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

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Heart Lake!

Covered by the algae bloom~
It was a perfect morning!  Someone turned on nature's air conditioner!  My kind of weather!  Overcast, cool & cloudy when I left home to meet-up with Jack & Lynn in Arlington.  From there we headed on over to Antacortes for a long anticipated ride on the Heart Lake Trails.
Lynn sprays Sophie!
Once at the parking area - even though the cloud cover was still there - we could see it was breaking up & the bugs were out in force!  Sophie sported a "Quiet Ride" fly mask & it seemed to work great for her - even if she was the blunt of a few remarks :-)
Directional Signage
With so many trails to choose from, we decided to try to make our way to Whistle Lake - Lynn had the maps & did a great job of guiding us.  This is technical riding, lots of up, down, all around & a few large rocks to navigate.  The trail surfaces were not only dry - but very hard packed from all the mountain bikes that frequent this area now.  We passed several groups of kids, hiking up to swim in the lake, they said they envied us our "rides"!  :-)  On the steep downhills, the mares had to sit down & slide.
Farah listening to the kids yelling as they jumped in!
I was disappointed in my photos - for whatever reason my little camera blurred several.  Others were crystal clear...  Regardless - here's a look of one of the beautiful trails.
Wooded trails~
 Such a perfect day to be on these trails!  We didn't see any other horses, but when we returned to the parking area, there was one other trailer.  It was pretty obvious that this area gets a lot of visitors on the weekends.  Lucky us - able to ride during the week.  
Farah & Connie & a HUGE Douglas Fir!
 It took a while, navigating the trail system.  We've for sure figured out #207!  :-)  In just under ten-miles - we managed 1,447ft. of elevation gain!  People wondered how Diane kept her horse fit?  Not!  Both mares got a good workout, though neither even broke much of  a sweat.  Farah just keeps getting stronger & smarter - still taking a second look at dark patches at the edge of the trail - but - has never refused me anything.  Feeling lucky, very lucky to have her for my partner!

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