Growing up in Colorado, snow was a given. The white stuff falls from the sky at any point between September and sometimes early May. Feet and feet of it are all but inevitable. And sometimes, every few years, the state gets a massive blizzard. Not just “a lot of snow”; we’re talking yards and most of the streets uncrossable without a day pack and a guide. I’ve lived in Los Angeles for 13 years and every time I see the snow levels in my home state, I say “no thank you.” But, with the latest massive blizzard, at least the Denver Zoo gets to show us lions frolicking.
One of the cutest things on the internet is videos of dogs playing in snow for the first time. You never see something so happy. But, had you ever expected to see full-grown African lions behave the same way? It’s a delight. The recent blizzard in the Denver area is the largest in over two decades and dumped 27 inches of snow in the city. More some places. The Denver Zoo, as a result, was closed from Saturday through Monday as they attempted to “dig themselves out.”
In the above video, originally posted to the Zoo’s Facebook page and reposted to local 9News’ YouTube, you can see some of the keepers knocking the snowdrifts down from high places, followed by hyena’s looking profoundly confused. But the lions—of which there appear to be four adult males, which is wild—have great fun having a frolic.
“After our keepers got the lion’s share of a workout making Benson Predator Ridge safe for our lions, hyenas, and African wild dogs,” the Zoo’s Facebook post read, “a couple of our residents felt brave enough to inspect their surroundings…”
“In Africa,” they posted later, “lions spend most of their day trying to find ways to keep cool, so surprisingly, our lions love the snow as they can be as active as they want without overheating! And if they catch a chill, they have heated rocks to lounge on and heated bedrooms waiting when they need them.”
So at the very least, these lions got to have some fun in the snow. They didn’t have to shovel it, so they have definitely got the best end of that deal.