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Thanks for stoppin' by!! Grab a hot cup of coffee, and enjoy the ride! You can contact me at gtyyup at wildblue dot net. See ya on down the trail!
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Monday, May 7, 2012

Spring ~ Always Too Much To Do!

This time of year is always so busy...I haven't had time to blog...let alone read many blogs!! So, you're gonna get about two weeks worth in one post!

But, spring has finally arrived here in the high desert...even though it's been pretty cold in the mornin's! Of course, this is typical of our area...it's been known to snow in July! The apple tree is blossoming out, and the lilacs are starting to pop out too!

Apple Blossoms
Apple blossoms

We've started irrigating the alfalfa to stay ahead of the game. It was dry, so we started the wheel lines, then we had two days of rain and snow.  But, we started them up again last evening.

Cold Mornin' Irrigation
Cold Mornin' Irrigation

The freezing temperatures in the mornin's freezes the water on the alfalfa, but as long as the water continues to run, the alfalfa won't burn as the day warms up and the ice melts...strange, but it works.


Iced Alfalfa
Iced Alfalfa

My three-day Mike Bridges clinic was awesome...we even had warm weather which I think is a FIRST in the two and a half years I've been doing them!! Mike taught his techniques for ground training in a square pen. This develops collection, balance and re-balance, stops and turns. The horse also learns how to handle pressure because the energy level is high and everything is done at a trot or  a canter.

This isn't a new technique, it's dated back to the 1600's according to Mike. I found an article about Harold Farren on the QuarterHorseNews.com site that states that Farren invented the square pen...so, I don't believe that statement is accurate, but you can get an idea of the use of the square pen. Harold Farren was an interesting horseman.

It really was amazing how Colt felt when I rode him right after he had been worked in the square pen...really amazing difference! Now I'm planning how My Man's gonna build my square pen!!


Training in the square pen

In other news...my Ol' Man Toby has gone on an adventure!! He left last Wednesday to help a lil' 4 year old girl learn how to ride!

Toby...25 years young!
I read on FaceBook that a local family was looking for a dead broke horse for their daughter to ride...I thought about it, then forgot about it. The gal posted again what they were looking for, and just that day, while Toby was being trimmed I thought he should be doing something. So, I contacted her and we got together.

Toby took it all in stride, and we decided to give it a try. If he doesn't work out, he'll come back home...he's just out on loan. But, I think it's going to work. It was very sad to see him loaded into the trailer and drive out the driveway...I've had him since he was 6 months old...he's my oldest child!! You can read about Toby's life and times on this post if you're interested.

But, I know that he's getting good care from very good people...and he's doing something that I think is very noble for an old horse...helping the young ones.


Reata leads Toby to the horse trailer.

Yesterday was a simply gorgeous day...and a perfect day to help Rancher Dan take his second year heifers with their calves up to their summer pasture...the sun was shining and just a slight breeze.


The View Between Rohan's Ears
Those aren't Colt's ears!!!
Nope, this is the view between Rohan's ears.

Rohan is my strawberry roan mustang that I adopted from the BLM when he was a yearling, and I believe he's eight this year. I did a lot of riding on him before I got Colt. Rohan's been standing around with Stetson and Catnip (the burros) for two years!! I decided that I was not doing him or myself any favors by not using him...he's a good, broke horse, and I should keep him going.

So, I saddled him up Friday evening, had him do a few laps in the round pen, and then stepped on...not a buck in him after two years of not being ridden. We rode for 20 minutes or so...decided to take him the next day to move the pairs.

It worked out perfect. We were in the saddle for 5 hours. His steering is rusty, but other than that he was awesome!

Waterin' Hole
Waterin' Hole

It took three hours to drive them up to the pasture, and only two hours for us to ride back to the ranch.


Get Along Lil' Doggies
Get along lil' doggies

Rohan got his first introduction to peacocks and turkeys at Rancher Dan's place...he thought the peacocks were bad...until he saw and heard the turkeys!!! OMG!!!  Dan had to get between the approaching turkeys and Rohan so I could get Rohan through the gate...we'll have to have more "turkey" lessons I guess!

We loaded up the horses and headed for Hotel Diamond for burgers and beverages...great way to end a perfect day!

Today it's laundry, checkbook, garden and weed spraying...never a dull moment!


12 comments:

EvenSong said...

I started up my irrigation last Friday, too. But Saturday and Sunday we had freezing overnight--the sprinklers that were running were fine, but the other risers (I've got 3 huge sprinklers that I rotate thru about 50 risers) had frozen valves. I couldn't change them until the sun warmed things up a bit!

Elizabeth Martin said...

I can't believe you still have icy mornings! Crazy!

Happy to hear that you loaned Toby out! I'm sure that is something that little girl will never forget! I think young kids need a good broke horse to learn on. They are hard to come by. So it really warmed my heart to see you do this! :)

ellie k said...

here in Florida they spray water on the strawberries when it freezes and it acts as insulation to keep the berries from freezing.

Linda said...

You have been busy! But, I guess that is nothing new on the ranch...loved the photos of the horses - and the alfalfa with the ice on it was pretty!

mugwump said...

just wondering -- was Rohan's neck reining rusty, or have your expectations changed because of the Mike Bridges clinics?

gtyyup said...

Hi Mugs ~ Well, it's probably both. First, after two years, I don't remember exactly what his feel was back then. He is really heavy and stiff in my hands. Secondly, because Colt is like driving an automatic with all the training I've done on him, Rohan felt like a stick shift without power steering...meaning Colt has me VERY spoiled. I sure don't blame Rohan...owner/operator error for not putting time into him. As you well know, you only get what you put into them. I plan on putting him on the circus pole, which will get him giving to my hands. Removing some of his cresty neck will help a lot too!

Nichole said...

Absolutely beautiful photos!

Paint Girl said...

You have been busy! That's great that you got Rohan out, turkeys and all!!
I am sure Toby will be a good addition to that family, and I bet it was tough to see him go!

Crystal said...

How cool about Toby, what a great job for him. And neat to see Rohan out, i dont think I have seen you ride him since I been reading. I too sure notice a difference when i go back to my old broke horses and they arent as nice as the ones where I have learned more with.

Sarah said...

I was riding one time when a flock of guines came over the hill making a racket. First time I'd had the horse in the forest too. She turned and high tailed it out of there at break neck speed. I had no control whatsoever. I was just releived we made it out without crashing into a tree. She never liked going near the woods after that. And shortly afterwards I had to move her on to a new home. I hope the new owners were able to work her over her fearful experience. Your pictures are always so beautiful! I love your part of Oregon and your posts!

Sarah said...

I was riding one time when a flock of guines came over the hill making a racket. First time I'd had the horse in the forest too. She turned and high tailed it out of there at break neck speed. I had no control whatsoever. I was just releived we made it out without crashing into a tree. She never liked going near the woods after that. And shortly afterwards I had to move her on to a new home. I hope the new owners were able to work her over her fearful experience. Your pictures are always so beautiful! I love your part of Oregon and your posts!

Candy C. said...

Love catching up on all the happenings around your place! What a good horse Rohan must be to stand for two years and just go along! I'm sure Toby will do a great job helping the little one learn to ride, how neat!

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