So... June has arrived!! Which means I get to go back to my ranch to work in the spring before camp starts. Of course, my mind was only on one thing - bringing my horse in. I'm sure i've discussed this before, but the string is sent to winter pasture elsewhere, then brought back, and kicked out on the back 1800 acres before summer starts. Sure enough, baby Jingle was sent out with the rest of them... sigh. They all need to come in, in two weeks anyways... but, I want my pony - NOW!
So, with only one saddle horse available - Butterfly, a very old, pretty unattractive mare, that I have never paid much attention too - I headed out to find my horse in the wild blue yonder. I was actually pleasantly surprised with Butterfly, she walked out really nice, was responsive, rarely kicked up a fuss... gold star.
We headed up the Little Red Deer River, checking in on all the usual spots for where the horses could be. Here we are meandering up a clear cut that exits on to some areas horses are known to graze.
We headed to the "Far Lookout" and I hoped off to give her a break to munch some grass, while I surveyed the flats below. I was pretty shocked to find absolutely no horses on the far flats, usually the bigger herd hangs out here.
Here I am, still optimistic.
We came across Billy, and Charlie, our percheron team, and some of the younger stock.
Here's one of our Belgians, Luke.
I find it really cute the Heavy Horses had taken it upon themselves to "babysit" our little ones. Here are two long-yearlings, getting pretty close to Butterfly and I.
A third decided to come see what we were up too.
The tovero filly followed us for about ten minutes, until she stopped to watch us go. She's quite the looker, really flashy in a bit of a different way. By the way - all these babies are for sale!
A storm was approaching from the North-West... we carried onwards.
... Clearing... No horses.
We found Mac, Rapper and Ballet... still no Jingle.
Mac, the anglo-arab bay, took it upon himself to try to get with Butterfly. Manners Mac! By this time Butterfly was quite tired, and I knew it was time to head home... with Jingle nowhere to be found.
Sunday morning came, can you see resident grandfather Tad waiting for his daily bucket of beet pulp?
I love him quite a bit... such a good horse.
Sunday I seemingly found all the same horses as I had the previous day, just in different areas. I came across a couple others, but no Jingle. Poor Butterfly was worn out, and I made her work pretty hard for her supper, I felt a little guilty. I think Jingle must be with the larger herd, and I think I had found where they had been a day or two earlier, but I couldn't find where there tracks were heading. I rode home pretty sore - 7 hours in the saddle, and pretty sad. I really miss my horse, and I would have really liked to see him this weekend.
However - I made a new horsie friend. Butterfly sure is a good little mare, and I'm sad I've neglected to notice how special she is all these years. The only memory of her that sticks out in my mind is when a young boy from Japan came to camp... not only did he let Butterfly out of her box stall one day, she paraded around the barn, but she also dumped his poor bum in the river one day. Can't you see that wicked little glint in her eye? haha. I'd be happy to ride her again.
... but, i'd rather ride my baby.
Where are you Jingle? :(