Saturday, August 25, 2012

Nose-To-Butt Horseback Trail Rides Still Pack a Wallop of Excitement! Wawona Stables, Yosemite National Park – The OM Yosemite Chronicles


Horse Whisperers in Yosemite National Park




I wasn’t exactly Annie Oakley out there yesterday.

No hootin’ and hollerin’ and wrangling of sheep and steer and gun slinging cowgirl stuff on my trusty steed. In fact, if you could find an exact opposite – sort of a Prozac version of all that in our minds – then that’s perhaps what was going on instead.

Ginger was her name.

Half mule and half horse, 26 years old and big curves in all the wrong places – we’re not talking Gilligan’s Island or Jessica Rabbit type Gingers – my horse Ginger had one BIG curve.

In her fabulous, giant, barrel-like belly. And as she shuffled along nose stuffed into in the bottom of the horse in front of her, I imagine she was having a race with a sleepy snail in her own hoofed mind.

But here’s where the exciting part comes in.

For the first time ever, my girls were over 44 inches. Breaking open a new former-barrier of amusement park rides and….. and…. trail riding.

All three kids now, for the first time solo, could get on a horse and, butt-to-nose, take the two hours “ride” around the valley. For them, managing a 1,000 pound hoofed animal for 2 hours was a merit-badge of achievement. Although most of these horses were on remote-control “slow”, the erratic and exciting break from the pack to munch on a tantalizing snatch of long grass on the side of the trail was thrilling – child versus beast.

Pulling with all their might to right the giant head out of his meadow-feast and steer him back into his assembly line clomp-clomp – the kids learned gentle dominance, preventative actions and leadership.

Horse Whisperers all by the time we got back from our ride, I’m not sure how my Ginger quite made it. Hope she gets a green pasture this winter and we’ll see her in the “retired” section next summer.

Namaste & Three Cheers & Happy End of Summer -A

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