Ain't nuthin like ridin' a fine horse in a new country - Augustus McCrae – Lonesome Dove

Monday, January 20, 2014

Hoof Prints = Bad News~

We head up to the trails~
I woke to more fog...  socked in... & cold - 30.  Not too exciting...  So - caught up on chores, then - after lunch - the Sun broke through & the day turned Beautiful!  Saddle-up time for sure!  I was looking forward to a ride from home, it had been awhile since I'd seen our trails.
Hoof prints!
It had also been a Very Long while since we'd seen any hoof prints - besides our own!  I was flat out amazed!  We followed them for quite a way - they were heading up to the power lines.  It was cold up under the trees, but the air smelled fresh & sweet.
Our trails~
As we made the turn on the trail that comes out on the power lines - I was still following the prints.  Once under the lines though - the rock was so heavy that I couldn't tell which way they'd gone.
Out into the Sun~
We turned north, I wanted to see how one of my favorite wetlands had fared.   There were a few trees down from the wind & rain, but nothing that we couldn't easily get over.
Wetland~  Still as a mirror
It was gorgeous, almost warm out in the sunshine.  Farah found some green grass growing, so I let her graze for a while before we turned back.  I decided to head all the way down the hill on the power lines to see if I could pick up any trail.  Once there, we made the turn onto the paved roads of the future development that's been fenced off for several years now.  Surprise!
The gate & fence were GONE!
The gate used to be just where you can see the "leaf line" on the paving.  We rode forward & spoke to the couple that live in the house on the right.  I asked about the fence & was told that it was taken down last Fri.  Also, that people from there had ridden their horses back the way I'd come - so that answered that question.  They'd come in from the south - now that it's no longer blocked off.  Rumor has it that the development will start this year & all of the proposed housing developments that have been on hold due to the economy are now going to be built.
Our shadow photo :-)
Needless to say - I felt sickened.  Now that it's open & open up to the continuation of the power line trail again - I'll have to go back & ride where I haven't been able to in forever - until it is gone...
I felt subdued on our way home.  Listening to the silence, the birds, absorbing the aloneness that I crave & will miss from the center of my soul.   Twenty plus years we've ridden here - in the days there were just tiny trails through the blackberry, through the years of logging & ecological disaster, then through the years of  reprieve that have Not lasted long enough...
Heading home~
I've heard older people say that they feel they have lived beyond their time & never really understood it until lately....  Thinking of it all gone, going to yet more homes, yards, streets, noise & clutter.  People have to have places to live - but to see the sprawl come closer & closer...  Makes me want to find somewhere farther away...  When we moved here - our friends asked "Why"?  Why would we want to live so far out?  Now...  it's not far enough...


  1. What a beautiful place -- the wetland especially. I can see why you'd hate to see it change. :(

  2. It's so sad when developers come in and clear the wooded areas and destroy the trails. Last summer we met some people up at heady rd for a ride--they had recently been up there and found nice trails to show us-- and the majority of the trail system was gone due to logging. They had just been up there 2 weeks prior too!

    I heard the logging began up at blanchard :( Haven't been up there in months, afraid to see how it looks.

    Enjoy your trails while you can!!

  3. Oh, I'm so sorry for you. They slowly developed the woodlands behind my house when I was a kid, and every new house was heartbreaking. I know what you mean about craving the solitude!

  4. That IS bad news :( Bummer...

  5. I share your feelings. Many of the trails that I could ride from my front gate just six years ago have been blocked by new houses. It makes me very sad, too.


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