Friday, August 28, 2015

Still in Hibernation

Hibernation:  A state of inactivity and metabolic depression.

Life is really a Catch 22 in the desert in the summer months.  You try to wait out the heat so that you can be active outdoors again, and when a storm moves in that brings cooler temperatures and a nice wind, you can't go out anyway because of the lightning.

Yesterday we had a storm move through that technically missed my area, but was close enough for me to benefit from the cooler air.  I had such a strong desire to hike out into the desert on the trails due to cabin fever that I just went without thinking about it, but before I reached the trail head, lightning struck just in front of me.  I quickly turned around and scurried back indoors.

Now we are back to the usual blinding sun and heat.  I feel like I've just been passing the time until September, which is the first month that promises more bearable temperatures, at least at night.  If we can get it to cool down at night, then early morning horseback rides are in order.

My goal is to start riding as soon as the temperatures, my health, and my schedule allow, to try to get everyone tuned up before all my neighbors and the snowbirds begin utilizing the trails.  My riding has been sporadic in the spring and summer.  We had incredible weather last spring with winter extending itself out rather than summer encroaching too soon.  I felt so fortunate until the power company took over my riding haunts and turned what used to be pleasant jaunts on horseback into horror stories for my horses, which jeopardized my safety.  I suspect everyone felt the same because I didn't see anyone else out there riding their horses amongst the construction and upgrades.

I also want to fit in some arena riding while the house next door is still vacant, although my neighbor should be returning to do some maintenance and repairs as soon as the temperatures cool down.  The storms kept doing damage to their house and things finally got too complex for me to fix myself.  Patching leaks in roofs and repairing plaster are not in my skill set.  I was starting to get scared, because literally everything I touched instantly fell apart, so each time my neighbor called me and gave me some assignments to do over at her place, I got stressed out because I knew I'd just end up creating more work for myself by either stumbling upon more broken stuff or breaking it myself by breathing on it.

I just want a few rides in the arena and on the trails where my horses and I can go back to basics without distractions, and then I can start working on getting my horses to focus on me once people move in next door and begin frequenting the bridle trails.  But I know there are a lot of other horseback riders and hikers and bicyclists who are anxious to get out just as much as I am.  I know they are already taking their chances in the early mornings and late evenings, because I've seen my horses crowd together at the corner of the paddock to watch horses go past on the trails in the distance.  I expect the trails to be even more crowded this year because new housing has been going up all around us.  Neighbors who owned several acres parceled them out, and as a result, the population here is increasing faster than I'd like.

In the meantime, I've been collecting photos of weird cloud formations.  This one looks like a bomb went off on the other side of the mountains...

This one looks like a volcano erupting...

This one looks like a party for a variety of clouds...


6 comments:

Cheryl Ann said...

I hear you about the temps. This is something I believe only desert dwellers fully understand. It was 113 here yesterday and today will be about the same. That means I have to run my errands early in the morning, or NOT AT ALL! Who wants to be out in 113 degree weather? ...shudder...
Cheryl Ann

How Sam Sees It said...

I've been lucky enough to get Baron out in the mornings and am still managing to ride 2-3 times a week. We aren't doing anything impressive, it's more to get the big guy out and keep his mind sharp. The other horses all have the summer off. Right now we can ride until 7 before it gets too uncomfortable, but I'm up and out there by 4 most mornings. :(

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

Sam - You'll have to explain the logistics of that to me some time. Do you ride with a flashlight when the full moon isn't out? Or do you ride in a lighted area before the sun comes up? And how can you even wake up that early??? Does Baron do well being ridden before being fed? I know that would be a challenge with my horses. I try to avoid late afternoon rides, because the horses get so anxious about dinner time and start acting up.

How Sam Sees It said...

He does! If he sees me taking out his saddle he quits eating. All of my horses actually do that, although I'm not sure how that came about. They want to be ridden and prefer coming out over being left behind. The only two I don't ride are the two mares that share a pen - I don't want the one left behind to eat more than her ration. Baron is the worst of them. If he sees me taking out another horse, he doesn't eat until I'm home. I feed everyone just to keep them quiet, so the horse I'm riding always knows the others are eating. They never want to rush home either to get back to their food. I've given Baron his head going to the gate and he just walks past it and keeps going. I try to saddle in the dark, using either a flashlight or my headlights. Haha - I've come home a few times and have realized just how terrible I am at brushing black horses out in the dark. I've ridden in the dark too with and without a flashlight, which can be scary, but I try to stick to either roads or the path near my Mom's house that they know well. I've seen more wildlife this way than ever - bobcat, mountain lion, a badger believe it or not... I have to rely on them to keep me safe from the critters and the odd person walking in the dark. As for waking up early - my headache does that to me so I just take advantage of it. I'm up most mornings around 3. ;)

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

Sam - All of that is fascinating. Your world is so different from mine. I wish you didn't have to deal with those headaches.

achieve1dream said...

Those pictures are awesome!!

I pretty much hibernate in the summer too. I'm just not a morning person and it's no fun if I have to wake up before dawn just to ride. In the evenings if it's cool enough there's always clouds of mosquitoes. So yeah... I ride in the fall and spring and a little in the winter lol. Not too good for Chrome's fitness level, but I ride for fun, not to be miserable or unsafe. *shrug*