Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Trail Journal: 1

So, I figured that my "Riding Diary" posts have largely become consumed with my lessons, so another type of recording was needed for something that is nearest and dearest to my heart; trail-riding. Honestly, I think I am totally at my happiest when I am plodding along in the middle of nowhere, picking my own path through the deadfall (and in this first installment's case - ice).

So, my "Trail Journal's" will talk about my ride, but will also be more picture-orientated. So here goes:

I got to go for a ride at my beloved ranch. The clouds in this particular photo look particularly ominous, but it was actually a beautiful day.

My equine-partner was Hobo, the owner's relatively green horse. At first I was a little worried about riding this big boy (especially hearing stories of his owner being bucked off in the fall...) but I really had nothing to worry about.

I love this picture because I had gotten off to walk Hobo in an ice-y spot, and his look is just so, "what are we doing up here?! Take me back to my paddock?". Poor boy was absolutely soaked by the time we got home. I discovered Hobo is frightened by puddles... like, I mean, he full out nervous-shook when I walked him through a particularly muddy one... silly, but sooo cute, boy.

In the beginning I had planned to trek to the far lookout, but these photos show that getting there would be a little more treacherous than I would have liked on a day all by myself, on an already soaked and decently nervous horse.

But, fear not! I made it to the close lookout in my travels and took this shot of the spectacular view. My fellow BBJers will know this view well - they will also know that it never gets old, does it? It was interesting to see where certain areas were still bogged down by snow and ice, and where the river was unfreezing.

This is resident ranch-dog Meg, who was so excited to see me, and followed me along the entire way. In the end I was super thankful for her because I had forgotten how still, and often eery, a forest can be. It's been awhile since i'd been on the trail by my lonesome and I started getting jittery feelings, and my mind began wandering to horrible cougars lurking in the trees. Meg eased some of those butterflies in my stomach. (Although, Meg is getting quite old and senile... so, I often wonder how much of a help she would be.)

I love this photo! Meg is waiting for me to throw her a stick and you get a view of the brand new chaps on the first outing! They were absolutely wonderful, I love them.. I don't think I'll take them off this spring/summer. They protected me from some gnarly trees aswell. Hobo thought it would a wonderful idea to bash my knees into quite a few trees, and I was wearing my favourite Wranglers... thankfully, they were saved.

Lookin' good.

I took a break to enjoy the view, and thought Hobo would like a break aswell. He basically stood on top of me the entire time, nervously awaiting my next move.

I love these photos... he took some time to enjoy the view as well. I'm taking these photos from the ground, with my camera above my head.

Absolutely awful photo of me but this horse is just the cutest. He kept putting his head on my shoulder and head while I was sitting down, kind of nagging me to get on and get going, but also in a really cute, cuddly way.

.... don't tell my horse that I was cheating on him please?

The Red Barn at the Ranch. I swear, no matter how many fancy barns I step foot in, the smell and aura of this barn calls me home.

Two new barn kittens on the scene - 6 & 7, named because of their toes... redneck living ya'll.

Hobo... tired, sweaty and not understanding who the heck this lady was that took a pound of winter hair off his body, then jumped on him, forced him up a mountain side, and then took photos of his state afterwards.

All in All I had an absolutely wonderful first ride of the season, and can't wait until the ice melts and I can start exploring all my favourite places again!

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