Ah, the Saturday morning before our parents arrive and that peaceful feeling of "AAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHH! MOM AND DAD ARE COMING TOMORROW." *Cough, cough* is in the air. The donks are braying for their breakfasts, ye olde Fred is busy with Sundance, and Fifteen is standing next to the catchpen while everyone runs around putting on cowboy boots and prepping for a nice ride in the neighbor's hay field.
Since the V had asked the R if one would like to join the V, A and D for a ride and the R had said "Sure". Everybody was in hustle and panic mode.
After gathering four leads and halters the wonderful catching of ye olde Fred, ye younger Mica, ye even younger Sunshine and ye youngest Siera. Then comes the fun part of tying everyone to the trailer and...
Brushing them out.
Oh wait, we can't start just yet! Sundance decided to crunch the top of the catch pen! Now how did she think she could jump that five foot high fence of rails? On to the naughty tree you go!!
*An hour and a half [or so] later*
Bridles, check (yes! Got Siera's on myself!), saddles, check, helmets, check, pants,check, Dennis, check.
Up, up, up the driveway we go and cya later, Sundance!! Have fun on the naughty tree!!
(If you look carefully next to the catchpen (not the crunched one) you should be able to make out Sundance. That is why the picture is blown up so big.)
Onto the hay field we are.
We rode for a few minutes then discovered Scrawny (Dennis) cannot sit straight in the saddle unless you get after him...A lot....Also discovered he sits back too far in the saddle when trying to get Fred's head up when he's trying to eat. (Le sigh.)
After we got the 'minor details' out of the way, we had a grand old time. After riding the hay field in full, it was high time we went home and got lunch after putting everyone away!
Or so I thought.
We came home and I started taking Siera's tack off when Grandma comes around the corner and goes: "Nu uh! Hang Siera's bridle on her saddle horn, we're going to eat then head out again without the boys."
...OK, sure, why not? We have an afternoon to kill, Grandpa's going to sleep anyway. So suuuuuuurrrrrre!!!!!
*Boring lunch sequence, watches Fred and Sunshine get put up, yada, yada, yada.*
"We're going down through the soybeans and into the woods, K?"
Little did I know, we were not just going down to the creek and back, oh no. We were going down to the back valley.
(Face of someone who didn't know we were going all the way back to the back valley.)
We rode down the ridge road and down next to the creek where we went left instead of right, hmm, I'm getting the sneaky suspicion this is going to be a longer ride today.
Going left we encountered the 'dreaded' creek, Grandma made Mica cross instantly while Siera...Stopped. Decided 'nope, not today' and I spun her in a half circle and made her try again.
"Ooh! You are not going to make me cross the creek? Sure! We can go home!"
"Don't let her go home!"
Spun her around again and tapped her on the sides and told her she would be fine. "Nope. Nada, zilch. Forget it! Not today! Not today!"
Next thing I know Grandma and Mica have crossed again (note: Mica doesn't like it either, but she still did it) and Grandma is doing everything she can to help without tying Mica up.
"I don't see any trees closeby I can tie her too."
So we kept working on Siera and I ended up in another spot entirely then...
"Keep her going! Keep her going!!"
She crossed but we ended up only halfway. Grandma hollering instructions and telling us to keep riding right. Sure. I can do that. Gets in knee deep mud for Siera. *Insert loud sucking noise and Grandma spins around in the saddle thinking Siera fell*
We walk up close and I nod. We keep going. However we had to bust brush as the weeds and Wild (dead) Parsnip were up really tall. Mica put her head to the side and walked forward, while Siera plowed through like it was nobody's business.
Sweet. We got through. Now what? More snowmobile trail? Sure!! Uphill? Why not?
We rode up through the woods and then we came to a cornfield. Can you say 'middle of nowhere?' I sure could! (I honestly had no idea where we were besides that we weren't too, too close to Awesome Creek anymore, I vaguely had a sense of where to go if I needed to get back myself though.)
(Note: While we were riding up said woods all of the sudden whoosh! We are in a hole and stumbling out.
"Oh yeah, watch out for the hole."
So helpful indeed.)
We came to another mysteriously hidden trail head and were traveling downhill again. How nice it was to look down and see a really wicked steep looking drop off and seeing dirt and water below.
We rode until we came to a downed tree, we found a trail through the underbrush and went around it. Then we came to the ice cave. We stopped (first previous photo) and let our mules rest.
"Check your gear, ...Oh look at your pants."
I do not wear jeans so I had a bunch of those icky green things stuck to my hems. Eww. (Took an hour and a half to get those things off.) Time to consider a pair of jeans…
We headed back and no one had any problems. Siera crossed the creek without issues in round two and we headed back home.
We stopped at the head of the driveway to dismount and walk down the steep part of the driveway. It took two attempts for me to get out of the saddle. (That was my longest ride to date.) We walked back, tied Siera and Mica to the trailer and that was that.
What a nice Saturday afternoon.