Saturday, July 31, 2010

Saturday Morning Trail Ride

I knew this was going to be a busy weekend, so on impulse I loaded Lostine up in the horse trailer first thing Saturday morning to head off for the canyon. She's getting so much better about allowing herself to be caught, standing still for me while I put on her boots, and not kicking and pawing the in the trailer.

I would have liked to have taken Bombay, but the cut on the ball of his ankle keeps breaking open and bleeding. I want it to be fully healed before trailering him anywhere.

Lostine and I met two teenage boys with a GPS and compass who were lost. I gave them directions to where they needed to go. There were a lot of teenagers heading off on hikes in small groups, so I suspect some kind of organization was having a get together on the peak.

I met up with joggers and told them that I find it so amazing that they can jog the mountain trails. I hike up a pretty steep incline for the first half-mile and I'm out of breath by the time I reach the bench that I mount from. They said it is hard and they usually walk up and jog down.

When Lostine and I entered a deeply wooded area and stopped to rest in the shade, I heard a low growl and looked around, but didn't see any movement in the bushes or trees.

I'm a little more wary about trail riding so deep in the Sierra now, because when I was at the vet's office they had a bunch of pictures on display of dogs who had been bit by rattlesnakes. I've always been told there are no rattlesnakes in our area. I guess I was told wrong, so now I have to keep an eye out for them while trail riding and hiking.

Also, I saw a TV show in which a man was ambushed by a mountain lion. The amount of damage that mountain lion did to his head in just a few seconds was staggering. The man ended up being able to pull his knife out of his boot and slash the mountain lion's throat, but he ended up having to get his scalp and ear sewn back on, and is now without an eye. I know we have mountain lions and bears down here in the valley. Sometimes the mountain lions get up on people's roofs.

So, after hearing the growl and studying the trees, I moved Lostine further down the mountain. We stopped again and I heard that low growl again. "Is a bear stalking us?" I wondered. I didn't smell anything to suggest that a large animal was around and Lostine wasn't nervous.

We moved even further down the mountain, stopped in some shade and there was that low growl again, only this time I pinpointed where it was coming from: Lostine's hungry belly! Ha ha.

These are some of the reasons why I like to ride this trail system:

No motorized vehicles and signs that educate visitors:

It was a good thing I went trail riding this morning instead of waiting for Sunday, because when I got home I found out that we will be having unexpected guests visiting over the next few days.


Breathe said...

What a beautiful place to ride and it's great to see that it's so well suited for horses.

It's always a good thing to get a ride in before the world encrouches.

fernvalley01 said...

Sounds like another good ride. And I am glad the growling was just your own beast!

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

Grrrrr......feed me. lol! That cracked me up. I'm glad it wasn't a lion or bear, though.

Hmmm....unexpected guests? Sounds like some really good blog fodder.


Crystal said...

That looks like such a nice trail and its nice to ride where there are no vehicles allowed and people are edicated about horses.

The growling made me laugh too!

Anonymous said...

LOL @ the ferocious growling tummy! Glad it wasn't a big cat or a bear.

I'm envious of that trail! We have a "multi-user" trail nearby that is open to horses too, but THEY PAVED IT! WTF?

Good for you taking Saturday by the horns and getting your ride in first!

Ms Martyr said...

This story made me laugh. Glad it was just Lostine's stomach growling.
I can hardly handle invited guests, much less unexpectes ones.

Stephanie said...

I am just catching up on my reading... and 1. am so sorry about having to put your dog down! A hard choice but the right one. 2. I am aghast at how the employees at the clinic treated you. just made me so mad to read about it!!! and 3. I am very happy that you got a chance to go out with Lostine on a beautiful morning trail ride. You certainly deserved it!