Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Vacation...aka Kate's Initiation

We left for Washington on Tuesday, the 15th at 8:30 a.m.--a mere 3 hours later than we'd planned.  We drove up through the back roads, going very close to the town where I went to high school. I was hoping someone else would pull in for fuel while we were there that I knew, but no one did.  I did, however, wave to a classmate's parents as we drove past Roberts Reservoir on our way toward Tulelake; not that they had any clue. *shrug*

Between the road construction and stopping to give the horses a rest, we didn't get to WA until just before dark.  As we drove along Highway 14 headed for White Salmon and the turn off to Trout Lake, I noticed some really hairy cows along the highway.  A closer look revealed that they weren't cows at all!  We took the wrong road out of White Salmon and ended up going up a steep grade through town with sharp curves in the dark in a really huge rig; it was a bit nerve wracking.  We finally arrived at the campground around 10 p.m.

We just pulled off the main road, flipped out the high ties, got food and water and blankets for the horses, and fell into bed.  Poor Kate...a 12 hour trailer ride and then left to hang on the side of the trailer with Bailey, whom she immediately kicked. I think she was letting us know her initial opinion of the situation.

The next day we moved camp, got set up, and drove to Portland to get the etched wineglasses commemorating the ride. Thursday the fun started.  We took Kate and Bailey out for one of the 12 mile loops that the Ride & Tiers would be doing on Saturday.  The trail at the Trout Lake Horse Camp is phenomenal: mostly single track with excellent footing, rolling hills and gorgeous views of Mt. Adams.  A little over halfway though the ride, Kate stopped.  Apparently, she just wasn't seeing the point of the whole thing.  After a little attitude adjustment (read: 'finding a stick to use as a crop'), she decided that continuing on was better than being tapped on the butt constantly.

Our camping spot...(told you it was beautiful!)

Friday, Dennis was talked into actually competing in the event.  Our original plan had been to help with the ride while riding our horses all week long.  Instead, Dennis participated--36 miles of running and riding! Below is proof: Their finish picture with the official time clock (which almost every horse spooked at).  They weren't even last, but that might have had something to do with the fact that the last team lost their horse twice (once he managed to untie himself and went to their nearby home!).

Instead of Kate going out every day and getting used to being ridden constantly, she learned what it was like to be left at the trailer while her buddy horse leaves.  She was not happy and let the whole camp know.  During the event, every time Bailey would come in for a vet check, I had to go get Kate to stand by so that his heart rate would be at criteria.  The vets became accustomed to seeing us hanging around.

Sunday we did manage another ride out, only 5 miles this time on a different trail.  Kate was really doing great, until her giant spook on the way back into camp.  Luckily, she calmed down almost immediately and I managed to stay on--always better than the alternative.

Monday morning we headed for home.  We got out of bed to find that Kate had chewed through her lead rope and was standing next to Bailey grazing.  Apparently, she'd run out of hay and needed something to do!  I know horses eat trees and fences...but lead ropes.  I thought only dogs chewed through their leashes!!

It was lovely to be away from home and camping with our horses and friends.  We had such a great time.  Below are some pictures...enjoy.

Mt. Adams (with SNOW in JUNE!)

Just some scenery...

Can you tell which dog loves horses and which dog was bored???

Another shot of Chloe enjoying her favorite pasttime! (Isn't she pretty?  She had a bath for the trip) She was at the finish line with me waiting for her horse.  Then she jumped all around him, biting his tail, on the way to the trailer, much to everyone's amusement.

And a final shot of George, Dennis' partner, and Bailey coming into the vet check.


  1. 'Oh Darn it Dory', I missed it, I wanted to go, although I would like the riding part and not the running...looks like you had great fun, fantastic scenery!

    Best Wishes
    Kay in Scotland

  2. I keep going back and looking at the photos and lose the post I started...
    Great pictures, looks like much fun but much work too--running with a horse?
    I can see the horses saying "what are these people thinking?"
    Thanks for sharing. My dad and I both had horses and rode when I was growing up, never heard of this kind of event, will have to share it with him!
    My dad had a big Standardbred mare, a retired racing pacer. I had a Morgan mix. We would trail ride and Dad's horse had to be in the lead or her racing instincts would kick in and she'd get all worked up. She'd start going sideways,snorting and huffing and pass the other riders like that, usually the leader would relinquish the lead after seeing such a display!
    If we occasionally let them run (my favorite part of a ride, of course as a kid); she'd always be in front. She'd go into that trotting gait and my poor dad -I thought it was so funny my Dad the best rider around (in my mind) being jerked all over at a really fast pace! Best times of my youth.


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