Can you believe it is that time of year again already! Scheduling around bar exam's, master's degrees, and rodeo schedules...Miss Melina, Beautiful Brit, & myself finally found a date that would work to go on the annual ride. The plan was get the the ranch Monday, spend night & ride on Tuesday. Well, after talking to an exhausted group of girls Monday morning we decided to bump it back a day. After a fun filled Saturday at the Mud Lake Rodeo....that was A-OK with me also!
J2 was rather relieved also I think. He's such a stinker. I had told him when we were going so that he could come. The next thing I know he's hopped a ride to his cousins house in Richfield for the week. I was trying to track down a trailer when I made this discovery. Anyway the little con-artist called his Mom & Dad bawling in the middle of the night because he really wanted to come. Who am I to turn down a crying kid, the con worked! The day was already looking full with preperation for the ride, saddles, horses, food, ect. A huge Thank you to my Aunt Crystal who drove to Richfield & pick J2 up & I just had to get him from Arco. It was a huge help & saved me alot of driving! Don't worry, it was still 2 hours round trip. I asked the little hooligan why he didn't come back with Nathan (that's who he road over there with)???? This was his reply "I had to wait to get my Orange Crush rope"....seriously! Karen made him a deal that if he would help her, he could get a new rope. I've got to give the kid kuddos for knowing how to work the system! Truth be told, it was well worth every mile, J2 is hilarious & kept us entertained the entire time!
Melina arrived in Hamer before I got back from picking up J2 so she got in the pickup & headed to get horses. (ya, she's awesome!) A huge thank you to Richard & Chris Nelson for letting us borrow horses. I got to ride Chris's big white horse. He is big, solid, smooth, gentle, and was a pleasure to ride. Also, thank you to Wade & Nancy for helping me get ready & letting us borrow their pickup & horse trailer. Last but certainly not least, thank you to Reggarooni for always checking on me no matter what the task at hand is! Our ride wouldn't have been possible without you all, thanks again!
Loaded up & on the road, a few hours behind schedule....shocking for me, I know ;) Brit knew how we roll so she made sure she didn't arrive too early. :) By the time we arrived at Uncle Lynn's, he probably thought we were trying to starve him down! :) Melina & I got to work on putting up the horses, setting up camp & most importantly...dinner! It was all of 10 o'clock before any food was dished up but I'm pretty sure my cooking tastes better in the dark :) Kinda like the mood lighting in fancy restaurants...except ours was the head lights of Uncle Lynn's 4-wheeler ;) We even had the pleasure of having company at our humble meal. Uncle Lynn had a semi load of hay arrive just before dark, Colton Hansen was driving the big rig. Not gonna lie….he almost ran over the tipi trying to get back into the stack! We cordially moved it before he had to drive back out. Poor guy, pretty sure he had already eaten dinner but was just too nice to shoot a camp full of cute girls down. He said it was good food.
It was a glorious night up the Lodge that night. Brittani saw so many shooting stars I think she ran out of wishes! The moonlight lit up the canyon wall just along the sky line….almost just like it was cued up perfectly for us. The 1st day of Fall isn't until September 22 but someone forgot to tell Mother Nature because as huddled around the dwindling charcoals from dinner there was definitely a chill in the air. Tipi bound, bedrolls & the warmth of tipi walls were calling our names. I would like to say it was a rest full night but anyone who has ever spent the night with J2 ….knows that would be a lie! That kid works harder all night than most people even dream about in the day ;) He yells orders, sits up, kicks, tosses, turns & pretty much carries out a full day’s activities every night. At one point in the night I remember putting my hand on his head & telling him to STOP!
Aww, morning, glorious morning when you are so tired that you are sound asleep!Love that!.....until you hear….not to alarm you but the gate is down & I only see 1 of the 3 horses….AAAAAWWWW! In true rodeo form, Melina & I head out with sweat pants shot gunned in cowboy boots to see if we can find the horses. I say in true rodeo form because it reminded me of being at slack & rolling out in my pj’s….mainly because there was a hunter in the yard I didn’t know as I strolled through the yard in my pj’s…awesome ;)
Not to worry, the Uncle Lynn had seen the horses in for water that morning & closed the gate on them for us. Breakfast of Champions, Brit & Melina provided a smorgasbord of dining options & all were delicious! Thank you! Clean up camp, repack trailer, saddle horses & load up for trail head….or a few tourist pics on the way to trail head ;) We stopped at the doctor’s place to take the traditional Medicine Lodge Sign pic. (fyi: Don’t park in the middle of the road, even when you think no one is around….you will inevitably attract traffic, just sayin ;)
The ride was awesome! It was a beautiful day. We went at our own speed & soaked in the day. All the moisture this year made for a green & glorious ride! The meadows are lush and wild flowers are abundant. The sound of the creek rushing down the mountain & your horses hitting the ground is the only thing that can be heard for miles…well that is until I get a huge bug on me…then you have to throw a little screaming into the mix ;) It was a great day!
We are riding along & J2 says Stop! Stop! There is a huge bug on you. I had just brushed something biting me off my neck…a horse fly I’m pretty sure. Well, J2 starts yelling…I take off my hat & am yelling!!! have my camera in my hand & am hitting my hat on my horses neck to try to get this mammoth beast off my hat!!! FYI….my horse didn’t really appreciate that …anyway, I give Brit the camera & try to wipe it off on her…she didn’t think that was a good idea…..aww, what I wouldn’t give for a good Stoecklein book right now! Finally I shook him loose but the gross little bugger was persistant!
Other excitement on the trip consisted of a treasure hunt! 1/3 of the way back to the truck Melina looks down & her brand new camera is missing!!! Aww….the hunt begins….riding back & forth…looking, looking, looking…..walking, walking, walking….riding, riding, riding, ……looking, looking, looking. At that speed & you become painfully aware of the number of snakes that are slithering by you unnoticed. Well, I told Melina,If we can find Kacie’s diamond in spilled popcorn at the DCNFR, I’m sure her camera will be a piece of cake! Well with a little prayer & a whole lot of faith….there the camera was!!!! Aww, what a relief & blessing…I’d hate to lose all those great pictures ;)
Thank you again to everyone who made our ride possible. Nancy & Wade Durham, Uncle Lynn Hoggan, Richard Nelson family & Kevin Carpenter family. Most importantly, thank you to Beautiful Brittani Brusett & Melina Melina, & J2 for taking the time to come!
p.s. I was going to have a J2 quote section but that kid is so funny I just couldn’t narrow it down. He is hilarious…you might need a translator…but if you get one he is a funny bugger ;)
10% off Lil' Red Roan orders for the month of August!
(Martiny Saddle Co. products not included)
A picture is worth a 1,000 words so I will let them tell our story much better than I ever could.