Monday, May 25, 2015

I fixed it!!!!!

My computer, that is.

I haven't been able to download pics from the camera for two months and kept meaning to take the thing in to the repair shop and let them fix it.  This morning I decided to give it a go and with the help of some kind soul on the HP bulletin board was able to fix  it :)

Now, I have several months to catch up on!

Cartman and I hauled over to Prineville for a clinic with Celena Pentrack in March.  It was a blast!  I just love going over there- I think its one of the most beautiful places ever. 

It was an intense couple of days and we worked all day both days!  Cartman definitely needed the refresher course in good ground manners... actually I think I'm the one who needed it, he behaves very well when I handle him consistently. 

The first day we got so busy that we worked right through lunch and didn't even stop until 3pm.  I got up at 3:30am had hauled over morning of so was pretty tired by the end of that day.

We did mounted work in the afternoon and a lot of centered riding stuff that is very useful.  Celena is a great instructor- she explains things so that they make sense! Instead of just telling you what to do ex. "heels down" she will show you how the different leg position affects your whole position on the horse, and what that does to how the horse moves! Fascinating stuff. 

We did one particularly surprising exercise in which we were mounted and she led our horse in a circle while we closed our eyes.  Would you believe that every person ended up leaning to the outside??  It was really strange.  I am actually still digesting little bits and pieces of info that we learned that weekend.  Some things take time to sink in, especially stuff that you can't just think through logically. 

On Sunday we did a trail ride and practiced leapfrogging, leaving other horses, getting left by other horses, etc.  Cartman was a rock star on the way out and a real brat on the way back.  He kicked out at another horse and was just a pill.  I finally got off and ended up leading him most of the way down the hill.  It was still really fun though.  I got to see Ponderosa Pines... hard to beat that.

I  am very excited to be going back for another clinic in June!!!

I had planned on going to Grizzly and making that our first ride this year.  Sadly I was unable to get there again this year.  Cartman had a shoeing appointment the week before our clinic and I was going to get his pads put on at that appointment.  He did OK with just shoes while we were just doing 3-5 miles and mostly on the jogging path.  But, I've noticed that he just doesn't move with as much confidence out on the real trail without the pads.

Anyway, this shoeing appointment came up on a day that was just crappy at work.  I was totally stressed by the time I got home to meet Gary and it was cold and grey out.  It turns out that my shoer had been sick for almost a week and this was his first day back to work.  It was late in the afternoon and the thought of us standing out there for hours (yes it does take hours to do Cartman's feet) was just the last straw.  I felt tired, I felt bad for my shoer- and I decided to just reset Cartman'sThe shoes.

We went to the clinic and all was well, then did a few rides at home, still OK.  Then went out for 16 miles one day and he just felt hesitant.  When we got home I didn't turn him out but left him up in the dry lot (he's getting a bit chunky on the grass).  When I went out to feed several hours late he had a little filling in the fronts legs????

This has never happened before, even doing 50 miles and being Hi-Tied to the trailer.

After my original freak out, I pulled him out of the paddock, cold hosed and applied Ice Tight to his legs.  The filling came down almost immediately. So, I think it was just a combination of the 16 miles on rather hard ground, the lack of his cushioning pads, and him standing in one spot instead of meandering around grazing like he normally does after a ride.

I did get his pads back on a week before Mt. Adams and he is totally back to normal now.

I hauled over to Mt Adams on Friday morning.  The sky was gloomy and it even rained on us a bit going through the gorge. Thankfully it was clear when we pulled into the horse camp, although it was extremely windy!

I set up camp and got signed in then took C over for vet in.  Due to yet another EHV-1 scare they were taking temps at the vet check.  I actually think this is a great idea, it makes me feel better about letting my horse drink from a communal trough anyway.

By the time I got done and back to the trailer Michelle was pulling in with Cinnamon.  She parked next door and we got her all checked in as well.

Ride meeting was about 7pm I think, I don't remember too much about it so it must have been pretty uneventful :)

We were up at 6am on Saturday for an 8am start.  I didn't sleep very well Friday nite, the wind just kept blowing and I heard C on the Hi-Tie all night moving around trying to stretch it out to graze.

After we saddled I decided to put C on the lunge for a minute to get any kinks out and see how he was moving.

We walked a bit away from the trailer and he was goofing off and playing a bit.  I looked down for a second to fiddle with the line and the next thing I knew he had thrown some monster bucks and gotten the line under his belly.  Crap.  I tried WHOA. but it didn't work.  He pulled the line away and took off across the ravine at a dead run. 

He veered over towards the actual horse camping area and a dog came out and started chasing him.  I was running as fast as I could through the field trying to keep track of him and yelling Loose Horse!!!!!

To my horror he circled back and headed right for the middle of ride camp at full TB speed, and towing a 60 ft lunge line behind him.  I'm glad this all happened quickly so I didn't have time for it to really sink in.  I turned and started to follow him.  I could see him head into camp and turn down the middle road.  By the time I got close to the trailers he had made a full circle and gone right back to his trailer.

Whew.  Michelle grabbed the rope and I caught up just as a few men came running up to help.  I asked if everyone was OK and they said yes.  Thank God.

C seemed a little shaken but secretly I think he enjoyed it a bit.  I let him jog for a second on the line to make sure we weren't going to have any lasting troubles being lunged then we mounted up and let the horses graze for a bit while the front runners left camp.

Cartman and Cinnamon did a relaxed walk out of camp and we finally got to the actual trail head only to run into riders on foot that had lost two horses!

We headed down the trail and were cautiously watching for loose horses- then picked up a nice jog after a bit.  They two travel well together and Cinnamon was handling things well at her first ride!

At this ride I realized that Cartman has developed some new skills on the trail.  He watches and stays on the trail without any guidance from me.  That is pretty cool, because when he was younger he would occasionally just walk off into the brush if I wasn't paying attention.

The other thing, he balances himself on the terrain without me asking him to.  I usually fall back to walk when we head downhill or hit a rocky patch.  Cartman is doing this without being asked- and the really cool thing?  He picks up an energetic trot when the footing is clear!

I guess some might see that as a fault, that he wants to go w/o me asking for it, but I like it.  All I have to do is pick up on the rein and he will fall back to walk so I don't think he's being pushy or anything.

We had a great ride on this first loop and got to go through an area that burned a few years ago.  When we were about 4 miles out of camp we hit a long section of logging road.  We walked and walked, then decided to carefully trot a section that looked pretty good.  Unfortunately  there was a rock up there with Cinn's name on it and she took a few bobble steps.  Crap.  We walked the rest of the way to the trail but as soon picked up a jog Michelle noticed she was off.

We tried walking a ways but every time we'd try to trot she would take a few questionable steps here and there.  We ended up walking back into camp certain that she would get pulled.

Cartman and I made it through and when I got back over to the road Michelle said that the vet couldn't see anything wrong and that she was fit to continue!

We headed back to the trailer so the horses could eat.  As usual I didn't have enough time and ended up late back to start.

Before mounting up Michelle jogged Cinn and she had a slight head bob. Uh oh.  She decided to go back to the vet and RO.  Cartman and I headed out of camp at a jog with 13 miles to go.

C was a beast!!!! He seemed to be having a good time and was really forward.  We were tracking  grey arab through the woods that was pretty fast.  We could see him, then he'd disappear, then get a sight, then gone again.  It was like a game for Cartman, ears forward and wanting to do a big trot.

I usually try and keep him about 10 mph when we're training but before I realized he was up to 12.5mph and it seemed effortless.  I let him go a bit faster than usual as we were both having a lot of fun.  We got some loping in too. 

About mile 25 we'd lost the grey arab when we stopped for some grass.  He seemed to be a little tired so I walked a bit, then would do a little jogging, then more walking.  This ride is actually quite a bit of hill work so its no wonder he was starting to tire.

When we got to the junction that heads back to camp he got a second wind and was wanting to go!

My Garmin said 28 miles, I think it might be off a bit.  We got back in camp and vetted through. Not quite last this time, but close :) 

I spend the rest of the afternoon fussing with Cartman and we took several grazing trips around camp.

Next morning we loaded up after awards and headed back to Castle Rock.

Mt Adams Ride 2015, photo Jessica Wynne.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Exhausting Day! But good :)


Whew, this was a busy day and I'm beat...

I started out going to the gym at 9am and it was a killer workout!  Then I lifted weights for about 45 minutes, race off to the lab, showered, and worked for four hours.

It was still raining when I got home at 3pm but you could tell it was blowing on through and the blue sky was peeking through.

I waited until what looked like the last shower, then ran down to the pasture and grabbed Cartman.
He was, of course, a bit muddy on the parts not covered by his sheet- so I had to spend about 1/2 hour getting him cleaned up. 

Buddy layed down in the middle of a giant puddle, about 1/2 way through our ride.

I hooked up the trailer,  and even got it on the first try!  I have to admit, I love towing with the gooseneck but I hate hooking it up.

Walking in the deep sand

It was about 5:30 by the time I got to the parking lot at Cooks Ferry.  Buddy was along for the ride and he was just crazy excited to go out with the horse.  We headed out and did a big walk loop in the sand for about a mile then picked up a jog and headed down the trail.

we found a small wooded area.

Cowlitz river

I wanted to ride for as long as I could, not fast or too hard as he had almost a week off due to my schedule and the shoeing appointment that trumped our Thursday night ride.

Exploring the fishing shacks along the river

We did some exploring and ended up with an extra few miles by the time we made the turn to come back.  I did let Cartman walk a bunch in the deep sand.  I think he gets a pretty good work out even at the walk in the deep stuff.

We stopped to watch the train go by, across the river.

It was a beautiful evening.

I think we wore the dog out tonight!

We ended up with eight miles and I was pretty pleased with that!

Tomorrow I have to get the trailer packed up and ready to go to Prineville for a two day clinic with Celena Pentrack on Wed-Thur.  I'm really excited!! Keeping fingers crossed for good weather for this event :)

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Fly By

I had a whole post typed out about our quick ride tonite.  Unfortunately I hit some stupid button on the laptop and just deleted 10 paragraphs at one time. 

So, I'm tired- here's the condensed version:

I've been tired since running the 5K Friday nite.

I was lazy all weekend and even missed my Monday morning work out.

I started a sugar detox on Monday- I wouldn't suggest doing this on the first work day after Daylight Savings Time.....

It has been awesome dry weather and I was able to lunge Cartman out in the paddock last night.

He got completely sweaty and looked Curly after 20 minutes on the lunge.

Today I made it to the gym by 5:30am and even got my extra weight training done after class.

Today I found out it is going to start raining again.

Since it is going to start raining again I had to get a quick ride in tonite.

turning grey again

Someone is REALLY excited!!!

Extra wide/Extra Tall and he still just fits

heading out

Cartman, Buddy, and I made it to the trail at 6:22pm

We did a lot of trot and lope but walked the long gravel road section as he does not have his pads on yet and they have added new gravel to part of it.

We made it 5.10 miles so I walked another 1 tenth of a mile to try and bump my Distance Derby Mile to Date up to an even number.

Despite the time change I still had to get out the headlamp to clean the paddock.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Perfect Sunday :)

It was a glorious day for riding!!!

Michelle and I headed out to what we hoped might be a new close-to-home conditioning trail just outside of Castle Rock. 

When we arrived at the parking spot we were greeted by two large Labradors behind a lovely black wrought iron fence just across the road from our parking spot.  The dogs literally barked their head off for about 10 minutes, but were wagging at the same time.

Cartman came out of the trailer in a huge snit (I suspect because of the barking) and I worried that I might be in for a wild ride.

We hand walked the horses down the road to go around the locked gate and found a place to get on just inside.  We were far enough away from the dogs that C had returned to his normal cool, calm, and collected demeanor. Whew.

We rode for 3 hours!!!! It was heavenly.  It was logging road, but a lot was old enough that you could safely jog or lope it.  Since we'd never been here before Michelle had tried to map out a loop for us using Google maps. 

Unfortunately the one section we needed to ride on the power lines to loop around to another logging road was far steeper than it appeared on the computer.  Nonetheless, we off roaded it through some overgrown logging trails and managed to get 10 miles in without backtracking too much.

There is one section that is an awesome hill climb.  It goes on, and on, and on.  Cinnamon was on her first real adventure with us out in the woods so we let them jog the hill when they thought they just couldn't climb up slowly anymore.

We took it pretty slow today but Cartman got a great work out in.  On the way back to the trailers both horses stopped and drank from puddles! 

We ran into a pair of ladies on Walking horses just as we were getting back to the trailers and they said they ride up there quite a bit and have several loops. 

This looks like a promising spot to ride this spring.

On the way home we stopped for coffee :) It doesn't get any better than a good ride and a good Americano!

When we got home I fussed with the computer trying to get these pictures to download for an hour.  I finally gave up and went and took a nap.

Then I went out, groomed up Cartman and practiced the massage I learned at the clinic last weekend.  He really seems to like this stuff (can't say I blame him!)  and he will stop eating to stand there and let me rub him, especially the neck and rump areas.  Happy horse :)