30 Second Summer Recap

union valley reservoir creek

Lots of camping.

Sums it up without getting too much off topic.  Quick peek at a fraction of a luscious summer, then back to horses.

Started with the tell-tale Boot-Tan Foot.  Here, at our lake close by.

pale feet and tanned legs

It was beautiful this year, finally full of water, after years on end of drought.  The lake, not the foot.  Is there a written rule you have to post pics like this on social media?  Exhausting…

 

In Crystal Basin, Union Valley Reservoir, above Silver Creek Falls.  An unmarked trail, you can sort of hoof it through the brush, leads to the creek that feeds into the Reservoir.

union valley reservoir creek
Family dogs may or may not throw themselves into deep water on the side, almost drowning.  Depends on your breed and how exciting the day is.

 

Summit Lake, high above Donner Lake.

summit lake above donner lake
Easy hike. (Depends; your 8-year-old will want to die. Return 4 years later:  The 5 mile climb is nothing, and only a 20 mile mountain bike ride the next day will ensure regular bedtime hours.) Lake will be all yours to swim in, only Loon Birds.

 

Best smelling secret meadow at around 7,700 feet.

meadow above donner lake

Peaceful.

No one around.

 

But wait!  There’s something moving!

 

dalmatian jumping in flowers

 

Black Bear by our cabin.  Brown, because that makes sense with the name.  Blurry pic, because even if just last year’s baby it felt sort of.  Close.

black bear at donner lake

Hope you’ve had a beautiful summer!


Next week, back with some special posts, inspired by Avery at AHA Moments.  She writes about simple things, with her horses.  And stays positive about it. That’s what we’ll do too, for a week.

Arena Back Drops

cantering with seatbones out of the saddle

Staying at the “new” farm means not being able to see good friends at the “old.”

So many good days together out there, and I’ll miss Nancy, my friend and partner in crime, a lot.  Have a feeling we still have some adventures together, just need to come up with a plan 🙂

Today, honoring the wonderful, enigmatic backdrop of the covered arena at Twisted Oak.  It is absolutely magical – the colors and vegetation forever changing with the seasons.  A treat and an honor to ride there.

I know the beauty can’t come through in the pictures enough (it wasn’t the focus at all when they were taken.) but it can look like a piece of art sometimes when you’re there.  The twisty trees, the droopy tiny branches, the shadows, the moss, and the different leaves throughout the year…

So here goes, pictures from several different months!  Ignore the riding, just look at how the colors change throughout the year!

September heat.

"Elinor Yee"

 

Late fall.

"Dressage On A Dime"

 

December.

young horse trot

loose rein walk

 

January.

Andalusian cross mare

 

Late winter.

starting to leg yield at quarter line

 

Cantering on loose rein

 

Spring time March.

posting trot

easter egg color breeches

"Elinor Yee"

"Elinor Yee"

 

June.

warm up canter before jumping

horse cantering with high neck

 

July.

canter with grey mare

 

The never-ending summer.   August.  So hot you can taste it.

riding a horse in a mist of dust

cantering with seatbones out of the saddle

 

Early fall in September.

inspiration for riding dressage when things are not going well

 

December again.

leg yield from centerline

creating a longer neck

On The News Front – Staying

benefits of living in pasture

I will stay with Miss Gray Mare at this wonderful farm.

No question about it – she is very happy to be there.

horse sleeping in pasture

Early morning, sleeping rock formation.

The only problem – whenever you go someplace new, it always means leaving friends…

Still, how can I ever take her away from living like this?..

andalusian resting in pasture

Woke up Galana.  These horses have some serious sleeping-in schedules.

horse looking like dead whale when sleeping

Galana, her dead whale friend, and my feral looking thing in the top corner.

two resting horses in pasture

It’s going to be very interesting to see where I can take her in her training this year!

benefits of living in pasture

Come Along, Trail Clip!

warming up for first level dressage

Quick clip from the pond loop.

But first, just another shot from the show.  Uphill in the warmup on Sunday – go Gray Mare!

warming up for first level dressage


In case you’re stuck and not riding today – a quick clip, one-handed with the mobile, from the cool down loop.  Probably the last overcast and cool day until end of October.

Nothing exciting happens here.  Which is just the point.

Have a beautiful day!

When To Quit

horse standing guard while another one is sleeping

The minute you consider yourself not good enough, too old, or without enough talent.

There’s no shame in that. Everything has to come to an end at one point.  And that’s alright.  Accept, and move on.

Maybe it’s the “move on” part people get stuck on? Ranting about it.  Endlessly telling anyone who cares, or sadly just ended up within earshot, how they would be doing it if it wasn’t for A, B, or C.

Isn’t it exhausting to listen to?

Of all role models, I mostly admire the ones who’ve been able to stick to their passion for years and years.  The ones who stuck it out, decided over and over that, nope, it’s not time to quit just yet.

It’s beautiful.  To be able to continue on – that’s not for everyone.  And a gift.

Who hasn’t had to end many things throughout the years?  Often not by choice.  And often because the body decided it was time.

Allow it to slip like a piece of cool silk, easy, without trying to grab on.  A happier ending, especially for others around.  While opening up so many other possibilities.


That was a lot of rambling. Not really the style of this site.  Nothing to tie up the end of the post with either.  Back to horses.

Late morning pictures.

horses in pasture under oak tree
Late, but too early to get up.  No one came to say Hello.  Is it still called Catching In Pasture, if you have to go all the way down there, making that “possible-cookie-crinkle” in the pocket just to get them to stand?

horse standing guard while another one is sleeping
– No thanks, still sleeping.
horse watching over sleeping horse

Namaste.horse stretching

In The Forest

trail riding with young horse

Last week we got lost.

I didn’t mind.  Usually you can just find the way, and if not, just turn around and search for the same trail, right?

She did mind.  Miss gray mare, walking fast and hard up the hills.  They were steep, very boggy in places.  Had to work it to keep up with her.

horse in pasture under tree

Pasture Pics – the only ones today.

Going downhill she’d chew the bit and froth, grunting the “bolt-coming-up-soon-because-I-hate-bending-and-sitting-and-walking-down-and-besides-I’m-all-alone-out-here” grunt.

Took a while to figure out we were following a deer trail, not the main trail.  Getting the cantle of the saddle scraped up by low branches should have been a hint.

relaxed horse in pasture

Seriously, it was really fun!  And she had a blast.  Didn’t have a death wish enough to stop and take pictures, but she was cute hoofing it over logs and sliding down a mossy hillside.

trail riding

Clearly, you’ve figured out I did a little more walking than riding on that trail outing.

Next time, when it has dried out, we’ll keep it more grown up.  Staying on on the main trail.  Keeping dressage boots mud free and fleece leg boots clean.

trail riding with young horse

Trail Hike

silvery wood branches and gray horse

Come along for a trail walk.

It won’t take long.


I knew we’d have to meet the bull with super long horns out there one day.  This was the day.

long horn cow and horse

I know you can’t really see how interesting he looks at all in this picture.  But Valiosa could.

After this she told me she’s way too fit, young, healthy and not-lunged to be walking around calmly alone in just a halter across huge open grass areas.

california chestnut

I told her next time we’ll bring the bridle, besides, horses can’t talk anyway.

Super pretty day!  Snapped some pictures while she wondered if the bull would follow us.  (Maybe we can just crop her out?)

harry potter tree

hiking with horse in forest

Occasionally, she managed to be in the picture too.

silvery wood branches and gray horse

Latest Good News:

  • Her Oak Mite bites seem to be disappearing.
  • The surgeon removed the pins in my finger bone.
  • The slow work of creating a useable hand instead of a shaky stiff claw has begun.
  • Eventually we’ll have a little more dressage talk on the blog 🙂

Have a great start on your week!