Monday, June 18, 2018

Potlatch Canyon Trail

I love riding a new trail. This one is well-kept, easy, and beautiful. I'm sure it gets used a lot more than most of the trails I ride, but we only saw one family hiking. No motorized vehicles allowed, so no ruts!

Sawyer is so good, but he's definitely my horse now. He wanted to follow me to the toilet.

The first mile is paved. Interestingly, Sawyer preferred to stay on the pavement rather than get off to the side. I'm sure without shoes on the story would have been different.

Happy Trails!

Where did the guys go?

Gnarly burl.

Figuring out their GPS. They're getting ready for a trip to Mt. Rainier. Can't be getting lost in a white-out! Although it does make for a funny picture. :)

The Potlatch River

It's hard to see in the picture, but this was kind of a neat tree corridor along the side of the river.

There were some gorgeous meadows I would have spent more time in, but the guys were tired and we were almost back.

My sister gave me these awesome extra long romal reins for my extra long horse. Now I can drop my reins and not lose them. I love them! And riding without reins is so great for my balance and back. I'm not riding lopsided holding the reins in one hand. Of course it's not exactly safe and I wouldn't do this with most horses.

Friday, June 15, 2018

Random Photos

The dogs think family get-togethers are all about them. Winston tries to get in everyone's lap and Huckleberry does a lot of excited screaming and hollering and trying to hold hands until you give him something else to hold on to. Blue came home with Katia for this one but we had to lock him in a bedroom. A fight was imminent.

Sawyer and I tried out my sister's 5 star pad to see if it would help with the saddle slipping back. My sister said it was super grippy. It didn't help with that, but it did help with side to side slippage on rotund Scout. I don't think I'll spend the money to get one though.

Evening on the Palouse. Riding on the road isn't super fun but the view isn't too bad.

My sister's little Jose. He's a good little guy. He sits with my sister all the time. I'm so glad she has him. He's a very good dog, not at all a piranha unless you try to rub her shoulders. Then he has a tiny wrath that's pretty funny.

I almost had a new family member. This little guy on the right, below. We got 10 kittens from the Humane Society to spay and neuter and this one just got my attention from across the room and kept it. Love at first sight, you know. I packed him around for quite a while. They called him Johnny Jump Up. :) It turned out he was the ONLY cat in the group that was already adopted. Poo.
It did get me thinking about another cat though. Our 2 boys moved away to live at the neighbor's and Angel is going to be 14 this year. That's pretty old for a barn cat. Sometime in the next couple years we might need a cat or two. Or maybe a terrier? John really dislikes cats. Hmm.

Saturday, June 09, 2018

Vacation Part 2, and Human Kindness Saves the Day

On our second day at Heyburn we chose to ride some trails that were more level. Sawyer gets tired. Heck, I get tired of going straight up and down.

We had several creek crossings. Scout sure does love water.

At one point our trail on the other side of the creek was blocked by a downed tree. It looked like maybe there was a trail if we crossed under the bridge. It was a big leap of faith for Sawyer.
He had to wait for his eyes to adjust to the shadow under the bridge, and when they did, he thought the boulders under there were monsters!
He made it through for me though, boots deep on a tall horse! What a guy.
Scout plowed through like a cruise ship when it was his turn.

It turns out there was no trail. I had to make one and I bumped into some stinging nettle on just one finger in the process. I should have rinsed it off right away but it didn't seem that bad. That night it was blistered and the next day it itched like crazy up past my wrist.

We had a day of rest the next day, and good thing too because I spent the entire day in bed with a migraine. None of my drugs really helped. Botox is a wonder treatment but it doesn't stave them off completely.

On Thursday we rode out on an easy trail. A short ride so we could get back and fish with my sister.

Scout would have kept going forever once we got back to his favorite meadow. :)

Fishing gave me another headache - too much heat and light on the water, but we all caught our limits. My sister caught two huge ones!

Today, alas... Today has not gone as planned but it is actually going quite well even with the catastrophic failure of the truck, with the horses in the trailer, in the middle of nowhere with no cell service.

The drain plug (there's probably a real name for it) for the oil popped out of the truck on our way to ride. Happily, it happened right where a very nice man was putting in a new fence post for his corral for his range cattle. Turns out he grows hay on my road, but he also owns this beautiful big piece of property way out here. He saved our bacon. Gave us a corral for the horses, John a ride back to town, and I'm sitting next to a sweetly babbling creek in the glorious shade typing this note for future insertion into my blog.
Could a disaster be much better? Now we just need the truck to start back up and function fine.

I could even go for a nice ride while I wait. There's a trail to Bald Mountain from here, the nice man said.

Now it's the next day, and this blog entry is getting super duper long, I know. The truck did start right up, and we did have a nice ride.

Friday, June 08, 2018


We're not actually going anywhere on vacation. I love where I live, no need to leave. :)

We spent a couple days at home, getting some housework done, playing with ducks, you know, the usual. 

Then we went for a one night camping trip at Heyburn State Park. I love their corrals.

This is my favorite kind of red, white, and blue:
Day 2 to follow. I just can't seem to find time to blog with all this vacationing going on!

Monday, May 28, 2018

Ass backwards, and Love at First Sight

After feeding supplements yesterday I needed to clean out the trailer. Juniper wanted attention so I brought her along. We practiced trailer loading. She's only hauled loose or in the last stall of the trailer, never between dividers. Understandably, she isn't comfortable with being wedged up into the front corner. But she would stand there backwards. So I shut the divider and praised her to high heaven while she stood there, very uncomfortable with the whole situation.
I kept it short and sweet and then let her out. I call it a win if she doesn't get so worried she poops, and she didn't. :)

We ended up going on a llloooonnng ride yesterday. Nine miles up toward Prospect Peak out by Gold Hill. It's a really nice ride. We walked over a third of it to give the horses a break.
While we were riding I was wondering, Why did I feel safe with Sawyer right off the bat when I met him? (This is the love at first sight portion of the post.) Like when you meet some people, you just click with them right away and want to be around them more. Why? I've had one theory, that time isn't linear, and that we recognise people we know, before we know them. Also, I believe in reincarnation and knowing people from other lifetimes. But then there's the scientific theory, that our subconscious mind picks up on cues our conscious mind does not. I certainly had enough time to observe Sawyer being brought in and tacked up, to form a subconscious opinion. I climbed on him in less than ideal tack without even asking the owner to ride him first.

Whatever the reason I liked him then, I'm glad I found him. I only wish I'd found him several years sooner so I could love him longer.

Scout and John are sure making a good team too. I like riding with my husband. We both like to explore. I never have to worry that I'm taking him too far or into too hairy of a situation. He's always game for whatever I am. 
Actually I was the one who had to call it yesterday and say it was time to turn back. My old man horse was tired. We were exploring this nice grassy road that had a cool breeze blowing up out of the cedars. I half expected a wolf to trot by any minute, it was so quiet out there.
We dismounted and walked the last 3 miles. I think the horses appreciated it. My butt didn't mind either. :)

They are very good boys. They get the next few days off, for sure.

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Lovely, lovely

We have been having all the fun lately. Lovely weather. Sunshine, but lots of thunderstorms and rain too. Not our normal springtime weather but still mostly quite nice. And I do love a good storm.

Juniper went for her first hike out on the trail. I chose a spot with easy, open trails where I don't usually see anyone or hear any guns or anything. This time though, a family was walking by on the county road below us, with really loud kids, and Juniper was sure they were following us and definitely going to eat us up.

We saw a porcupine waddling into the brush. Super cute! After that she started to relax a bit. Up on top we saw some deer run off. I tried to get a good pic with the wildflowers.  She was still watching for deer.

Toward the end of the hike she started to relax and get more curious about her surroundings, smelling things and occasionally tasting them. That made me happy. I was afraid she wasn't going to come down off high alert.  I really should have brought another equine along. But I didn't have another person available.

The next day I decided to try Scout out with a new rider. Heather from work has been riding all her life but not exactly a horseman. I was pretty sure it would go well or I wouldn't have tried it of course. I figured if he was too naughty we could turn it into a hike. He was perfect! 

We rode to the top of a little mountain and back, and as we were unsaddling we heard wolves howling in the distance! How cool is that!

I finally got my friend Cindee out on the trail again. She rode her good horse, Trixie. When she told me she hasn't done anything at all with her this spring I was a little unsure what to expect, but Trixie was a good girl. If ever I was looking for a Morgan horse, I'd want one with her breeding.

We rode along the Palouse river on the Colfax trail. It's beautiful. There are stretches with pine trees, and I love the rocks covered with swallow's nests.

The river is right on the other side of the trail, running deep and muddy right now.

We rode up above for a view of the river. Sawyer just looked and looked. It was really cute.

Heather and I did another after work ride on Friday. We had a couple of minor mishaps that could have been worse.  Scout's saddle rolled as she was mounting up and she ended up going thud on the ground practically underneath him. I was picturing shod hooves jumping away and hurting her, but no, he just stood there like this sort of thing happens every day. No concern at all. Like, not even curiosity. It was kinda funny. Luckily she landed in soft forest duff and just got back on.

Huckleberry got to go with us. He was soooo happy!

On the way back we went through a ditch/hump combo meant to keep trucks out, and Scout must have tried to jump the ditch, landed on his knees on the hump, and gave Heather quite the ride. What a dork.

Yesterday I got to ride with my husband! Imagine that. We went way into the deep, dark woods. Normally we don't see anyone out there but since it's memorial day weekend we saw 3-4 groups on atv's. They were all really respectful, and there was plenty of room to get off the trail before they came around the corner.
 We didn't make it as far as we wanted to. The trails were so greasy and slick it was a bit scary sometimes. These shoes are nowhere near as good as barefoot, but even then we would have had trouble. One spot where I was walking, I fell and was lucky I was able to get back up at all. I had absolutely no purchase. I grabbed a tree and managed to get my knee on the side of the trail. That's about where we turned back. :)

My boys are pretty cute.

I just put down my reins at the end and figured Sawyer would park at the trailer, but he passed it and kept going up the road! I guess he's turning into an adventurer.
We're planning on going out again today. Probably somewhere flat and easy. Lovely day for it!