Friday, December 23, 2011

Snow. Owls. Goats. Dogs. Horses. Dad. Hills. Snow

Happy Holidays!
Merry Christmas!

It has been awhile since I have added anything to the story of the weed eating goat. 
I left the managing and herding of the Horned Locusts to my dad in July and have moved to Bernalillo with Kino where I have been dealing with some health issues and gotten some rest.
 I am beginning to feel more together finally after six months off and have ridden with dad and the crew a few times back on the land around SunStar. The photos here are from Tuesday, this being Friday. 

We were treated to a lovely sight- a great big Great Horned Owl.
Unfortunately I only got his wing. Here he is waving at the camera.

Dad took the opportunity to take the goats south into the rough canons and steep hills. 

There they ate some Winterfat, Sage, Grasses, Ephedra, anything that stuck above the snow.

Chopo and I sit above a deep arroyo overlooking one of the biggest Ephedra plants I know of out here.

The goats can climb hills oh so much better and faster than the horses with monkeys on their backs. But we took our time and worked our way up to the mesa top, secure in the knowledge that the herd had it's company of five Maremmas and one old Pyrenese/Akita/German Shepherd.

The little dogs travel with the herders and are a quick nose to regain a herd. 
Though today tracking the hundred or so goats is no issue in the snow.

On top of the mesa the goats circle around traveling slowly south moving from one Mistletoe tree to another and from Cholla to Cholla with dad keeping the course atop the mesa and south.

I think this is Swirly, my mom's dog, who is proving himself to be a devoted goat dog.

Alphabet and Bullwinkle check out Zuli as she makes snow dog angels.

And Swirly must go off to investigate...

Swirly has been working on making friends with Chopo.

I love how these dogs move with paws bent. So much in their element here in the cold and snow.

Without Maremmas this is a very difficult world. 
With livestock one must have safety measures- either a good tall fence. Or some good tall dogs.
Out on the range there is no replacing these big white protectors.
This is a safe herd-and the coyotes know it!


Pecos and her Buddy!

Happy dogs! 
Gentle Giants!
But not someone to cross!

Cholla buds!!

Returning home first east...

Then north down Camino Cerro Chato.

This is a boy in love with his goats. 

Down the big hill above SunStar.

This road looked fine when we went down with the goats, but within an hour had started icing over some vehicle tracks which had been made after the goats passed through. 
I couldn't get past a steeper part (making ice under my tires as I went) and slid back a few times. 
The third time I tried I ended up about here, where there is no bank to keep one on the road... 
I called my dad and handed the reins to him. 
He tried- experienced what I was up to- (over my head) and then backed the truck down. 
Not enough weight in the back of the truck, highway tires.
The next morning with chains on got out no problem.

Good visit, glad to see the dogs, goats and horses looking well, and happy.
No kids yet- but soon... 
Glad I didn't fall off the hill. I'd hate to be the first one to do it...

1 comment:

  1. Great story, Ammie... Nice to see the land under snow and the busy goats and dogs. And the people, too....looks cold, though. Glad you didn't slide off the edge.