Thursday, May 3, 2018


Where to take the Spring dragon horse today? The sun was shining, the horse was shining, there were no trail races planned, we had all the options. But I had training in mind: mental training. So we rode from home, always a more difficult choice,

Spring dragon horse
Heading out, the trail goes though a very squishy marsh area. It takes until at least June for this area to dry out. We were startled by a flapping of wings, a hawk on the ground! Oh no, was he hurt? I stopped Major and just watched the hawk, he appeared stunned, but managed to climb onto a low branch. I decided to wait to call bird rescue if the hawk was still there when we returned.

The green is overwhelming the trail right now. I turned a corner, onto a section we call rattlesnake gulch (there was once a rattlesnake there, we're not that creative) and we could barely see the trail! In a few places Major was a bit nervous, you couldn't see past the wall of green!

wall of green in rattlesnake gulch

But we headed down the trail, trotting but not silly, then we climbed the hill, his happy hill, where he took in the view. He loves climbing that hill, it is an old road, with dirt and crumbling, rutted asphalt surface, that goes nowhere (dead-ends in a fancy house). But he always pulls to go there, and occasionally he gets to choose!

taking in the view

Then we got to the beach, and there was lupine! I had thought it was all under water, so Major had to stand while I tried to take pictures. That was less than successful, so then we had a standing lesson (but not while was trying to take photos!). He didn't want to rush home, he wanted to rush out to the lake! But he did not get to go in the water at that point.

lupine ahead
oh so lovely

We continued, seeing no one else. No runners, no hikers, no fishermen at Avery Pond. But we did get to see, and hear, the fist pissed off rattlesnake of the year! The snake was sprawled across the trail, then crawled into the bushes, rattling away, as we came by. Always cautious, but the snakes that warn us are the safer ones!

leftover trail ribbon, and the snake was just ahead!

Across the bridge of death, with rushing waters, and finally a hiker! The canyon trail opened up with river in full view, beckoning. But it was about time to turn around, Major was losing hope we'd ever get home, and 85 degrees was feeling way too hot. Was it time for the battle/conversation/who is more determined to begin?

I'm not posing for any more stupid flower photos

and miles to go before I sleep...

A little. Major's intention is to trot as fast as possible for home. (well, anywhere for that matter). My intention was to have his brain join his feet. And I think it was successful! After a previous frustrating ride, this was much less so! A few circles, backing, remembering that's I'm up here moments, and I had a fast, but rateable, horse. The rateable part, that is the momentous moment. Major sure doesn't make anything easy. (We won't discuss right now that two days later I had another ridiculous ride, sigh, it's all training)

We walked (also amazing, not jigging!) back the last mile, and through the marshy area. I got off and looked everywhere for the hawk, but I didn't see or hear him. I hope he just had a bad moment and was back soaring. Maybe for us all.

good hair day, playing in the river


  1. That water is sooooo blue!

    Why do you think it's easier to trailer out rather than to ride out from home? Curious.

  2. At least with Major, he loves going anywhere, and he is surprisingly well behaved. I think because he isn't quite sure where we're going!

    At home, he always knows at some point we are going home. (As I've never just left him in the forest, no matter how tempted I've been!). And also at some point the "I'm going home" mode clicks in, and he wants to rush. It doesn't matter if I work him at home, or tie him and let him chill after, I've tried it all. So instead, I try to plan my rides to have enough time to deal with the silly and not let him get away with it!

    I do think it is funny to see when his "going home" mode will kick in. I swear he knows the exact halfway point, even if it's a loop trail! We have a lot of options on home trails, so are very lucky.