Lilli invited me to trailer out with her to Point Reyes National Park for a lovely, arena-less, no-dang-circles trail ride. On the perfect sofa-horse, Tiny. Bliss. Sneaky sneaky Lilli, giving me something to live for.
This got my one courageous brain cell that is still firing (isn’t that nice of it? I mean really, it has a virus too!) remembering what I’ve seen while riding in the wild, or semi-wild areas of California.
Since I have this new map-widget thingy that shows where visitors are from, I wondered what YOU saw on the trail in your area. I’m curious, and I’d love to know.
If you want to see some of what I’ve come across, click on any of the pictures. (all pics courtesy of flickr, credit under photo) The ride where I was alone, rounded a corner and met a mountain lion on a boulder? No problem, (other than my sheer terror). We backed quietly away.
The ride that stands out? We were on the trail in the Sierra Nevada Mountain range, on trustworthy, quiet quarter horses. In western saddles. (I’m not as confident in a western saddle, but they are darn useful in the mountains.)
The trail changed to big flat slabs of rock and giant boulders, altering it into a narrow, winding, rock strewn footpath at the bottom of a chasm. Perfect mountain lion hunting grounds. Unlikely event with this galumphing, noisy crowd. Pretty much we were humping over small boulders and grit-slippery flat sheets of rock, which meant giving the horses their heads and paying attention to the ground.
What nearly brought on the medivac helicopter? A light, floating, ribbon of toilet paper wafted down from a trail higher up the mountain, and settled on one of the horses.
Earlier in the day? We passed a bear. Nada.
The line of horses turned into a melee. If it wasn’t so incredibly dangerous, it would’ve been funny. It was horse bumper cars: with every horse reverting to herd instinct and smashing into each other, backing up, bolting forward, leaping next to, whirling around and smashing backward. Thankfully, we had the most experienced riders at the front and rear, and they broadsided their horses across the trail, keeping the herd from bolting, and allowing time for toilet paper eradication.
So whatcha seeing where you are? Give me a reason to climb out of my sick bed. (smile)