the words fell off the surface of the rock and could not be read.

sign about summer Home days are coming sign

Below: A full size tipi (teepee) on the first floor, and a replica of a tall cliff with some buffalo on top of the cliff about to fall off to their death.

sign about the Tipi - teepee replica of the Buffalo Jump

Below: Buffalo on top of the cliff as seen from the first floor of the Interpretive Center, and as seen from the second floor.

replica of the Buffalo Jump replica of the Buffalo Jump
look below

go to the next adventure of the two RV Gypsies Please continue on to page 2 of Head-Smashed-in Buffalo Jump - OUTSIDE GROUNDS and the jump area.