The sanctuary is located in a canyon formed by the Yakima River, and there is a period each morning when the sun has risen but it has not yet begun to shine directly onto Young’s Hill. In the summer, when temperatures regularly reach into the 90’s or higher, this is the most comfortable time for the chimps to be outside.
This morning, the gang went outside at around 7:45 – all except for Negra, of course. She needs her beauty rest, and she loves when the rowdier chimps leave her alone in the building to sleep in.
But everyone else took to the hill to play and explore. Foxie managed to keep her birthday party going an extra day, because she immediately found an orange that had gone undiscovered in yesterday’s forage.
Burrito followed the girls up the hill, going further than he normally does, all the while holding on to his yellow toy hammer.
Annie sat upon a climbing structure, where she could keep an eye on her friend Missy as she ran around the hill.
Jamie hung out with the other chimps for a while, but eventually she turned to me and gestured to signal that it was time for me to grab a cowboy boot and join her for a walk around the perimeter.
Missy gathered grass from around the bamboo, where it stays lush and green from irrigation.
Jody also gathered grass, which is one of her favorite pastimes, but something was obviously upsetting her.
She approached Missy for reassurance and Missy offered it to her, with all the coolness and confidence of Don Corleone.