Home > Dispatches > Daily Dispatches 2019 >Daily Dispatch #213

August 3, 2019: Full Circle – Back to Basecamp

We went to bed really late because we set up camp so late. I felt like sleeping in, but Pete, up early, was the motivator. However, we did not get on the trail until 10:20 a.m, for a variety of reasons. Dinner was scant last night and we were very hungry, so he cooked up powdered eggs and pancake mix. When you are hungry, camp food always tastes good.

Neal, the Icelandic horse outfitter, was extremely personable and spent considerable time talking with us. I of course checked out his corralled horses. All but two were underweight and on a few, the rope hobbles that had been put on last night were still in place. A few had bite marks. Our Icelandics were a basis for comparison – next to their horsey hosts they appeared to be in peak condition, and perhaps even a smidgeon overweight. Their coats are glossy and Tyra has dapples.

 The horses didn't hesitate to drink out of the trail head trough.
Unlike the first day, the horses didn't hesitate to drink out of the trailhead trough.

Neal told me that his horses were coming back from a long trek, to the so-called wall – he has seven more at home—he was going to swap these ones out for the others, and put these horses on hay.

He further told me that the horses were from Extreme Farm – in 2010 there was dispersal sale, and he purchased 20-or-so of them. I noticed that all had that characteristic friendly look in their eye. My heart went out to a little black mare who was wary of the other horses. I so badly wanted to pony her back to basecamp and put her in our trailer and take her home. Does this sound like a common refrain? Indeed, it is. If I had my way this mare would be in the company of a mustang and a Clydesdale named Kong.

We had one of the best rides of the entire trip after leaving Neal’s outfitter’s camp. We went back up the switchback we went down the previous day, and on the first day of our Bob adventure. It had at least 25 switches, was uphill, was in a forested area. All the horses, who are now in good shape, were booking. What fun, to ride fast, and do the switchbacks in a balanced fashion. Once at the top, we again came to Hart Lake, which was of course still occupied.

We ate lunch at Neils’s outfitter camp, which we previously thought we’d spend the night – we had camp when riding past it on our first day. It was now hot, we sat in the shade and tied the horses to the trees. After, we hand grazed them. We talked about the fact that this would not have been a good campsite – water sources were distant and it was boggy, not ideal for camping. Most likely, bugs would move in when it cooled down and make themselves at home.

First marsh, then open fields followed. We arrived back at camp mid-afternoon. Though relieved to have arrived here safely, I wished that we might rest up, repack, and head out again. This would be preferable to what was ahead, which is the long, long, trip home.

Next: 214. 8/4/19: Being Flexible

Horse Care Home About Us Dispatches Trips Alys's Articles