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Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Team 60: Montana Spots

 

spots

 

My name is Peggy Ann Strupp, I live in northeastern Montana near Sidney.  I started riding horses as a child in rural Florida; now I ride in the snow & ice of Montana!  I own/ride two horses: a red-leopard Appaloosa & a dark bay grade gelding.  I don't compete with my horses - but I do compete with my Dalmatians in a field trial/trail ride that is on horseback, designed to test the Dalmatian ability to "coach", or "follow the horses".  A Dalmatian "Road Trial" is a judged trail ride for 12.5 or 25 miles, where only the dog is judged.  I put trail miles on my horses both for pleasure & to prepare for Dalmatian Road Trials.  My dogs are trained to be great trail companions, and they accompany me on all trail rides.  I also ride sidesaddle in parades with the dogs.  I rode drill team when we lived in Idaho; I started a drill team here in MT after we moved here in 2008, but I wasn't able to interest enough people to keep it going.

I am certified in Secondary Ed & work as a substitute teacher.  I ride mostly along the "canal road" or out to the Yellowstone River. I hope to explore new trails in my area this year. I look forward to keeping track of my horse mileage, and reading the stories of others! 

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93 comments:

Peggy Ann said...

This week: 9.1 miles. Unfortunately, some of them logged searching for a missing resident of our town. No luck yet.

Peggy Ann said...

Jan 14: 6.18 miles out to the Yellowstone River & back (via Seven Sisters Recreation Area). 20 degrees out when I started; warmed up to almost 30 before I was done. I rode with hand warmer packets in my gloves; toe warmers stuck to my socks in my insulated boots. Snow pants on. Windbreaker under down coat. Knit neck warmer & fleece ear warmers under helmet. Not too bad! Took both dogs with me; they keep warm as long as they are moving! We have about an inch of snow on the ground from last night - our first snow for about a month.

Peggy Ann said...

Jan. 17: 2.14 miles. It was ZERO degrees most of the day, so when the temp jumped up to FIVE ABOVE, I decided to take a short ride around the pasture. 10 below with wind chill. Left the dogs inside while I saddled Pate (App); went back in to warm up; then headed out w/dogs. Wore the usual warm stuff, but had to keep my fingers (& the reins) on Pate's neck whenever possible to warm my fingers. Stayed out about 30 minutes - about 10 minutes too long! Had to go in to warm my skin before I could go back out & unsaddle! Nice ride, though!

Peggy Ann said...

1/21/12: 7.42 miles. Got up to 30 degrees here, after 3 days of sub-zero! Still felt cold, though. 2 men were target shooting by the river, but they stopped me & warned me before they began. Shadow was a bit unnerved by it, but we rode right by them with just a few tight circles to calm him!

Peggy Ann said...

1/28/12: 7.08 miles on Shadowfax. I'm training my new Dalmatian for the Road Trials (Dalmatian field trial on horseback), and I got in some good training. Long way to go before she's ready for the May trials! The wind was like ice today, so I did most of the ride near tree lines & natural windbreaks.

Peggy Ann said...

02/02/12: 4.21 miles.
Total: 36.13
We've had a "warm" week here (in the 40's), but I've had to work every day & I come home to my darling husband who needs my help with his projects! But today I hurried home to get in a ride. Lovely day, lovely sunset! The young dog still won't sit on command, though! Lots of work to do before we compete (at the Dalmatian Nationals).

Peggy Ann said...

Earlier post that I don't see here: Feb. 4: 7.24 miles

Peggy Ann said...

Feb. 15: .6 miles
Feb. 16: .35 miles

Peggy Ann said...

Total (according to my records): 44.32 miles
(I posted my Feb. 4 miles while I was away from home - the post showed up right after I posted it, but doesn't seem to show up now, so I have re-posted. My total includes that mileage.)

Peggy Ann said...

Feb. 18: 8.31 miles.
Total: 52.63
Rode out to the Yellowstone River; did a lot of loops through the forest. New snow last week is melting; made for very soft, slippery footing in some places. Beautiful day!

Peggy Ann said...

Feb. 20: 7.15 miles on Pate.
Total: 59.78
BEAUTIFUL SUNSHINY MORNING! But I didn't get out until afternoon! By the time I was saddled, cloud cover cooled the air. Within minutes of starting, dark clouds exploded on the horizon, their black fingers touching the ground in the distance all around me, an icy wind biting my face, but no rain or snow while I was riding! And any day on a horse is a good day! Great ride!

Peggy Ann said...

Feb. 22: 4.02 miles on Shadow
Total: 63.8
BEAUTIFUL SUNSHINY MORNING! And I actually got out in the morning! Lovely, quick ride. By the time I put Shadow up, the day had turned gray! Raining now!

Peggy Ann said...

Feb. 24: 5.92 miles
Total: 69.72
Colder; around freezing; but sunny! New snow made it muddy again, but it was a nice ride. As we passed a house in the "neighborhood", we passed a cat that hunkered down at the edge of the road (thought we couldn't see him!) The dogs saw him, and they stayed at "hock"! Yeah!

Peggy Ann said...

Feb. 25: 2.1 miles (Shadow)
Total: 71.82
Ugly, UGLY day! (admittedly maybe not as bad as you in the south!) Colorless & gray. Strong, icy wind, but we needed the training time! I tried to stay near the trees, but the wind in the trees & the power lines was SPOOKY. Sounded like Halloween!

Peggy Ann said...

3/1/12: 8.56 miles on Shadow
Total: 80.38
Nice ride today, although Shadow was full of it. Not a lot of spooks, just a lot of head tossing & trying to break into a gallop without permission! Guess I should be riding him harder/farther! I (almost) always ride alone, and today when a stranger stopped me in the forest to ask directions to the campground, I was wary. I gave him directions, but we sure kept our distance. I look at everything differently since a co-worker was abducted & murdered while jogging in town 6 weeks ago.
On the up side, it was a great ride!

Peggy Ann said...

3/5/12: 8.07 miles on Shadow
Total: 88.45
UNBELIEVABLE TEMPS for March in MT! Best day yet of 2012! It got up to 60! Almost too hot for long johns. Muddy ride; mud all over girth, but nice ride!

Peggy Ann said...

3/8/12: 7.30
Total: 95.75
canal road today. Windy & cool but not bad for March! Top elevation 2.055'. Don't know how I can condition for the elevations at Mt. Rushmore! (June).

Peggy Ann said...

3/9/12: 4.25
3/10/12: 5.20
Total: 105.2
Seventy degrees! In March! Just delightful!

Peggy Ann said...

3/12/12: 2.19 on Shadow
3/15/12: 6.83 on Shadow
Total: 114.22 miles
Monday I rode bareback for a quick "walk the dogs" around the hay field after work. I'd forgotten just how much more WORK it is to ride bareback! Today I saddled so I could go a bit faster & farther. Tried to take all 4 dogs (for the first time), but our retired Seeing Eye Dog wasn't having any of it! (He's a 12 yr old Lab, & just doesn't trust horses!). Had to go back for him several times; finally took him back to the house & left him! Fun ride, though!

Peggy Ann said...

3/20/12: 2.67 miles on Shadow
3/21/12: 7.07 miles on Shadow
YTD: 123.96
Last year when I rode to the river on this date, the river was chunked up with ice jams as big as Volkswagons. The cracking sounds of the shifting ice were un-nerving. But today, I rode in shirtsleeves! Not a sign of ice or snow; the river is low & the washes are dry as a bone! Still no leaves or green grass, but unseasonably warm!

Peggy Ann said...

3/23/12: 5.16 miles on Shadow & Pate.
YTD: 129.12
I decided to take out Pate (the App), even though he has chronic sesmoiditis. After all, if I 'm going to keep him for parades & grandkids, he needs some riding. I took each dog out one at a time for training, trotting in the hay field. Pate wasn't lame at all, so tomorrow will tell. Then saddled Shadow for a few more miles with both dogs. Got some good training in!

Peggy Ann said...

3/24/12: 1.31 miles
3/27/12: 7.35 miles
YTD: 137.78
Lovely ride today!

Peggy Ann said...

4/2/12: 5.26 miles
4/3/12: 5.34 miles
YTD: 148.38
I can't believe how warm it is here, also. Mornings are below freezing, but afternoons get to the 60's & 70"s. Anyone out there from Tulsa? How warm (hot?) will it be in Tulsa when I go there for my field trial (on horseback) May 3? INTERESTING spring!

Peggy Ann said...

4/6/12: 7.22 miles
4/7/12: 6.25 miles
YTD: 161.85
GALE force winds today! I rode the bottom lands to keep out of the wind, but that only gets me a few miles, so I had to go out in the open. On the ridge I had to work to keep my free hand on my leg. The wind lifted it right up into the air. Felt like when you stick your hand out the car window to play in the wind. Shadow had to lean into it. Sunny. In the 50's. Wasn't sorry I wore my snow pants and had heat packets in my gloves! I did find some new paths through the hilly grasslands by the reservoir!

Peggy Ann said...

4/9/12: 4.09 miles
4/10/12: 0 miles. But I did TAKE DOWN THE CHRISTMAS LIGHTS!

Peggy Ann said...

4/11/12: 3.25 miles on Pate
4/14/12: 16.15 miles on Shadow.
YTD: 185.34
Rode about 8 miles & stopped at the PO to pick up mail; noticed I was missing my cell phone! Used the GPS to re-trace each exact step of that 8 miles, but never found the phone. But look how many miles I logged! (Sheesh. Are we keeping record of the # of cell phones lost?)

Peggy Ann said...

4/16/12: 4.05 miles on Shadow
YTD: 189.39
RE: T-shirt: I'll take a long-sleeved size M; I would need it mailed.
Nice ride in the hay field. The world around me is changing. The oil boom is causing a population boom; lots of people living in camp trailers. Got a call from the neighbor whose son is a fish & game officer. She warned me not to ride alone in the state rec area nearby - fish & game checked the fishing licenses of some long-term campers & have identified them as "wanted" in another state. Yes, I pass their campsite every time I ride. Maybe I'll steer clear of there for a while.

Peggy Ann said...

4/17/12: 3.08 miles on Shadow
YTD: 192.47
At work today (high school), one of my students mentioned she saw me riding on Saturday. I mentioned that's when I lost my cell phone. She said, "Was it PINK?" Apparently she/they found my phone, didn't know to call the "in case of emergency" # listed first; didn't know what to do with it, so they put it back in the middle of the path. I drove out there today to look where she said they left it, but found nothing. Oh well!

Peggy Ann said...

4/21.12: 7.61
YTD: 200.08
Made the 200 mile mark! YAHOOOO! Wild plums bursting in white made a fragrant ride down the avenue!

Peggy Ann said...

4/23/12: 5.30 miles
4/24/12: 8.21 miles
YTD: 213.59. Hot, hot,HOT! Up to 80+ yesterday while riding @ high noon. Today was forecast for 90's, so I got out earlier! Leaving to babysit grandkids, then on to the Dalmatian Nationals, so not much riding for me for a few weeks! Oh no! Those riders on my tail on the leaderboard are gonna leave me in the dust!

Peggy Ann said...

4/29/12: 2.51 miles on Pate.
YTD: 216.1
I'm off to the Dalmatian Nationals, where I will rent a horse to do the field trial!

Peggy Ann said...

5/2/12: 5.20 miles on "Prince"
5/3/12: 13.10 miles on "Prince" for the Dalmatian Road Trial (field trial) at the Nationals (Tulsa, OK). Prince was a rental horse with a smooth running walk - when I could get him to do it, but most of the time we just trotted, with one good gallop thrown in for the judged "exercises". The dogs did GREAT; they took 1st & 2nd; my new little girl's 1st was also 1st overall ("High In Trial"). All those distance derby miles paid off!

whirlwinddals said...

Yay Peggy Ann!

Peggy Ann said...

5/14/12> 7.14 on Shadow
YTD: 241.54
Nice ride. Nice to be home. Spent more than a week at the Nationals, with 4 days of travel. Getting hot here. Hey, if anyone is listening, do we have any riders from the St. Louis, MO area?

Peggy Ann said...

5/16/12: 4.25 miles on Shadow
YTD: 245.79

Peggy Ann said...

5/20/12: 2.78 miles on Shadow & Pate
YTD: 248.57
Someone my husband knows was supposed to bring their children over for "pony rides", but they never showed up (go figure!). Had all the tack out, so when it got late I took a little ride on each horse. Lovely night, but the gnats are TERRIBLE.

Peggy Ann said...

5/22/12: 4.48 miles on Shadow & Pate
YTD: 253.05
"Pony rides" for 3 children of my hubby's new acquaintance. Husband (non-horseman) to me (as I ride off ponying one child on the App): "Don't you want to put 2 kids on Pate and put the other in the saddle with you so you can take all three?" Me: "NO." (Seriously? Do you really think they'd appreciate a trip to the ER when they all fall off?) LOL. It was a nice time, though. The little girl was terrified at first but by the end, they were all begging their parents for a horse!

Peggy Ann said...

5/25/12: 8.44 miles on Shadow
YTD: 261.49
I saw my first real live paddlefish today! I've seen photos, but today someone fishing the Yellowstone had one on a stringer (a strap, really), so I got to see it. At least 4 feet long, no fish story! Looks like something out of Jurassic Park! The dogs also scared up a nice big turkey, and I got brave & went bushwacking to look for new paths. It's turned cold again - I was in winter gear - but it was a lovely ride.

Tammy A said...

Cool! I have never seen one, I bet it was neat to see.

Tammy A

Peggy Ann said...

5/30/12: 4.12 on Pate.
5/31/12: 7.55 on Shadow.
YTD: 273.16
3 days of light rain has left things sloppy, but not too bad. Didn't need a coat today. Saw 2 turkeys in the grain field; I clocked them running @ 10 mph!

Peggy Ann said...

6/2/12: 6.35 miles on Shadow
YTD: 279.51
Will somebody please teach me how to tie a better knot? I tied Shadow to a tree @ the PO (I do this all the time) & while I was inside, the Postmistress looked out the window & said, "Your horse is walking down the street." I bolted out the door, catching up w/Shadow about 100 feet from the highway (speed limit: 70 mph) as a long line of traffic was barreling by. Talk about heart attack! (a few weeks ago a horse was killed right down from us on that hwy.)
My knot was a "panic knot" that can be pulled loose quickly, but I put the end of the lead rope through the loop (loosely)in an attempt to secure it. Obviously not well enough! Shadow rubs his rope & knows what he is doing, but there was also a loose German Shepherd harassing him. Either way, someone needs to teach me how to tie a better knot! (Maybe when we are riding @ Mt. Rushmore...)

Peggy Ann said...

6/4/12: 8.38 miles
6/5/12: 6.20 miles
YTD: 294.09
Oh my gosh! Just 6 more miles to 300! Awesome! Yesterday we scared up an owl & some beautiful yellow finches. Both days I've worked on trotting up hills trying to get Shadow in shape for Mt. Rushmore. Hard to do when the biggest elevation gain I have around here is about 100 feet! But we are doing our best trying to find every rolling hill that's not fenced off! LOL
Shadow will have 10 days off while I travel for family & then for dog shows. I may get some riding in with friends, but not on my horse.

Peggy Ann said...

6/6/12: 5.1 miles.
YTD: 299.19
It was all I could squeeze in before my trip!

Peggy Ann said...

6/14: 4.52m.
6/18: 6.18m
YTD: 309.89
Borrowed a horse while on vacation. So nice to meet up with horsey friends from the past! Home for one day before going to Mt. Rushmore. Got in some nice runs up hills today. Off for a 7 hour trailer drive to Keystone, SD tomorrow! WHOOT WHOOT!

Peggy Ann said...

BUCKET LIST: Ride to top @ Mt. Rushmore. CHECK.
6/19 2.52 m. Rocky ridge behind Elk Haven Camp Ground, SD.
6/20 9.06 m. Ride to the Lake with Tammy, Sue, Sandy, Mike (Distance Derby riders), Steve, & Barb (horse riders we "picked up").
6/21 8.91 m. Custer State Park with Steve, Barb, Tammy, & Sue.
6/22 20.17 m. MOUNT RUSHMORE RIDE with Christine (young girl I talked into it).
6/23 7.69 m. Iron Creek trail to Rock.
YTD: 358.24

Peggy Ann said...

I've never taken a "horse vacation." I never would have yet, if not for the Distance Derby! I trailered 7 hours on Tuesday to Elk Haven campground in SD to meet Tammy Alexander, Sue Maiwald, & Sandy & Mike. They led us on a short ride Tues. night. Wed was stormy, but we got in a loop around the lake & down the Iron Creek trail in the afternoon. Beautiful waterfall, peaceful lake, shady trails, great view of Mt. Rushmore, interesting & challenging water crossings!
Thurs. we opted for Custer State Park with our new friends Steve & Barb as guides. There we viewed beautiful wildflowers, wild turkeys with their brood, whitetail bucks in velvet, & amazing rock outcroppings looking down on the campground.
By Friday we had heard lots of horror stories regarding the Mt. Rushmore ride of 24 miles, but I was undaunted. I went from campsite to campsite putting out the word I was looking for a riding companion to do the Rushmore Ride. I found a 23-yr-old delightful college grad with a QH who was willing to accompany me, and Fri AM we were off! I was afraid to waste time finding the correct trails out of Elk Haven (the trails are not marked that lead out of the campground), so we trailered to the lake which shortened our Mt. Rushmore ride by 4 miles (not a bad idea!). Once on the national monument trails, the trails were well-marked & easy to follow. The trails consisted of beautifully shaded mountain paths with numerable creek crossings & varied elevation that rose & fell repeatedly. We met hikers with dogs on the trail, but on that day, no other horses. The entire trail is shaded by Black Hills pine, Pinto trees, & Aspen. Wildflowers included lilies, wild roses, penstimon, wild raspberries, baby's breath, and even a red domed mushroom! Two whitetail buck in velvet stood still for us; a wild turkey with her brood flushed up the hill; and a darling mama grouse jumped into our path, fluttering her wings & squeaking pathetically at us to lead us away from her nest.
The first time we crested a peak to see a view of Mt. Rushmore, we were greeted with a breathtaking side view of George Washington; sparkling white granite framed by lush green pines. Down into another valley we dove, climbing & dropping again & again in the shade of Aspen & Pine. As we approached the last leg of the trail we wouldn't have known we were close; but the steep grade & rocky terrain gave it away. Although the last 1/2 mile was steep & challenging, it was not frightening or overwhelming, and our horses picked their way up the path with confidence & without a mis-step. There were only two spots that were rock-step to rock-step which gave me pause, but my horse faltered not. There's nothing quite like the feeling you get when you must trust your horse, and he does not fail you.
At the top of the steep climb we arrived at a shaded sandy knoll overlooking the Mt. Rushmore parking lot! Suddenly, we were "there"! The Presidents in full view! And we had the best "parking space" of anyone! The live-view of Mt. Rushmore is inspiring no matter how you see it, but arriving there by horse gave me an un-matched thrill.
We tied the horses to trees, hobbled them for good measure, climbed down the ridge, hopped over the highway rail, and strode triumphantly into the swarm of tourists to celebrate our accomplishment with ice cream! After a few more photos we carried our celebratory ice cream back up the ridge & ate with our horses. After the 10-second timer on my camera recorded the event, we began our triumphant descent. The trip down the steep slope at the top seemed easier than I had imagined, and we continued on a delightful shaded ride for the 10 miles back to the horse trailer.
If you ever get the chance, this is the ride you can't miss. One of the best trail rides I've ever been on. And all due to the Distance Derby! Thanks, Tammy, Sue, Sandy, & Mike!

Cheryl said...

Thank you for this lovely write up! You have inspired us to ride to Mt Rushmore!

Tammy A said...

It was a pleasure to meet you Peggy Ann! I enjoyed our sight seeing trip, our shared trails & our wonderful meals together! I wish Sue & I would have been up for the ride to Mt Rushmore with you but I think the two extra days at Fort Rob and the heat caught up with us. Maybe next time ;)!

Horses Are Our Lives said...

Loved reading your write-up! I'm glad you found someone to ride up to Mt Rushmore. I loved riding up to it also, and would go back! Brenda, Team 14.

Peggy Ann said...

6/25: 6.18m. on Pate.
YTD: 364.42
Pate is my "sesmoiditis" App that I haven't ridden much this year. Today was his first ride with pads under the shoe, and at this distance, he did not come up lame (at least not yet, that I can tell). Cross your fingers! He's such a nice horse, I'd hate to use him only for parades & grandkids!

Peggy Ann said...

6/28: 7.22m on Shadow
YTD: 371.64
Nice ride in Seven Sisters Recreation area.

Peggy Ann said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Peggy Ann said...

7/3/12: 3.53 m on Pate. Pads under his shoes. Seems sound.
7/4/12: 1.85 m on Pate.
YTD: 377.02
Did the 4th of July Parade in Lambert, MT (population 600). They have a nice parade with lots of classic cars & antique tractors & farm equipment. People come from far & wide. The city feeds everyone barbecue at the park for free after the parade! I ride sidesaddle with a red skirt, red & blue tack, & the dogs have R W & B collars. Lots of fun! Like I told Tammy Alexander, it takes me about 1 1/2 hours to "dress" for the parade; 40 minutes to drive there, and my part in the actual parade lasts about 15 minutes! :)

Peggy Ann said...

7/6/12: 9.39 m on Shadow.
YTD: 386.41
Train of thought: "If I do the loop, it's only 6 miles. Maybe I'll add a few side trips to make 7. Maybe I'll add the hay field to make 8. Might as well add another side trip to make nine. YEE HAW this is fun!"

Peggy Ann said...

7/20/12: 6.07 on Shadow
7/20/12: 2.49 on Pate
YTD: 394.97 Back from visiting new grandbaby in ID, then visiting our daughter in CA. Great to be back on the horses. Getting closer to that 400 mile mark!

Peggy Ann said...

7/21/12: 2.60 on Pate: PARADE!
YTD: 397.57
Old Timer's Celebration in Fairview, MT (about 22 miles N of me). They have a very nice parade; well attended, but it provides a challenge for horsemen. Most of the parades around here march down the "Main" St., then go around a block or two, wait for the tail end of the parade to pass by & stack up behind, then the starters march back down the main street the other way. Not so in Fairview. In Fairview, the parade marches south down the 4 lane 25 mph hwy that goes through downtown, then the front of the parade goes around the block at the end of town & then heads back down Main going North while the back half of the parade is still going south on the same road. From a horse's point of view, this means the horse must face the fire-breathing dragons (semi's) at the end of the parade, and walk right past them (with small children scuttering around underfoot at the fringes of the street). All the horses are at the front, and when we went back down main facing the rest of the parade, we faced semi's (advertising their oil businesses, revving their diesel engines), floats (streamers & balloons), marching bands, and some VERY LOUD un-mufflered race cars revving their engines! All the while, little children are running out into the street to try to grab the leftover candy. Did I mention I have a VERY GOOD HORSE!!! Pate handled it like a charm. Not every horse was so calm...

Peggy Ann said...

7/27/12: 4.04
7/28/12: 2.39 Parade!
7/31/12: 1.31
8/1/12: 1.8 Horse Extravaganza @ County Fair
YTD: 407.11
Last Saturday I drove 2 1/2 hours each way to ride in an "All Horse" parade in Taylor, ND. They advertise on a billboard on the freeway, so I've wanted to do this for a long time. The town has about 150 people; the parade is attached to a "Horse-Fest" all-day event of team pulling, breed exhibitions, etc. The parade was well-attended by people from Bismark, & it was a lot of fun to do a parade that is designed for horses! No candy! No shutttling the horse trailer to the end - you just ride back through the residential streets (no cars on the streets - everyone is at the parade) to get back to your horse trailer. Lots of room to pull the horse trailer in & out. Lots of friendly people. Gee, that was nice!

We also have a "Horse Extravaganza" at our county fair, and I put on a demonstration there with the dogs & the App last night. A horse drill team from Plentywood, MT (about 2 hours north) came & performed & did a great job. SO JEALOUS! (But not jealous enough to drive 4 hours 2x a week to join them!)

FYI: Too bad miles in the trailer don't count! I drove 5 1/2 hours each way to take Shadow to an equine hospital/dentist in Sturgis, SD. The Dr. extracted one of his molars that was infected & was leaking pus out the side of his face (Tammy A & Sue M saw this when we rode Mt Rushmore - at that time I thought it was an injury). Hey, but on the up side, I got to buy a Sturgis Motorcycle Rally T-shirt! :)

Peggy Ann said...

8/4/12: 2.20 miles on Shadow
YTD: 409.31
Pony rides for the neighbor's grandkids. Bring 'em up right!

Peggy Ann said...

8?9?12: 5.54 miles
YTD: 414.85 Nice surprise! A neighbor (lives right across the highway) saw me at school (she's a teacher too), & mentioned that she "used to ride", had her own saddle, & would love to accompany me on a trail ride sometime! So off we went. Nice ride. Nice to have company.

Peggy Ann said...

8/17/12: 8.25 Shadow
8/18/12: 3.41 Pate
YTD: 426.51
Yikes! Team Arab is right on my heels!

Peggy Ann said...

8/25/12: 8.23 miles on Shadow.
YTD: 434.74
School has started, so I am working full time; I've started a new job & I feel like I'm still running to catch the train! So a Saturday ride was great! Hopefully I'll feel like I have time to ride after work on some of these days before the sun goes down too quickly! Yikes! It's still hot here, but I can "feel" fall coming on!

Peggy Ann said...

8/29/12: 4.35 on Pate
YTD: 439.09
Here's a link of me performing on Pate at a Horse Extravaganza with the Dalmatians in Sidney, Montana this month. It's a demonstration of the judged exercises at a Dalmatian Road Trial. I'm riding sidesaddle. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zvXtUzNvG80&feature=plcp
I wish I knew how to "share" the link so it would be active, but I guess you'll just have to copy & paste it into the url if you want to watch it!

Peggy Ann said...

8/31/12: 5.31 on Shadow
YTD: 444.4
Four Fours! That's gotta be worth something! Today I took the Pointer with us. She's a 100 mph dog & very birdy. I take her for a walk almost every day with the other dogs, & I have to call her back every minute or so. Boy, "walking" her from horseback is the way to go! Much easier to keep up with her! She pointed & held 4 times, & then flushed on command. Plus she found 3 other birds (pheasants) that flushed before she set her point. We didn't train this dog formally; she has trained herself. It's not hunting season, of course (and actually I don't really hunt; my husband does), but it was a lot of fun!

Peggy Ann said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Peggy Ann said...

9/1/12: 3.70 on Shadow.
YTD: 448.1 So, today I wanted to cut some wild sunflowers to make a bouquet for church. Instead of driving the truck around, I saddled up Shadow & cut flowers from horseback so I could get in more miles. Of course, I rode a few miles down the road & back first, water sloshing in mason jars in my saddle bags. Is that obsessive? Is that bad? LOL... not with this group!

Peggy Ann said...

9/7/12: 3.09 on Pate
9/8/12: 4.66 on Shadow.
YTD: 455.85
Yesterday I was invited on a trail ride with the "silverados", a mounted drill team that practices about 60 miles north of here. The trail ride was only about 15 miles from my house, on rolling hills & grasslands (not much in the way of trees). 13 riders & horses, only 1 came off. It was an interesting way to ride - the land was so "open" that we could all ride abreast of each other if we wanted to. Riders with "problem" horses could run up a hill & work their horses out without getting far from the group. I normally ride alone, and on the rare occasion I get to ride with others, Shadow can get pretty antsy if he feels like he is being left behind. Shadow was interestingly calm; the model trail horse! Maybe it had to do with the open feel of the trail & the number of horses riding abreast. I found myself able to circle back & help others or ride up hills without a fuss. Nice ride. Too short; these ladies & gents obviously aren't trying to track their miles!!

Peggy Ann said...

9/14/12: 3.33 miles
YTD: 459.18
Not much time to ride this week. Sat. I didn't ride because I was SEWING all day on an EAGLE COSTUME for my horse! Got the idea from watching the YouTube video of the lady who dressed her black horse up like a Poodle. So my black horse is going to be a Bald Eagle for the Sidney High School Eagles Homecoming parade! Stay tuned!

Peggy Ann said...

9/18/12: 2.28
9/20/12: 4.69
YTD: 466.15

Peggy Ann said...

9/25/12: 2.60
9/28/12: 3.56 PARADE!
9/29/12: 6.71
YTD: 479.02
So, after seeing the YouTube clip of the horse dressed like a Poodle, I decided my black horse would make a great "eagle" for the Homecoming parade at the High School ("eagle" is the mascot of Sidney High). I bought a white fly cover for his ears. I bought a black hood & sewed some white "minky" fabric (kind of a shiny eyelash fur) to the hood to give him an eagle head. I made a beak out of yellow fabric & quilt batting & sewed that to the nose of the hood. I bought feather boas & some white Christmas garland to make a tail (I braided his ample black tail & put it into a white sock as a tail bag, then used shoelaces to tie the feather boas into his tail.) I also made a serape (butt banner) that is maroon & white (school colors) & has the school eagle logo on it. I also made "wings" out of black minky fabric & pinned some black & silver feather boas to the edge of the wings (the wings have a hole in the middle that fits over the saddle horn; they just drape over my legs). Shadowfax was the only horse in the parade; we rode right behind the band, & he did great (aside from occasionally trying to rub off his beak onto his leg...) He was a BIG hit with the kids (who get out of school early to watch the parade & go with their teachers & sit with their class, lining the streets). I took a few photos at home the day before, but I'm hoping someone along the parade route will send me a good one. Now, didn't somebody mention the possibility of a "best costume" award for the Distance Derby??? Think maybe this qualifies??? :)

Peggy Ann said...

10/8/12: 7.91 on Shadow
YTD: 486.21 Nice ride right until dark. Forty degrees, but warmer than the overnights of 20!

Tammy said...

479.02 + 7.91 = 486.93. You shorted yourself a little. :)

JUANITA said...

love, love the eagle costume

Peggy Ann said...

Thanks, Juanita!

Peggy Ann said...

10/12/12: 3.61
YTD: 490.54
Nice sunset ride. The days are getting so short! I hate that!

Peggy Ann said...

10/19/12: 3.21
YTD: 493.75
One of my best days ever. 4 of my 5 (adult) children came to visit, with spouses. All 7 grandchildren. 17 people in my 1100 sq' house. Men went hunting with the Pointer; bagged 7 roosters. Us gals took the grandkids "pony" riding. The older children(5 & 6 yrs)can now ride by themselves in the pony saddle. Daughters & daughters-in-law also put some miles on the horses. Great weather. Great company. Great day. There's nothing like family!

Peggy Ann said...

10/24/12: 5.14 miles on Pate.
10/17/12: 7.20 miles on Shadow
YTD: 506.09
WOO HOO! Passed the 500 mile mark! I was hoping to make 500 miles by my birthday (last Tues.) but didn't quite make it, so I'll take "500 miles by the end of my birthday month". In the 30's today; kind of cold by the time we finished, even with handwarmers in the gloves & boots. Found out that the new winter helmet cover doesn't really keep the ears warm - too much of a gap in the front between the fleece on the outside of the helmet & the skin at the upper cheeks. Still looking for the perfect ear warmer that fits under the helmet! Stuck to the roads today; lots of hunters out for deer season & pheasant.

Peggy Ann said...

That last one should have read "10/27/12".

Peggy Ann said...

11/2/12: 8.21 on Shadow
11/3/12: 7.15 on Pate
YTD: 521.45
Gray, gray, gray days here! Haven't seen the sun in days. Rain comes & goes; riding temps are still above freezing, but not by much. It's still deer season, so I'm still sticking to the roads, but it sure is nice to get out! I'm hoping to reach 600 miles by the end of the year!

Anonymous said...

Hi Peggy Ann,
I was just checking on you to see where you were at for mileage. We are having a nice fall here so far. Dang no riding after work now with daylight savings time gone. I got a new young walker I'm anxious to keep going. She has a good mind and does well when I ride with another horse or two. She's nervous on her own. We are talking about going back to the Black Hills next year - are you game again? Sue Maiwald

Peggy Ann said...

Yes, Sue, I'm game! I'd love to go again. That week we did this year (the week/weekend after Father's Day)was right in the middle of the Montana dog show circuit, and I just can't miss that again with a young dog that needs to finish her Championship, so I might have to go another week. But I'd sure like to do it again with you guys! Good luck with your new Walker!

Peggy Ann said...

11/10/12: 7.08
YTD: 528.53
OK, so with the early sunset I just can't go riding after work, but today I was wishing I had! We had a good blizzard here last night (12"), and it continued snowing most of the AM, with temps hovering around 10 - 15 F and wind chills @ zero. I went out on Shadow anyway, wearing my warmest gear! (Can't make 600 if I don't ride!) Shadow was full of himself: when we made the hay field & I first asked for a trot, he gave me a straight up & down lope-in-place; if he wasn't so black I could have sworn he was a Lipizzaner! We had a nice ride; it was great when the wind was at my back, but when we faced it, it was a "prayer wind" (head bowed, eyes closed!) Very beautiful snow. More snow expected tonight; temps are predicted to be in the single digits or below zero for the next few days. Glad I got in at least a few miles!

Peggy Ann said...

11/21/12: 9.15 on Shadow
11/23/12: 8.06 on Pate (including parade)
11/24/12: 2.59 on Shadow
YTD: 548.33
We got out of school (work) @ 1 on Wed, so I got in a wonderful ride on a lovely, sunny day. It's still deer rifle season here, so I still stick to the roads, and the roads were a bit icy.
Yesterday I rode Pate in the AM as a warm-up for the Christmas Parade, then spent a few hours preparing battery-operated lights for the horse & dog for the parade. Red lights down the headstall & bit then loop back to my horn saddle bags (the lights look like reins). Another battery pack is in the cantle bag, with the lights pinned to the saddle blanket. I wrapped Pate's legs with track bandages & duct-taped the battery packs to the wraps, then wrapped the lights around the legs & pinned to the wraps (front legs only). The dogs wear Christmas coats with a battery pack taped to their collar & the lights pinned to the coats. Since I don't have anyone to shuttle my trailer to the end of the parade, it's a long ride for us (2 miles) back to the trailer - in the dark - down the back neighborhood streets. Pate is SUCH a good horse!

Peggy Ann said...

12/8/12 4.44 miles on Pate
YTD: 552.77
Didn't get to ride last weekend nor during the week, so today I had to ride at least a little! It was pretty much a blizzard; I thought it was winding down, but by the time I got myself dressed with all the warm gear & brushed the ice chunks off of Pate's back & got him saddled, the wind had kicked up again. 18 degrees, wind chill 6. Maybe six" of snow on the ground. Pate is such a good horse, but he's always been "resistant" to "unreasonable requests", so he was not too pleased with having to face into the blizzard going out! We were both covered with ice by the time we got back. The Dalmatians weathered it well - as long as they keep moving, their tails are up & they are happy! I think we were all pretty cold by the time we got back in, though! Got to make that 600 mile mark! Time is running out!

Peggy Ann said...

12/15/12: 7.07 miles
YTD: 559.84
What a beautiful day! 22 degrees, bright sunlight & blue skies, frost on the trees from the fog the night before; the world blanketed in white. Can't you just hear, "Oh What A Beautiful Morning"!! The dirt roads were snowpacked but not icy; the forest was quiet and sparkling. Deer, hawks, & a brave little squirrel. Great ride!

Peggy Ann said...

12/22/12: 4.73 miles on Pate
YTD: 564.57
Zero degrees when I got up this AM; waited until the temp got up to 10 to ride today! Breezy & COLD! I was just rounding the hay field to come home, and I saw an eagle in the trees up ahead. I was singing out loud at the time (I do that sometimes when I know no one is around), and I SWEAR that eagle cocked his head to listen to me! Since he seemed to be listening, I kept singing as I rode almost right under him, & he didn't even fly away! So, if you want to get close to an eagle, just sing a Shakira song as you ride by! :)

Peggy Ann said...

12/24/12: 3.20 on Shadow
YTD: 567.77
Just a few more miles. The weather is not cooperating with my goal! At 5 degrees, I couldn't stay out very long, and couldn't work Shadow very hard! But when the wind was at my back, it was a lovely ride!

Peggy Ann said...

12/26/12: 2.39 on Shadow
YTD: 570.16
Zero degrees. I went in to work for about 4 hours; looked outside to see the sun shining, & thought it MUST be in the double digits by now (after a sub-zero AM, but alas, it was still only up to ZERO... so I thought, well, I need to walk the dogs. I need my exercise. Do I ride the horse with the dogs (giving me very little exercise) or do I cross-country ski with the dogs? I opted for the horse! Bareback, to keep warmer & to reduce time in the cold (saddling leaves me very cold). It was too cold to stay out long, though, so we just did our loop around the hay field at a slow jog (can't work him too hard because it's too cold to bring him in hot). Could NOT keep my hands warm (even with the heat packets in the gloves). Had to ball up my fingers around the heat packets in the gloves & ride with the looped reins cradled in the crook of my elbows & my hands against my chest.

It's not looking good for making 600. Not enough days left. Temps too cold for long rides. (Husband says a frozen nose would not be a good idea...). Darn!

Peggy Ann said...

12/27/12: 10.1 miles on Shadow
YTD: 580.26

11 degrees! Lovely ride in the woods & snow. Scared up a dozen deer; two nice bucks (whitetail). Also came upon 3 poached carcasses with antlers cut off. I don't understand some people!

Peggy Ann said...

12/28/12: 10.3 on Pate
YTD: 590.56
WOOOO! Less than 10 to go! I might make it to 600 after all! It was 9 when I started today, but the sun was shining & I'm guessing it got up to 15 while I was on the ride. Tomorrow should be even warmer - let's hope I can make it out!

Christine said...

You CAN do it easily!! :)

Jamie said...

Oh yeah, you have this in the bag!

Peggy Ann said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Peggy Ann said...

12/19/12: 10.4 on Shadow
YTD: (drumroll...) 600.96
YIP YIP YIP YEE HAAAAAAW! Got 'er DONE! Temps in the 20's (although with the wind, it didn't feel as warm as yesterday @ 15). Took a nice ride out to 7 Sisters; took my camera because Tammy Vasa keeps getting these great photos & I wanted to have some of my own! Rode out one of my "side trips" to Crane Creek where I found the poached deer carcasses the other day... when I rounded the loop & turned to come back up the hill, I happened to look up... & there were TWO BALD EAGLES sitting in a tree, looking down at us! So I circled the horse a few times while I fumbled to get the SLR camera out of the saddle bags... the eagles stayed still for me while I fumbled! Then I stopped to take a few shots... moved forward a bit... took a few more... forward again... then moved in under the tree a bit closer... that was too much for them, and they took flight, but WOW did I get a few nice shots! (posted on the horsetrailriders Facebook page). Awesome. Continued on the ride with all the side trips so I could pass that magic marker of 600 miles. Done and DONE! :) Nothing like reaching a goal that you really ENJOY! :)