Saturday, January 9, 2016

Start to the Year

On January 1st, K, Eddy, myself and J started out year out the right way. We did a 7.75 mile ride at Chatfield in the snow.

We had sunshine, but temps in the upper 20's

 K riding in her full length Carhartts.
She and Eddy match.

The footing was somewhat sketchy, so we did a lot of walk and trot.
Tiny bit of canter, but not much.

 Magpie. Tree.
It doesn't get much better than that.

 Favorite Chatfield trail every.

 It got a lot colder along the river bank and there were a couple of places where we went off trail because I couldn't see the trail, which was right on the edge. We didn't want to risk the edge collapsing under us.

Just about two hours of riding for 7.75 miles.

On Saturday, we did it again, only this time we hauled to TMR, paid the usury fee, and rode the Fairmont trail. That was one of the trails we hadn't had a chance to ride with K and figured we should before she left TMR. On top of that, we wanted to limit the amount of time we were out, since the boy is skiing again and we had to pick him up at a set time.

 Top of Fairmont trail looking at North Table Mountain.

 The footing was worse on Saturday for J. There was a lot of ice under the top layer of snow.

 K and Eddy looking out over the vista.

We did a lot of walk, trot and some decent cantering in all of the normal places. When we got close to Tucker Lake, we had a decision to make. We could go over the bridge (there were pedestrian walkers approaching from the other side) or we could take the horse trail through a slight, very wide ditch, and up the other side. My gut told me to go over the bridge. I ignored my gut in favor of trying to race up the hillside. That was a mistake as both horses scrambled, slipping and sliding, up that hill. It was muddy and deep. K said Eddy almost went down. Ashke felt off afterwards. Not by a lot, but a little. I thought he might have strained his hamstring (always a possibility) and made him take it easy for the rest of the ride. J couldn't see anything, but I could feel that slight hesitation in his stride. 

K saw this in the snowbank on the inside of the canal we rode back along. There was a drift of snow from the far side of the top of the bank to the bottom of the canal. In the snow was an imprint of a story: Mouse tracks to the right. Hawk impact to the left.

So, like a snow angel, we have a hawk angel.
You can see the feather demarcations on the left, the head and body to the right and bottom.
One of the coolest things I've ever seen. 
K thinks it might be a kestrel, but I think it was a Redtail. 

 Been awhile since I rode that trail. And a great way to start the year. Here's to lots more trails.

1 comment:

  1. Best way to start the year, but cold! Hope Ashke is ok after slip sliding, mud/ice can be tricky.