No, we are not leaning...but my horseback photographer was! I was on my third ride out of Simpson's Ranch, where I moved Bart to last week. I loved in at Don's Nine Iron Ranch, but he sold his ranch and the other horses had left, so I was left with no one to ride with, and I don't feel that riding alone in the desert is the safest choice to make.
So last week I hauled Bart to Simpsons. He had to give up his big turnout for a 14x14 pen, but he didn't seem to mind. He was able to watch all the action with riders, ropers, sheep, cows and horses and seemed content. And because I now have lots of new friends to ride the hills with, he gets lots of excercise and probably enjoys snoozing in his smaller digs.
But now, the snowbirds are starting to head north, and the ranch is really thinning out. It is crowded with trailers, trucks, hay bales, roping equipment, and other horse toys in the winter months, but now I see empty stalls, lots of open spaces where trailers had been parked, and less activity. Some of the larger stalls will now be available, so I will move Bart into one of them this week.
I have met some really nice people, and one is Bets, an 84 year old woman who lives near me and has a pretty dun mare named Sweet Pea, which is a little joke, since the mare's disposition is not quite that sweet! Bets is a great rider and has ridden the mountains around the ranch for years, so knows them well. I enjoy having her point out the various wild flowers that are now blooming prolifically throughout the desert, and also she has spotted gila monsters near the trails. I'm hoping her sharp eye will see the first snake before I do, too!!!