Sunday, October 31, 2010
Saturday, October 30, 2010
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
Monday, October 25, 2010
Meanwhile, back at the horse show in Estancia, New Mexico ---
It's time for the Rattlesnake Race!
The object of the race? "Catch" as many rattlesnakes as you can, of course. Stuff 'em into a plastic bag, mount up and ride like hell outta the ring. With both the rattlesnakes AND your horse. In ONE minute!
Pssst...horses hate plastic bags. They rattle and make a kinda hissy sound and are scary, like rattlesnakes. Duh!
Another pssst. For those of you who've missed this hysterical event, an aside. They aren't REAL rattlers, they're multi-colored squiggly-like "snakes" made from a kind of rubbery material. But to the horses, they look close enough to the real thing and they aren't taking any chances!
The rider who makes it out of the arena in one piece, with the most snakes, is the victor!
I think we have a WINNER! Easy --- right?
Saturday, October 23, 2010
Friday, October 22, 2010
This summer, while visiting our place in New Mexico, we went to a great local horse show. It was my pleasure to watch the littlest cowboy at the show.
Pint-sized, he was sitting astride the fence rail, totally decked out in all the cowboy essentials: summer straw with impressive feather, long-sleeved shirt (always worn by real cowboys to protect them from the sun, rope burns and cactus spines), jeans and belt and boots, with serious spurs.
His daddy had taught him how to ride a big horse properly...look at his perfect form. Straight line from bit to elbows. Head up, heels down!
But little cowboys need a horse more their size...
A buddy, a compadre. Someone to explore the dusty trails of cowboy-dom.
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
Saturday, October 16, 2010
The Very Large Array is located 50 miles west of Socorro, New Mexico, on the Plains of San Augustin.
The plains are vast and wild. They were a perfect location for the movie "Contact" (1997) starring Jodie Foster and Matthew McConaughey.
Thursday, October 14, 2010
In New Mexico there's lots of cows and in turn, lots of cattle guards. They're hefty contraptions so you can drive your gnarly one ton pickup or massive hay rig over 'em and they won't collapse.
The appearance of "holes in the ground" keep cattle at bay and the cows stop short of going over the cattle guard for fear their legs will get stuck in the bars. Not a good thing if you're a cow in cougar country.
Our ranch had to replace a worn out cattle guard last year and I thought you'd like to see how pretty they are brand new out of the box!
Decked out in a bright coat of lemon yellow our guard color coordinates with the surrounding flowers. It takes you from the interior of the ranch to the ranch road that leads to points beyond, with style.
A New Mexico law states every cattle guard accessible to the general public must have a gate next to it so other traffic, on horseback, can pass through. Our "cowboy gate" is a fashionable John Deere green.
Wouldn't it be nice if all states were so thoughtful?
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
Monday, October 11, 2010
When we visited our adopted state of New Mexico in July we went to a local horse show. (Thanks for inviting us Linda!) All the flavor of rural New Mexico was there at the fairgrounds in Estancia.
The costume class was first class!
Miss Liberty was decked out in red, white and blue...
A torch and a tattoo!
The Appaloosa named "Spot" (really!) proudly carried the Native-American-dressed-gal around the arena. It was hard to tell which of them was having more fun.
I really can't remember the judge's pick for the blue ribbon. In my book though, using a minimum of costuming and a great sense of humor, this little guy took the class.
Riding his mule he was, of course, costumed as a "mule deer"!
Saturday, October 9, 2010
Fall has arrived in western Washington. The leaves have changed to their respective colors...from bright reds to vivid yellows. Way to many browns. Little parts of the cedar trees are turning bright orange and dropping to the ground. The grass is greener and longer and wetter than it was all summer.
It's time to say goodbye to horse racing for the winter (sigh). The color and the excitement has headed up to British Columbia and down to Oregon for awhile. It'll be back when the horses return to the barns next February.
It'll be a long winter.
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
Monday, October 4, 2010
It was bound to happen.
We'd bought him used, very used. He'd served us well over the years but, a few weeks ago, hubby brought him in from the pasture with a broken axle.
It was time to humanely euthanize our trusty manure spreader.
And gleefully start shopping for another! One that wouldn't rust (much) or require constant ordering of parts and trips to the store for replacement lumber.
Friday night, the new spreader came home. He's a 37+ Deluxe Millcreek, capable of handling manure for 4 - 6 horses a day. We only have 3 miniature horses and a small donkey so it'll take a week to fill this baby up!
Built to last, he's equipped with poly floor boards that are warranted for 20 years.
And thick skin urethane (that's Rhino lining to you and me) covering the bed to keep manure and urine from eating him alive. Warranted for 10 years.
A dolly wheel jack so you can move him around without the aid of a tow vehicle.
And an end gate so you don't start spreading until you really mean to!
The Millcreek company stands behind their product --- figuratively speaking, of course!
And...the happy person spreading the manure is standard equipment!