Sunday, June 3, 2012

A good day for a walk

I flew back in from California today around lunchtime, met up with my uncle, aunt, two cousins and their families.  They wanted to meet Trigger, so I took them to the barn.  They loved on him a bit, then hit the road for the 5-hour journey ahead of them.  I decided to take Trigger for the walk I meant to do last week but hadn't managed to do yet.  The weather was cool and cloudy, and I think about three raindrops hit me, but no biggie.

Woo Hoo!  I get to see new sights!  Not sure what I think of the desert though.  I'm used to trails padded with pine needles and lots of shade, and lush green things to eat.  Not sure I'm a fan of dust, sand, and scrub grasses.
Simulated ear shot (held the camera above his head).  One of these days, I hope to have lots of photos with Trigger Ears at the bottom!
 We hadn't been on these trails yet, so I was kind of anticipating some antics, but he was VERY good.  He was very alert for the first little bit, but mostly just looked at things.  He didn't freak at the quail, jackrabbit, jogger with two (unleashed) dogs, or cyclist we saw.  However, he wasn't a very big fan of the little stream that occasionally fell over a couple of rocks or something and made a little noise.  But I walked along with confidence, and he figured if I wasn't afraid, he wouldn't be either.  It didn't hurt that I let him graze right next to some of the loudest spots.  :-)

 I led him from the left, right, and front (on singletrack).  We stopped and grazed, and we stopped and did NOT graze.  We went up and down some banks (former canal that has been piped in, but the grade of the former canal is still lower than the surrounding land, so to cross it, you go down and back up).  We even bushwhacked a little on our way home, including picking our way over a rocky hill, and he did GREAT.  He walked on a loose "rein" (lead rope) the whole way, and other than wishing he could be further from the stream a few times (but not spinning or snorting or doing more than crowding me a bit, which was easily remedied), he was a perfect angel.

In all, we walked about 2 1/2 miles, according to my GPS.  Back at the barn, I showed him the tarp-covered wood shavings.  He always freaks out when the wind blows the tarps around, even though I have it on video that he does great with tarps.  So I walked him up to them, flung my rope around to hit the tarps (one was standard tarp material in lime green, the other was rubbery and black, and sounded like a drum when the rope hit it).  He freaked out a little bit, but quickly got over it and went to sniff it.  Then he got to graze some more before I put him back out in his new digs--the dry lot.  It's a lot roomier than his stall and run were.

From the front gate toward the back.

From the back toward the front

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