WRANGLING ON THE RANGE #36
It was a beautiful sunny and warm day this September 4; the
skies were blue and bright, yet last evening it had looked like a
large thunder storm was about to come, the wind blew wildly
around the west of here and all the way out to the Ranch, but
no rain came. And today there was no signs of any storm anywhere
to be seen. It had been one warm and sunny week, and this Friday
was no different.
I arrived at the Ranch about noon, and learned that there
was a 1 pm ride of 5 children and 7 adults. I did not see Tom or
Bob, but I told Sandi I would help her and lead the ride. I
brought Goldie in and she enthusiastically ate her special mash,
I guess so for she had not had it since last Sunday, five days
ago. I brushed her down and combed her tail and mane, she was
looking superb, being on the new range (as the boys had put them)
not used all summer, with lots of good long grass ... it had
shown on her, the race horse ribs were gone, she had filled out
some in that area. It was now only 3 days away from the famous
local Parade, that is getting bigger and better and more
popular each year. It has just about everything a Western town
parade could ask for, from horses to bands to floats to wagons to
the princess and other local dignities.
This year there will, for various reasons, not be as many
riders representing the Ranch, but as far as I know Betty
is planning to be there with some of us. I have no horse trailer
at present, so I have to rely on Betty to trailer Goldie and
other horses for those who will be there from the Ranch.
I believe the boys will be busy at the Ranch seeing it is a
Rachelle (another young lady like Sandi) was here today, and
knowing I was leading the 1 pm ride, said, "Keith, can we go down
in the valley ride?"
"You mean in the valley and up-around and back through the
trees?" I replied.
With a smile, Rachelle said, "Yes, you know the one you do."
"Sure, no problem, we can do that one.
And we did, everyone enjoying it all, as that trail ride has
a little of everything, except going through a stream, we just
ride by it. The children kept Sandi and Rachelle busy with jokes
and riddles, some, one admitted, they made up as we rode along. A
good time was had by all. Along the trail, all of a sudden three
ponies directly behind me, jumped to one side. There was nothing
to us humans to see that made them jump. One horse or pony jumps
and usually a few more do the same - a chain reaction. The children
all stayed on, not one of them came off and into the grass. I praised
them for doing so well. Horses/ponies see and hear things at times
that we do not, that is why it is so important to have a good "seat"
in the saddle, especially when trail riding.
There was two "member" fellows out to ride for a couple of
hours. They had left just before the 1 pm ride went out. We un-
saddled the all horses as no other bookings were on the board, so
it was going to be an early finish. With it being a holiday
Monday, many I guess were heading out of town before fully
getting back into the general routine of work and school life.
Bob came into the barn.
"How was your week Bob," I asked.
"It was good Keith, we've started breaking in the young
ones, those 2 and a 1/2 year old ones. We need to retire some of
the ones that have earned their retirement."
"Yes, I see you have some of the young ones in the other
barn. They should make very fine horses for the trail riding
string. Well 'good on you mate' as the Aussie guys would say."
Bob turned the horses out onto the range. Goldie was
looking to follow and go with them, but I had some routine to do
with her first, the routine I hope to use with her in the Parade. She
settled down when she realized I was wanting to practice. She knows
I think by now, that if she is good and does what I want from her, I do
not keep her long until she can join her friends.
I did the walking backwards with her a few times, and the
siding stepping three or four times. Then I took my two spinning
ropes, spun out the right one, then after ten seconds or so spun
out the left one, stood up in the stirrups and was spinning both
at the same time. I also practiced just spinning the right one,
leaning down to my right side so the spin was not far from the
ground, then up and over Goldie's head and down to the left side,
down low while holding on to the back of my saddle with my left
hand. I also practiced spinning the right rope as Goldie walked
They say it is to be warm sunny weather for Monday and the
Parade, and I hope I'll get the chance to do some of this routine, i
f not all of it.
I un-saddled Goldie and then led her down to the range in
the valley while I drove Betty's quad. We moved along nice and
quickly, a slow canter or lope really, but I looked down at the
speed of the Quad and realized how fast Goldie can go when I ride
her full out. She can indeed go close to 40 mph for a quarter of
a mile, and like Roy Rogers' Trigger she is so pretty to-boot. We
got to the range and I let her loose and watched her move away to
join her friends, I never get tired of just looking at her grace
and form, it is like seeing a masterful painting that you can
look at time and time again and never get tired of looking at it.
I am truly blessed of the Lord. He has given me the horse of my
boyhood dreams. I've tried to serve the Lord, sure made my errors,
mistakes and sins along the way, but I trust I've had the heart like
David had, and in my senior years I'm like a kid again with his prized
toy. Yep, been blessed in many ways indeed. To do God's work and have
this Website to inform, instruct, teach, and inspire, is the very best
blessing, I'm humbled that I can through our heavenly Father and
Christ Jesus be given the privilage to proclaim the truths found
on this Website, and to know (by the stats I see every day) that
hundreds and thousands each week, use this Website. That is the
greatest blessing I have for sure. But it is also a blessing to have
my dream horse, and I never fail to thank the Lord all the time, for
being so kind to me in this regard at my senior age, as they say,
it's not over till it's over, and better late than never.
Oh Debbie, the lady I bought Goldie from is coming to the
Parade. She also wants to sell her lovely parade saddle, from the
pictures she has sent me, it looks pretty close to a Roy Rogers silver
saddle I've seen in some of his movies. The Saddle, rolled edges blanket, breast collar, tapaderos, bridle ... the whole silver works, for $2,500.
I must say I'm tempted to buy it.
Did a little mucking out. I try to do my share of the
physical side of running a dude horse ranch. Packed my bag, got
the registration form from the old 1978 Doge truck (still runs
real good - sold to me in running shape after a summer of horse
trailering) I bought for $200, yes $200 (two hundred) from Betty's
neighbor and worked at the summer camp for many years. I need to
call my Insurance company and see what they will charge me to add
this truck to my insurance. Will not be much for you only put the
legal liability on it, and no collision or glass insurance on such an
old truck. Will have to get a safety check as that is the law, and
probably a tune up.
A good day it was, yes sir a good day.
To be continued