Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Exciting Times

Thursday last week was an exciting day here at Dogpound South. Late in the evening Miss Ella and Alle Kitten along with their parents Clayton and Lacey arrived for a short visit. Ella started things off with a bang running through the crowds at the airport to jump into her Gramma’s arms.

She was pretty excited to be in Arizona but I think she was more excited to have been on an airplane for the first time, her little sister was more reserved, after all she had begun her flying career at a mere 3 hours of age, so this flying thing was old hat to her.

Friday we had plans to chill and then head down Tombstone way on Saturday but reality reared its head and we figured 6 hours of driving might be too much for the kids so we changed the plan and headed over to the Mesa Market on Friday for a look around. It seemed like the same folks were in the same places they were last time we were there, some selling and others buying. The clientele is pretty mature in this area so the kids were a bit of an oddity although there were a couple of other little ones, obviously also visiting their grandparents. You can tell the ghostly white skin of a northerner who hasn’t seen the sun since September. The rest of us are tanned and wrinkled like old leather. Smile


Once we toured a bit of the market we headed back down the road to Dogpound South and just enjoyed the rest of the day in the sunshine.


Mom and Dad enjoying some of that cheap American beer and Ella playing with some of Gramma’s dirt.


Although we have had cool weather for a large part of this early winter the sun came out and we enjoyed mid 70F (24-26C) weather for the entire time the kids were here.

Saturday we loaded up in our borrowed van (thanks Mike and Kathy) and headed over to our neighbours pool (thanks Mike and Kathy) for a swim. Ella is a real little water bug and spent the best part of the afternoon in the pool. I was in there for about three hours myself as everytime I would go to get out I was met with “No Grandpa” and who could resist that little person wanting to play for just a little longer.


It was another beautiful day and the weather was just great for playing in the pool, although without my usual long sleeves and hat I did manage to get a little more sun than usual for me.


Sunday we loafed around in the morning and then headed up to the TACC arena for their 5D barrel race just after lunch. Lacey had a friend who was racing her horse there so we enjoyed hanging out there and Ella managed to convince Taylor to take her for a spin on “G” while she was there.


She had a great time helping me feed our own horses and making numerous trips out into the turnout to make sure they were all well petted.


After we got done with the horse stuff it was time to head off to the pool again for another swim. (thanks Mike and Kathy)


Then home for a rest on Meg’s bed while enjoying another great warm sunny day.


Sunday night we had a BBQ and Lacey’s friend, Sue and her husband Gregg, came over and joined us for dinner and some time spent around the campfire.

Monday was sadly a going home kind of day so once everything was all packed up we headed off to Sky Harbor to drop off our precious cargo and start them on their journey home to the land just north of summer. When we got home we found this reminder on the cement of our deck and it would probably be there when we sold the place if it weren’t for the wind and rain that will surely wash it off.


Thanks for coming for a visit kids and we can hardly wait until you return down the road to Dogpound South.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Eagletail Mountains and the Canyons of Wickenberg

Over the last ten days or so Blue and I have seen a little country and travelled a few miles both on horseback and with the trailer. Last Wednesday I was out of here early in the morning to meet “K” and Teresa out west of Phoenix near Tonopah. We were going to ride out past Courthouse Rock,


and then down the canyon past Indian Springs. It was a beautiful ride across the desert and through some very picturesque valleys and along a narrow canyon. The weather couldn’t have been better, somewhere in the mid to high 70’s (25C) and the company was excellent. Unlike many of our rides there was just the three of us along on this one so we were able to ride and chat and get a good look at the many petroglyphs along the way. The canyon walls around Indian Springs must have been a favourite spot for the artists of the day to display their craft.

Below is a map of the area we rode in.

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Then Friday I headed up to Sophia’s Flats to meet a larger group of folks for a weekend of riding. There were people from Alberta, BC, Washington, Oregon, and of course our host state of Arizona there for the two days of riding. Saturday we headed out towards Pink Canyon and Box Canyon and although the sky was cloudy we only had a couple of raindrops through the day and the temperature was not to bad at all, probably somewhere in the 50’s for a high.


We managed to see some pretty country that I had heard about for years but had never managed to make it into before this weekend. The Hassayampa River runs through a couple of canyons up here and although it was only a few inches deep where we encountered it there was evidence of water being 15 or 20 feet higher at times in the past. Below is a shot at the entrance to Box Canyon a narrow slot canyon that reminded those of us from Alberta of our own Hidden Falls without the water, although our Arizona folks assured us that there could be 10 feet of water on the canyon floor at times.

Box Canyon

There was some wonderful scenery along this trail and it is always nice to run into some running water along the way out here in the desert.

Of course with this group there is always some eating going on and Ted and Julie from Oregon put on quite a Mexican spread all by themselves although the rest of us pitched in and brought enough that a small nation could have enjoyed the feast.

Sunday is usually a short ride and this one was no different although we did traverse some real nice scenery and the sun was shining brightly so that made it seem much warmer.

Blue is turning into a pretty wise trail horse and Sunday I let him for the most part pick his own way down the trail and “K” got some pictures of us making our way along and I have bunched them into the album below.

The ride today was over a high pass and into what is called Dinosaur Canyon and the map below has both days of riding on it. This years rides have the white spots along the trail and the solid trail off to the right is a ride we took last year.

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Ken Pohl and I thought we should see if we could fit in Ron and Kelly from Langley, BC’s little Smart Car and although we made it in we agreed we were probably not in the market for ones of our own anytime soon.

Cabover Rollerskate

Here is a shot of the sunset we enjoyed while we dined on Saturday night.


and I will leave you with a shot I took on the ride Saturday.

Teresa Rogers, Verna & Ken Pohl

Monday, February 4, 2013

Gourmet Riders

This weekend we went on what for us is our 2nd Annual Gourmet Lunch Ride at Camp Creek. Usually on our rides we stop for lunch and enjoy a baloney sandwich and maybe a piece of fruit and a cookie or two, along with a bottle of water. Yesterday we enjoyed Fried Chicken, Baked Beans, Shrimp, Chicken Salad, Quiche, a veggie and fruit platter, along with Chocolate Chip cookies, Chocolate Dipped Strawberries, and Chocolate Caramel Brownies, complete with wine. Even had a Caesar Salad prepared right there on the spot. Forgive me if I forgot something but rest assured I ate some of everything, and according to Blue to much of everything. To many more meals like this and I will be trading up to one of Matt’s Percheron’s.


We packed it all in to the Juniper Tree lunch spot in our saddle bags. Nobody hungry on this ride. We saw some pretty country and even got to try out our slickers for a minute or two. That seems to be a regular thing on this ride too, as the only time I used it last year was on this same trail. We dropped down into Camp Creek and meandered up the creek to the falls. They aren’t huge but from what we have seen on our, granted, limited travels in Arizona, these might well be Arizona’s Niagara Falls.



Brenda’s new horse, Wink, is working out well and taking to the trails like a champ.


And we are infiltrating our riding group with more and more Canadians all the time. Here is Verna Pohl from up Ponoka way in Alberta on her big fellow Ben. Ken and Verna have just purchased a place down the road and across the wash from us down here at Dogpound South.


The map below shows our route, and our lunch was in the same place as last year, under the big Juniper Tree although someone felt the need to remove the sign and all the neat things that were there when we visited last year.

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Monday we had visitors from back in Canada, well, really they are over in Gold Canyon and just hopped on their horse (iron) and headed over towards Dogpound South. Rene’ and Jeanette write a blog, RV Voyageur, that we follow and we have read and commented on each others blogs for a few years now. They hale from Langley, B.C. and travel with a fifth wheel and their motorcycle loaded on a swivel wheel trailer behind.


Although Brenda and I think we are witty and charming, her more than me, we have a secret weapon at our disposal when it comes to getting folks to head down the road to Dogpound. Brenda broke open the whole arsenal today and we lunched on Grilled Tenderloins, Garlic Bread, a great salad, and the super secret cheezy potatoes. She followed that up with a Fresh baked Apple Pie and ice cream. Needless to say supper is not in the cards today.

Like most folks whose blogs we follow we already know a lot about each other so we are able to get right to the serious chin wagging without a lot of the introductory stuff that meeting new folks usually entails. We spent a few hours enjoying the sun and conversation on the deck.


And then we decided it was time to switch up the game a little and trade rides for a while. Rene’ and Jeanette are good sports and went along with our idea.


Now the horse I usually ride is a little heavier than this critter, but he can stand up on his own so if I look a little tense it was because I didn’t want to scratch up all that nice shiny chrome by letting this fellow roll over on our rough old granite. Rest easy Mom, Rene’ kept the keys in his pocket, and I have gotten my motorcycling urge out of the way for another few years.

1-Iron Horse

Had to steal this photo from Rene’s blog, somehow we didn’t get any of us on the bike on our camera.

Well all good things must come to an end so we said our “see ya laters” and they headed out to do battle with the Phoenix rush hour traffic and we captured the image below so we can put this journal entry to bed in the tradition of another blogger, the Birdlady of Blogland, who I might add is amazing all the folks on the East Coast with her rapid recovery from hip surgery.


The End