Western Pleasure Guest Ranch is truly a family owned and operated ranch. The owners, Roley and Janice, will likely cook and serve you breakfast each morning. Their children will saddle your horse and guide you through the valleys and vistas of the ranch that was their childhood playground. Their grandchildren will play with your children when you stay at the ranch, teaching them where the best hiding spots are for a game of Sardines, and sharing their favorite horse with your child. There is no corporate safety net, trust fund, or bottomless pocket. What you see here on the ranch is us sharing our home and our love of the western lifestyle with you.
Family ties hold us together; connecting us across time to those who came before us. Connecting us to those whose decisions about life have affected the direction of our own life. Their dedication to hopes, dreams, and goals in life leave a legacy to us who follow. The idea of being who you are because of the choices someone else made years before you were born may seem stifling to some, but not for me. I will be forever grateful for the pioneer spirit of my great great great grandparents who first settled in the place I now call home.
I can relate to Charlie Brown’s little sister, Sally, when she declares, after trying in vain to apply multiple layers of winter clothes, “I wasn’t made for winter!” Know that while capturing the following photos, I either looked like the Micheline Man, or I was acquiring frostbite.
It seems winter may have begun to move in here in the northern panhandle of Idaho. It is a beautiful day from where I sit here at my kitchen table, warm and cozy. My view of the foothills of the Cabinet Mountain Range and the valley full of the ranch pasture land is missing one thing today: the horses. Our herd of 50+ horses just made their last run up the county road from the field to the barn for the winter. They are all tucked away in their winter housing close to the barns and an abundant supply of hay.
Saturday marked the half way point through my 30 days of Clinton Anderson Fundamentals groundwork on my little 3 year old Appaloosa/POA gelding, Zeus. After a good long session working pretty much entirely on desensitization, I decided he was ready to ride. It was nice to be in the saddle again. I will continue with the promised 30 days of groundwork with the addition of a little time under saddle.
Ground work is not a completely unknown to me. I have spent time working my horses from the ground (especially the babies). Usually this ground time is broken up by time on my horse’s back riding down the trail, working in the arena, working cows or teaching lessons (yes,I teach horseback). So why am I on the ground? I have been sentenced to 30+ days of groundwork.
Well folks it is official, Western Pleasure Guest Ranch is now open for trail rides for the 2015 season! I took a couple on the first official spring trail ride of the year this morning. It was a beautiful day, temps in the high 40’s, and clear blue sky as far as you could see. This calls for Danielle’s Excited Face:
Part 3 of Winter Arena Exercises is going to be pretty simple. Stand in your stirrups while riding. That’s it. Whether you are out in the pouring rain or lucky enough to be in an indoor arena, take the opportunity to build those leg muscles (yours) and improve your balance at the same time.
While the Northeast part of the U.S. is being covered by a massive snow fall, we here in the Northwest are beginning to wonder if its time to brush up on our nautical skills. If you feel the need to review your boat rowing, here is an excellent link to show you how: How to Row a Boat
Yesterday was beautiful. As we were driving to Post Falls, Landon kinda reminded me of a happy lab that has been stuck in a dark house for a week straight and then gets taken out into the sunshine for a ride in the pickup with the windows down. He was that excited about the sunshine. Which brings me to this: