Monday, January 23, 2012

Mother and Daughter GoatWalk

Mom and I took the goats out together one day last week. 
Dad got the afternoon off and mom and I had a great time out on the land with the critters.

Bucky and his Maremma entourage guided the crew out... 

Rocky sits calmly within the herd watching for coyotes, dogs or anything else.

Mom and Chopo are getting along pretty well these days it would seem. 

Rocky came by to say hi to Chopo,

And also greeted Pecos. He likes to be friends with everyone.

Swirly then came to say hi to mom. He is a sweetie and loves his bosses!

Curly also greeted mom. Curly is a happy mama dog these days.

Curly made a joyful dash when the herd turned back towards home at the farthest point north of the day. 

Rocky and Swirly pass by mom and Chopo on their way back to the herd.... 

While Kaya leads the last goat over the hill to the herd.

Mom and Chopo run down the hill...

And Pecos and I walk along after the goats.

The boys check on a neighbor's barking dog and evaluate the danger- there is none.

Curly decides it is time to go back to her pups. She takes a last look at the herd before trotting back southward and home. This is her second day out since whelping 4 days earlier. 
She is a little torn between staying with the goats and going home, but mama-hood calls.

Her brothers crest the hill with goats and see her white shape running home along the ridge in the distance. At first they are unsure what it is it seems, but they bark a bit, she turns back and they see that it is their sister.

Bullwinkle and Swirly watch her as she disappears out of sight while Alphabet watches the goats.

Guppy has been following Pecos and I the whole walk, watching the goats all the while.

Toward the end of the walk she began to try out some herding of her own. 
Unsure at first she became increasingly confident watching Zuli and backing up Buck.

She waited until Buck moved a goat or group with obvious intent so she knew who to move where and would come behind him and follow the goats into the herd- stopping when they were in the group where they should be. She was impressive with her strength, softness and feeling of when to turn off.

She enjoyed having effect on the goats.

Here Buck is bunching the goats- stopping them from continuing north in preparation for turning them back south. Guppy helps going around the outside in a circling motion just like her mama Zuli tends to do.

She races a little around them while they watch her- surprised at the new blue dog's moves.

Buck slowly finishes the job, working calmly.

Guppy tries out some more herding.

All together now.

Zuli and Guppy oriented the goats headed home. They circled the herd in opposite directions. I wondered if mutt-Guppy would have much instict/drive, looks like she does, but is just more reserved in the way she acts, preferring to have a plan before acting. She watches and studies. Is very gentle but has presence enough to get the job done pretty easily.

It was a very enjoyable day. I like the ease with which my mom tackles the terrain these days. 
I Love to see her on horseback herding the goaties and hanging with the Maremmas. 

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

New year's Day Ride Part Two: Afternoon Horse Ride by Sonia

This is a very special blog today. 

Josh and Dawn and Sonia came for Dinner and got to go horseback riding first!
Sonia wanted to ride the horse so she came along with me on Doonie who is extra careful and honored to ride the youngster. Dad rode Dozer, Josh rode Pecos and after mom got down to work on dinner Dawn joined us on Chopo. I got my camera out to maybe snag a shot or two- but Sonia wanted to hold it so I gave it to her. I showed her which button to press and she did the rest.

photo by Sonia Thorp

photo by Sonia Thorp

photo by Sonia Thorp

Sonia is 2 1/2 years old.
I really like her taste and style. 
These three horse shadows almost feel like a rocking horse how they angle up and down

photo by Sonia Thorp

She liked Doonie's mane- got a few of her steed's locks.

photo by Sonia Thorp

And her parents...

photo by Sonia Thorp

I like this one too! 

photo by Sonia Thorp

Then her finger edged into the shots.
Here she is in the same photo as her mama.

photo by Sonia Thorp

And Doonie's mane...

photo by Sonia Thorp

And Guppy...

photo by Sonia Thorp

More long legs...

photo by Sonia Thorp

And Doonie...

photo by Sonia Thorp

More mama...

photo by Sonia Thorp

I think this one has Dawn in it too, but behind Sonia's finger...

photo by Sonia Thorp

And grandpa...

photo by Sonia Thorp

She looked at the images after taking them and sometimes tried for the same shot agin if she didn't get her subject... 

photo by Sonia Thorp

photo by Sonia Thorp

Doonie's mane...

photo by Sonia Thorp

And a close up of Doonie's mane...

photo by Sonia Thorp

The wild horse Dozer grazing beside us under dad...

photo by Sonia Thorp

And another close up of Doonie- (like right on Doonie's neck). 
I included all Sonia's shots as they were.

photo by Sonia Thorp

Sonia had enough riding and wanted to walk in the mud so we got down and handed the reins to dad.

photo by Sonia Thorp

This is one of my favorites!

photo by Sonia Thorp

And this is the last. 
It was fun to watch her search and capture images.

We walked back up the road to the house looking at the tracks.
Sonia followed a goat trail for awhile, then followed some horse tracks.
Then she found some Guppy puppy tracks and wanted to take a picture but was having a little trouble, so asked me to take it instead.

And Sonia tracks...

She learned the difference between goat, horse and dog and is working on Guppy vs Maremma tracks.
It was a fun ride and a fun walk with Sonia.