Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Lower Humidity?

I heard tell that the Humidity was lower today! Oh, is THAT SO????
Can't prove it by me!

Red's turn again today...Falcon's too. I decided to ride Red first and get that troublesome fella's workout out of the way.

He stood nicely for saddling and then I hand walked him down the hill and along the fenceline. But as we were going down the hill, I noticed him charging up along side of me and almost knocked me over...what in de world? Turns out the Maremmas had come dashing around the corner and scared the wits out of him.

I mounted at the corner. He thought about turning around, but soon stepped out nicely for half a mile to Ruths house.

There, at the opening to the mountain trail he stopped and wouldn't budge. Then he eyed the split rail fence and started backing up, thinking that he could pin me on it. Well, sorry buddy, that just won't work. The fence is only about 2 feet high.

So, he kept backing in to her yard. I smacked him with my crop...the usual response....none...still backing up into Ruth's nicely mown grass.

Ok then, I am stubborn too, I am NOT going to get off this time. I pulled straight back on the right rein and made him circle 3 times and as we lined up with the mountain trail on the 3rd turn, I nudge strongly with my heels and whacked him hard on the butt with the crop.

I hate whacking him, but hey, it WORKED! he was confused as to which direction he was going and took off nicely at a trot up the mountain for another half a mile and then I turned him left and headed west so we could access the trail across the road from the house. When we reached the alfalfa field, he tried to run away with me towards the pasture.

So, I decided to not deal with that and halted him and hand walked him again across the road and into the woods. Once again he tried to run away as I was mounting. I quickly gained control and had to circle him again 4 times to get him headed in MY direction. This happened again at a crossroads in the trail, but then he was off moving at a fast walk and when we reached the large open field he started off with a crazy bouncy trot that throws me in to the air...I nudged him and we had a nice canter.

This time, instead of turning around after a mile, I made him go at a trot or canter around the whole perimeter of the field. He did nicely and for once actually Fox Trotted for about a half mile...then broke in to a canter, than back into a trot. But that crazy change over feels really weird, like he is lame, until he gets back in to something more normal.

Back on the woods trail he really took off smoothly until we reached the road. Crossing it, we retraced our steps and ended up with at least a 4.5-5 mile ride...slow yes, but at least we were going.

It was after 7 when we got back to the barn, and really, just too late and too sticky hot to go and ride Falcon. So Falcon gets another break. Hope to post some pictures soon with Mr Red in his new tack.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Sometimes it's just a struggle

I love riding, but sometimes it is just a struggle to get the motivation to "get back out there".

Yesterday, there was a big box in my mailbox, and yippee, it was tack for Red.
Beautiful biothane turquoise bridle, black/turquoise rope reins and a black/turquoise breast plate.

THAT was enough to motivate me and so I attached a bit, got Red, and started trying to fit it on him. It took awhile to adjust everything.

I love Biothane except that it is a pain to do the initial adjustments.

Finally I had everything basically rigged pretty well. I had also put the back cinch on the Plantation saddle and will have to make some more holes in the "keeper".

Aaah, time to ride! ah hemmmm. Red wouldnt budge, not even hand led. But in a few min. he changed his mind and walked along with me up to the top of the hill behind the house. I mounted, and he stood there, but soon he started walking nicely.

When we reached the alfalfa field, I let him have a bite, big mistake, he used that to whirl around and try and head for his buddies in the nearby pasture.

Once again, refusal, refusal, backing, backing, refusals. I had a crop with me and made myself totally relax and started wacking his butt as he backed. It didn't make any differance to him. We circled, backed, circled, whirled, etc. Nope, I was gonna win again tonight.

So off I went and led him across the road and back in to the woods, remounted and fought off another whirl. Soon he was walking nicely. My plan was to have a good ride-albeit a short one, so that he COULD have a GOOD time and KNOW that he would get back home at the end.

We reached the field and he attempted one buck and then took off at a nice gait. The 4 big white dogs cut across the field, but Gypsy, the Boston Terrier raced along behind us. I wish some one could have filmed it. It was hilarious to see that little fat dog racing full speed.

After we had gone a mile, I turned Red back around. Same picture, Gypsy RACING behind us and the big white dogs cutting back across the field. At the woods, I stopped Red to let him have grass, but he tried to get back on the trail for home. So I made him stand and wait for Gypsy.

Back on the home trail we headed for home with a couple of "turn arounds" to get at least a little bit of up-hill work in. We managed to do 3.36 miles in about 25 min. So not bad. We were out there for 50 min, so that shows you how much time it took me to get the boy "movin on".

But all in all we ended on a good note...not great for improving our conditioning for 25 miles, but at least we are keeping him from getting "soft".

Sunday, July 27, 2008

On the trail again

Wow, I hadn't realized that I haven't been on Falcon in more than a week. AND he is getting fat munching on all of that grass.

But last night he had the other boys galloping around the pasture, up the hill, down and then back up again, so at least they are getting some exercise on the hills.

I did ride Red one day last week, and he plumb wore me out with more refusals than I can count...don't EVEN want to go there. He is barn sour it seems and thinks that if he pins me up against a tree or backs in to the woods he won't have to go anywhere, but in the end, I won.

Enough on him. Falcon is my endurance boy, although, I do want to do some with Red as well if he can get over his barn sourness.

I decided to go out to ride this a.m. because it was calling for storms in the afternoon. The morn was warm, but not too bad and I was saddled up by 9 a.m.

Falcon freaked slightly over the Tucker endurance saddle creaking as well as the different rigging. Usually I ride him in my Tucker Cheyenne, but that was up the hill in the horse trailer and I didn't feel like dragging it around. The endurance saddle is the one that he has bucked me in before, but he is going to have to get over THAT because, it does fit him AND me.

So I walked him around the barn lot a few times and tightened up the girth, then walked him down the fenceline to the corner before I mounted. He never showed another concern about the saddle.

Already the deer flies were messin' with his head...poor boy, and just as I went to mount a big ole horse fly landed on him....ugh.

He was very willing to go and we walked the first half mile then started off at a nice trot up the mountain trail...he broke in to an easy canter and I let him set his own pace.

We reached the radio tower in record time, but at the top, there wasn't a breath of air and Falcon was already soaked with sweat with sweat running down his face as the heat index musta been 110 degrees again.

I dismounted and walked him down the rocky east side of the mountain (by the way, it is called Piney Mt) This time I walked all the way to the bottom hoping to get around the gate. We had come 1.7 miles.

No luck, steep embankment on either side of the padlocked gate. We turned around and walked back a little ways and then climbed up in to the woods and followed a deer trail. But once again we came to a steep embankment and thick brush. I could see the road below, but didn't want to try and get through the mess OR try and get down that VERTICAL hill.

Back through the woods. HOT HOT HOT. Falcon is such a good willing boy, just manuevers on through the mess with out complaint.

On the fire road again, Falcon took off at a fast trot and veered left onto the sandy road that I knew dead ended, but I let him go to get more of a workout in. He took off cantering until the trail started up again and I turned him back around and cantered back to the fire road.

He started off walking for most of the climb, but that is tough, so he started trotting and cantering again. He always spooks at the same stump on the way up, so I was ready today, so guess what, he didn't spook!

Soon he was really laboring and slowed down to a walk again. Sweat was pouring off and we stopped at the top to give him a breather.

On the way down the other side more cantering and flying trot. Wonderful, the boy can move, but I hate trotting down hill, oh well, good practice for competition.

He knows to walk when we reach our fenceline and he didnt struggle to race home even though the other boys were hollering for him from their stalls.

While hosing him off, I noticed that he had clipped his left front leg, either with a rock or his hoof. I hosed it off good and he was a little sore, so will have to keep an eye on that.

I put a dose of electrolytes in his feed made sloppy with water and he gladly slurped it up.

Even with all of the walking we had done 3.8 miles in 30 min, with our fastest speed being around 16 mph.

The plan then was to saddle up Dakota and Red and pony one of them, just to see if Red would go out with out balking that way....but geeeeezzzzz it was so hot and the haze had settled in so thick that I couldnt even see the mountains. Not a good day for the respiratory system to be out.

Will have to see what tonight or tomorrow evening bring.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Lookin for trails

Ok, I live in Luray, SURROUNDED by mountains, but where to ride? where to ride?
The only trails going up to the Skyline Drive are just that, up up up and then turn around and come back home, down downd down. Really no circular trails

So, on Tuesday night, Betsy returned my call, saying that she could ride with me on Wed. We started talking about a new place to ride....where oh where. I dug out my Shenandoah map and Wayyyyyyyy over on the far right side of it, it did show the Masanutten range to the west.

So Betsy sped over and picked me up at 7 pm and we headed 15 min down the road to Catherines Furnace and started driving up the State Forestry Road. It did show a horse trail that parralleled it, but how to get there from here?

So we drove and drove and found some 4 wheeler trails and then also one that looked cleared high enough to ride a horse through.

The gravel road had a gradual grade and plenty of creeks (Cub Run) along the way so we figured that we would park at Catherines Furnace, ride up the state road to the next county and return on the horse trail and we might get an 8 to 10 mile ride in.

Ok, so that was a fun outing, with the top down on her car and the hair blowing wild in the wind.......

Wednesday I was awake at 7 as usual. We had planned to leave at 9:30 BUT ALAS it was pouring down rain.....grrrr. Neither of us felt the need to condition in the there was a lot of dangerous thunder and lightening....oh shoot and now Betsy is gone on one of her "Inn Sitting" jobs and won't be back for 3 or 4 weeks. So I guess we won't get to ride together before the Virginia Highlands Challange.

Oh well, guess I will go it alone around the home trails this evening....DARN

Saturday, July 19, 2008

More heat More challanges

Temperature-86 degrees at 7 pm. That actually felt balmy with the slight breeze after yesterday.

Red Dawg wasn't too happy when he saw me with a halter in hand. But, I ignored him and took him out to the post and tied him...of course he gots some snacks.

It didn't take long to saddle up and go. He took off at a nice walk and I thought, this is going to be a nice ride. We circled down through the woods and past Gregs house and Ruths house then back up the lane towards Brookstone Road. That is a mile loop.

Then we headed right out of the driveway on the gravel road. Right now the road has very little gravel and I figured that Red could tolerate it with his bare feet.

Red had other ideas. He flat out refused to budge so I started turning him in circles trying to make him go right. It was hot now, no breeze. Cola and Gemma the Maremmas, flopped in the weeds and waited to see what would happen.

Finally I was able to encourage Red to move on out at the trot up the gravel road to the north.

He balked again when we came to some houses with dogs on both sides...after that he inched along, cautiously checking out every weed, bug, etc.

Aah finally we reached the gate to go through the corn fields. The edge of which has a pretty decent trail to trot on. Red was happy because he thought he was heading for home and we had a nice trot and canter going on.

Then we reached a gate that goes in to the big pasture. Red wanted to go left towards home, I wanted to go right and canter on the flat. Red totally refused to cross the creek today. It HAD dried up alot except that instead of water there was deep mud. So I let him slide and turned left.

Red took off at a canter and then suddenly was in a full blown gallop heading south west for home. BAD BAD BAD. It took me a bit to slow him down. Once again he tried to refuse to go West and I had to get after him. Finally we were going again, nice canter along the fence line for about half a mile.

Then the pond. Red wasn't interested in drinking, but did check out a frog or two. Gemma and Cola caught up and sunk in to the water to cool off.

Now we were headed north east towards home. The cows were all close here with the bull the closest. Hhhhhm, I pulled Red into a walk and stuck close to the fence line.

The Bull ignored us and watched the dogs. We passed safely and took off at a canter again along the fence line. I heard swishing and turned my head to look and saw that half of the cow/calf herd was racing after us....OHHHHHH lovely! But it was hot, Red was fast and the cows quit.

I circled around over the hill and cantered Red up and down and around it 3 times to make up for his balking earlier. He was soaked with sweat now so we headed at a trot towards the "woods" gate. Then I heard barking and figured that the cows werent letting the dogs get through.

I hollered for the dogs, but they didnt come in to sight. It was getting dark and I still had to go through the dark woods to get home I headed. No more refusals from Red and we ended up doing 5 miles in 50 min.

Red was happy to get hosed down and the dogs did find a hole in the fenceline somewhere and came trucking on home 30 min later.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Jeremys Run

I had been depressed all day for some reason and just couldn't shake it but I scrambled home a tad early to get the trailer and Falcon ready for another ride. It was really supposed to be Falcons day off, but Red still doesn't have his shoes, and I didn't know what Betsy's "surprise" ride would be.

I met Betsy at 4 as planned. She and her Honey were in the barn grooming Tristana. Ed walked Tris to the trailer and loaded her. That seemed weird to me, but anyway, I tossed Betsy's saddle in the trailer and Betsy struggled to lock the door on the trailer.

Betsy clambored up in to the truck and was obviously in a very bad mood. She said she had had a HORRIBLE day and nuthin was going right. Oh wow, weren't we a PAIR, ANGRY and DEPRESSED!

Mary Ann, a friend in White Post (an hour away), was supposed to be meeting us and then after the ride would be taking Tristana to her place to be boarded and conditioned for a possible endurance ride-maybe as a ride for Shana, maybe not.

I had already decided "not" since it seemed so iffy. Anyway, MaryAnn decided she couldnt meet us after all and well, this had just upset Betsy since she had been prepared to move Tris.

Ok, so Betsy said "LETS GO" I said "uhhhh where" Betsy said "I DON'T KNOW, go somewhere, to your place or to Jeremy's Run or anywhere".

Oh and did I mention that it was 96 degrees and about heat index of 110 at 5 pm?

Well, I ride at my place all of the time, how exciting is that? So I opted for Jeremy's Run which is 15 min away or so and I had wanted to do that trail with Sinwaan, but never had a riding partner to go with.

There isn't any parking at Jeremys Run. We just had to park on the side of the shoulder either, so mainly I parked IN the road.

We took turns tying the horses to the trailer and saddling up. MAN IT WAS HOT! I was exhausted just after saddling.

Then we walked into the coolness of the trees and the Creek-Jeremys Run.
Betsy had to find a place to mount. So we walked a little ways and she found a big rock to climb up on, but even with that her saddle slipped and she had to hop down and regirth.

I hopped aboard only to find that my right stirrup was completely flipped around inside out or something. So we stopped while I hopped off and realized that all I had to do was flip it around!

Ugh, were we ever gonna get started? I sucked down half a bottle of gatorade.

The path was smooth packed at first, but then turned into a big rocky creek bed which was quite technical for the horses to move along on.

Then more smooth pack, more creek bed more smooth pack. After that first half mile the trail footing was all good. We climbed a hill and came to a SHARP switch back which was another technical spot because of the embankment and I didn't want to be the "man from snowy river".

The "hill" then dropped steeply to the east. I heard Betsy behind me call out frantically, "DAMN, STOP, DAMN, I'm on her neck!" Falcon behaved and Betsy slid off of Tris and called her a BLESSED horse for not bucking her off.

Betsy, in all of the saddle readjustments had forgotten to buckle the crupper and the saddle had slid forward right up on to Tris's neck on the steep incline. Tris trusted her momma enuf to stop. Tris's saddle always slides up even with a crupper and most of the time Betsy walks down the steep hills.

Ok, that fixed, we were off at a fast trot....but MAN IT WAS HOT. I slurped up the rest of my gatorade.

Soon the trail started climbing, up up up, technical sharp switchbacks everywhere. Falcon kept looking up the embankment and his right hind foot kept slipping off of the trail and Betsy told me to make him stop before he fell off the edge...well there would have been trees to catch us I guess...but, I got after him and he did better at paying attention to my leg pressure.

It wasn't long before Tristana flat out stopped and wouldnt budge. Her sides were heaving and nostrils flaring.

We rested and poked on upward, Tris refused again. But by this time we were almost to the ridge top of Neighbor Mountain, part of the "Three Sisters". I told Betsy that so we made it to the top, rested and then turned back around.

It was just too stinkin hot for man or beast! I guzzled another half of a bottle of water.

When we got to the steep hill, this time going up, Tris took off at a 19 mph gallop. Yikes! Falcon was close behind! Sheesh, survived that un!
Ok back to the last bad switchback and then the CREEK! YEAHHHHHH Falcon plunged in and started digging, digging digging. I didnt get off since he was doing such a good job of splashing himself. But I did dump the contents of one of my water bottles on his neck.

Tris just stood there with her head drooping looking pretty puny. That last gallop had really done her in. She was really sweating. Falcon was not near as hot as she was and actually still had dry spots on him.

Betsy started dumping water on her and also some on Falcon. Betsy just really loves Falcon.

Anyway, refreshed we continued on down the trail to the trailer. Tris perked up and did a nice wet poop, so she wasn't dehydrated. We had only done 3.67 miles in an hour. But it WAS a TECHNICAL trail and the HEAT....well did I say that it was MISERABLY HOT-NOT FIT FOR MAN NOR BEAST?

Betsy shook her head, Tris has done endurance, but she hadn't been ridden since we went to Front Royal. She had done nuthin but eat grass for 3 weeks and looked like she was 9 months pregnant with her grass belly. The weight, lack of condition and heat index had really done her in.

But then Betsy said "Falcon won't have ANY problem doing 25 miles, he is in GREAT shape!" I felt tons encouraged by THAT and the depression had lifted somewhere during the ride.

We loaded our ponies and clambored into the coolness of the A.C.'d truck. Betsy thanked me over and over for dragging her out in the heat. Her mood was grrrrrreat too and she said her Honey would greatly appreciate it. Wonderful....wish I had a honey to go home to, but it is ok, I have my painted pony. And he is an alright boy.

He has come so far since spring. I am sure he will still give me some scares, but he knows how to take care of himself on the trail....even down to munching moss and lichens off of downed trees if there isn't a blade of grass in sight....silly horse!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

More Rocks

Yesterday I took Falcon back up the mountain trail to the radio tower. This time I made a right hand turn and headed East down the Fire Road, handwalking Falcon because of the numerous small rocks on the trail. The footing is very unstable most of the way down.

Once again, I did not go all the way to the gate to see if I could get around it. I hope to do that on a day that someone is riding with me since from there I would be on a well used gravel state road.

Anyway, we checked out a graded road to the left. I have never seen so much natural gravel. Anyway there are numerous posts with pink tape on them like the place is being divided up in to lots for sale or building. That trail dead ended. I was hoping that it would end on the road.

So we turned around and headed back to the fire road...crossed it and checked out the opposite graded road which, instead of gravel was all sand. Very interesting change in the soil. But it was great for cantering and so off we went at a nice pace, around several bends and seeminly back up the mountain, but once again, dead end.

Back down we came and turned up the Fire Road. The Maremma's, Cola and Gemma had trotted right along with us the whole way, several times dashing through the woods and barking. Could have been deer, but there was plenty of bear scat on the it could have been a bear they were chasing as well.

The heat was almost intolerable. Not even a breath of air in the woods and I was thankful for the tree cover.

Another problem for Falcon was tiny little flying insects that tormented his head. So he was constantly shaking, shaking, shaking his head. I felt like I was being "shaken and not stirred"

On the way home the maremma's were really panting hard and I was afraid they were going to have heat stroke, but they soon found a puddle and flopped in it and wouldnt even move out of the way for Falcon.

Later the dogs also found a "three trunked" tree. They ran to it and started lapping up water that had pooled there from Sundays rain storm.

Ok, so we did 4.65 miles in about 50 min. Not bad, once again completed with plenty of graded elevation climbs and unmerciful heat. Falcon just LOVED his cold shower back at the barn, and the dogs flopped out flat in the cool shaded grass and looked to be half dead.

New Kid on the block

The plan was for neice Shana to ride with me at the Virginia Highlands Endurance Challange while she was on the East coast in Aug.

Great plan, no horse. Both of us contacted people who might be willing to share a horse. Dead Ends everywhere.

Finally, I was able to follow up on two leads. One woman with a black arab G. Sounded great at first until she blurted out that the horse was afraid of most adults and also small spaces....NOT!

Candidate # 2 was a Missouri Fox Trotter being pony clubbed, but not working out in that dept and owner was willing to let me have him on a trial or lease basis, but they also wanted to sell him to the "right" home.

I linked them to my web site and also talked with them and on Sat. 7/12 they brought "RED DOG DAN" out to my place.

He is a handsome boy....and uh, well now I am the owner.

I took him out for a ride on Sat. night and he handled very well. Beautiful Canter but all mixed up with his trot gaits.

On Monday and Tues. we went out again. LSD work up the small mountain and also 5 miles out around a pasture across the street and through the woods.

He is a very nice boy. Goes right along nicely through water, tall grass etc.

Looks like I will be riding everyday trying to get both he and Falcon in to shape for the Mountains of the New River Valley.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

On the trail again

I arrived home from MT at 2:30 a.m. on 7/10. Cows were mooing, and I freaked out thinking that they were loose. Son David emerged and said that the cows and horses had escaped twice while I was gone. I really didnt care much about the cows, but tore off to the barn to look for the horses.

Both were in the barn lot with Dakota munching on dogfood. Falcon seemed glad to see me and came over and nuzzled and snarfed me. Then Dakota gave up the dog food and did the same while I shooed them out in to the pasture and secured the gate.

(Turns out that the cows had been caught and penned up in the goat pasture)

Falcon had his new shoes put on on 7/10 as well. He had lost both of his hind shoes while I was in Montana and had completly overgrown his fronts which were hanging on with just a couple of nails each.

On Sunday, I decided to brave the heat and humidity and hopped aboard Falcon for a "short" ride up to the radio tower and back.

I had spent the morning clearing the trail and so we had a pleasant ride up...except that as I made the turn on to the fire road, I heard 4 wheelers revving around somewhere in the woods.

I nudged Falcon in to a trot and we headed on down the trail. The revving got louder and so I halted Falcon and flew off of him and quickly rehooked his rein to the chin ring so that I would have some length to work with in case he got excited.

The 4 wheelers rounded the corner and slowed to a stop when they saw Falcon hogging the whole trail. I asked them to wait while I climbed up the steep trail to a wider area. Falcon was visibly nervous, but controlable.

To the right of this trail, it drops off pretty steeply and I didnt want to end up rolling down the mountain.

When we reached the top, another 4 wheeler appeared from the other direction and slowly creeped past then stopped to talk for a few min. Soon they all came past and zoomed on towards the tower.

I gave them some space and then hopped on and we took off. Reaching the top, I saw that the 4 wheelers had taken the trail to the right and were sitting in a clearing.

I decided to explore a trail off to the left that I had never been on be continued......

Ok, so the trail was level for a short while and then dropped down over the mountain. It was definetly a hunters/4wheelers trail as the overhead was low and there were plenty of deer stands in the trees. I had to break branches as we went, but soon got off and hand walked Falcon as the grade was so steep.

soon we reached High Power Lines which had tall grasses and across from that on further down I could see a camping trailer and a red truck, on beyond that I could see Lake Arrowhead Road and Griffiths Butchering. So I knew where I was, but wasnt sure whether I wanted to take a paved road back home and expose Falcon to fast moving cars on this day.

Also, looking at the sky....YIKES, it was a menacing dark gray. The sky was so dark and Thunder was booming all around....ooooooooh we were gonna get wet regardless of the way we went.

Finally, I decided to turn around and go back UP the mountain, because at least the tree cover might keep me from getting totally soaked and I could get in a "Holler" if the the lightening got bad.

Trudge trudge trude, Falcon was really laboring and panting and dripping buckets of sweat from the heat. So I got off and hand walked him up. The wind was whipping all around. Trees were creaking and it was DARK in them thar woods.

At one point, I walked under a half fallen tree, Falcon stepped left and got the saddle horn stuck on the tree. He half reared, hopped sideways and all was well, except for me saying "oh crap, I'm dead if he lands on me"

Thunder kept booming and Falcons ears kept twitching back and forth. Then, grrr, I heard the 4 wheelers again and they were coming our way. At this point the trail was VERY steep but I was able to get off trail for them to pass. They turned their engines off and squeaked on by... but stopped to ask if we were ok and then said "yer gonna git wet"

Yeah, well, not much I could do about it now unless they had room in their camper for Falcon!

So onward we went, 10 steps, heave heave, rest, 10 steps, heave heave, rest...I was nauseated from the heat and the grade. I squirted some of my water on Falcon, but I doubt it helped any. At one point I sat down, but Falcon freaked out about that, so I got back up and leaned on a tree until my heart rate dropped.

When we reached the top, Falcon perked up, so I hopped aboard and he took off. Fine with me and when we reached the lower trail, it started to rain lightly which cooled us off, but the wind was really getting strong, the thunder louder and lightening strikes all around.

I kicked Falcon in to high gear and we raced for home. I never let him run home....ever! But this day, yes sirreeeee. Just as we reached the corner for the barn he saw a dogfood bag in the corner of the pasture and freaked out. Lurching sideways and stopping at the same time. did I stay on board THIS time!

Yikes more lightening. It made the hair stand up on the back of my neck. I jumped off and yanked Falcon to run behind me and we made the mad dash for the barn.

As we got in the barn, the sky let loose with torrents of rain. We got an inch in half of an hour!

I undressed Falcon and he was glad to get in to his stall. I stood in the barn for the duration of the storm. It was horrendous, all of that hammering rain on the metal roof. The roar was so loud that I couldnt hear myself think. The Great Pyrenees were all piled in the tack room and when they saw me they piled on top of me...yes, the dummies are afraid of Thunder.

The lightening was scary and zzzzzzzzting. In fact, Dakota, cribber that he is, was knawing on his stall door and I heard zzzzzzzzzt and looked around and Dakota was going crazy and I think the lightening must have zapped him a little. Serves him right, but I am glad he is ok and it DIDNT stop him from cribbing yesterday!

Shoot, I forgot to take my GPS with me, but regardless of the length of the ride it was a real workout with the climbs and the heat and humidity. Falcon did great and I am giving him 2 days off so I can work Red Dog Dan, the newcomer, which I will write about soon.