Thursday, August 20, 2015

Ride stuff!

I've got lots to catch up, especially as I was tagged in a blog hop. But first things first, my venture to Ortonville State Recreation Area!

On tuesday I was up super early. Kaylee had woken up at 5 am and even though I got her back to sleep, I just could not sleep myself. I had the truck all packed the night before so all I needed to do was make sure that I could get everyone onto the truck and trailer and leave before 8 am. Simple, right?

It actually wasn't that bad, hah!  Kaylee was still passed out, so I went down to the barn and grabbed Gwyn. She loaded relatively quickly and easily. I drove the truck and trailer around to the front of the house, opened the side window and left Gwyn to her hay while I went inside to wake Kaylee up.

My plan obviously involved making Gwyn just stand in the trailer, but as my friend Cortney always said, it's good for horses to practice 'grocery shopping'.

Anyway, I got Kaylee dressed and fed, then we piled into the truck and were out the door perfectly on time! It normally takes 25 minutes or so to get to her gymnastics camp in Oxford and I gave myself more like 40 since I was hauling. I was still super early. Got Kaylee situated, then up the road Gwyn and I went to the state park. It was only 15 minutes away, I mentally made sure I was planning to be leaving by 30 min prior to pick up.

The area I was riding in can also be used for hunting so I made sure we were wearing safety colors! Gwyn had some gear and I was wearing an orange safety vest over my tank top.

These are also reflective. And huge. They would easily fit on top of splint boots.

Noseband reflector safety yellow

See? Portions used for hunting.

Off we go!

There are two parking areas. One is for day use, which is where I parked, the other is for campers. The trail from day use takes you to the campground and from there you pick up the rest of the trail. The flies were already awful and there was a HUGE black horse fly that kept bombing Gwyn while I was tacking up. Thankfully it disappeared while we rode, but instead we were harrassed by swarms of deer flies. Ugh. Thank goodness I had a fly mask with ears for Gwyn. Unfortunately, it's a little too big so they were getting under the mask  up at her poll :(

Campground and pavilion

Trails. The junctions were well marked and there was a map at each intersection, thankfully.

Alas, the trails had patches of deep mud with tractor tire marks. It was shoe sucking mud, thank goodness we were barefoot, but Gwyn was still not a fan.

This was on a downhill slope and was in a gully of the trail. Gwyn wanted to everything but go down where it looked the best. Finally she listened, but this was a sticky point.

Then we got to this. You may think, "Oh, that looks like a simple stream to step across and a scary horse eating bridge."  Gwyn would say, "NO! That is a scary horse eating stream and I would rather clomp across the bridge thankyouverymuch."  (I made her cross the stream on the way back)

Nice open spot

Pond marshy area. There was a lot of stagnant pond scum water. It was also super humid.

Something dead that was covered in maggots.

Second junction. 

Gwyn double checks the map too

Crazy rocks

There was a huge pile on the side of the trail.

Full gear

Me and my vest

I got a 35 gallon water tank for these rides so I can sponge Gwyn off and offer her water. We haven't done any distance that has made her super thirsty but at least it's there.

Gravity works, yo

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