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

Monday, January 27, 2014

Rediscovering Old Trails~

Gated paving of future development
Instead of taking our usual route out, I decided to go south,  through the paved future development & back to the area of the removed fencing & access the power line trail further south than I had been able to.    I knew there was a way around this gate, so we headed down the paved streets.
Our paved trail~
The major features of this area now, are the "Drainage Basins" which I've mentioned several times before.
Drainage Basin - on of three in just a short distance~
So ugly, so wasteful, of what had been an area so rich in natural flowing water, salmon streams etc.
Doesn't this look like a "Natural Area" to you?
Even the Beaver have returned in the years since they were first "removed".  I hated having them either killed or moved.  It took away some of the "life" in the area for a long time.  Now that they're back - they are taking full advantage of the bridged road over the creek.
Newly forming Beaver Dam under the road~
Some water is still getting through - but the area is flooding out -  becoming another "new" wetland!  :-) 
Another ugly Drainage Basin - nothing too natural looking about this...
I always get a little sickened going through here - but it might be one of the last times, so I wanted to record how it looks "now".

I had another surprise though, as we headed toward the removed gate, I saw another of our old trails - looking like it had seen some current use.  I'd checked it out months ago & it was blocked by downed trees.  Even so, trail is trail - so we took it.
Old Trail
 This was a trail that Butch & I cleared years ago on the Fourth-of-July - so that became the trails name.  Felt really strange to be on it again - all the way out I was wondering if it would still go all the way through.   It did!
Our old "Clover Hill"
In days of old, this was "Clover Hill", covered with clover & fresh grass, the creek flowed beautifully through here & we would take our break at this spot.
A beautiful Creek flows through it~
Every time I come into one of the areas that are still somewhat "natural" I am amazed at the diversity of this area.  It is a water producing Narnia - even in a dry year.   Now I knew that we'd be back out on the power line shortly & we were.
Out to the lines, looking NW
We turned south yet again -
Power Lines - going south
Easy traveling out here, the day was getting colder, but I wanted to see just how far we could get & there had been another set of trails.  We found them, the ATV's had made the way easy to find.
More great trail~
Riding along this section, I remembered the day that Butch & Jas were leading the way as we had explored this.
Another Spectacular Wetland
Just stunning beautiful water all around us!  At one point the Beaver's had dammed things up enough that the water was flowing over the trail & Farah went right through.  I was pretty sure there had been an old bridge up ahead & soon we came to it.
Gone...  we weren't going any further~
So, with the rest of the trail inaccessible, we turned back - out to the power line & south.  Once out there again, we tried a trail to the west, but it was blocked.   Then came to the "end" - where we could see horses in a corral.
White roof & horses~
For whatever reason, this is where Farah lost her mind.  She started puffing herself up & gave out a huge SNORT!  I could feel a whole LOT going on under me, so decided to dismount.

(When we'd first left home, we were down to the bottom of our place when I remembered that I hadn't put Nika's electronic collar on!  Back up the hill to do the deed.   Then - when I was on the trails - & remembered that I had forgotten my stick!  Sure wasn't going back again...  Then - I went to take the first photo - with the new little camera & bought from Linda's store close out.  I'd forgotten to put the newly charged battery in it!  It seems in life, when a day goes sideways - it usually does it in a big way!)

Without my stick I just let her trot around me in little circles, then she'd stop - look that direction & let out another HUGE HUFF!  Finally - I gave her a cookie - food takes her mind off about anything else & began walking back the way we'd come.  Once mounted, I started for our far north trail home.  It was already later than I liked.

We got to the trail & found it BLOCKED!  A new gate installed, locked - three t-posts next to it, covered with barbed wire.  An attempt to keep the ATV's back out.  This seems strange though - since the lower gate has stayed wide open.  Whoever, had also cut down a large Alder on the inside of the gate - branches everywhere...  No way to get around & dark coming quick - we had the entire way to retrace to get back in & head home!  In the dark, on the paving - we were trotting - when two small lights popped up at the Beaver dam under the road!  The two people that I'd met last week, out walking in the dark.  Farah did just GREAT on our first night ride!  The trot stayed consistent, I tipped my head down so that my bill would deflect the branches that we couldn't see.

It was completely dark by the time I went through Pat's - she came to the door to tell me I was out late!  We were home just before 6 p.m. & Butch again came in right behind us.  No... he wasn't happy about us still being out, me wearing back & no reflective gear.  Guess we'll have to put something in the saddle bag in case we're caught out again.  If I'd gone my usual route, we would have come to that north gate first!  Now I want to call & see if I can have a key - since it will soon be my only way to access the lines...  Ah... Progress...


  1. Out after dust unexpectedly wearing nothing but dark riding gear on a dark bay horse... yep been there done that... boy was that stressful when I had to do some road riding to get home!
    I have these little NiteIze SpotLit LED dog lights clipped front and back on my saddle for riding at dusk or in case I get caught out after dark. It really helps make me more visible to fast Mt Bikers riding in the dark woods too. I just leave them clipped on the saddle all the time so they will be there when I need them.


  2. No fun - that's for sure... Thanks for the link! Going to order some!


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