Today was a short ride.
2.7 miles in an hour.
It started out with extreme FOG, so bad on Hwy 154 that climbing up and out of Santa Barbara it was pea soup and a hazardous route. But it is just the typical May Gray, soon to be followed by the June Gloom, and is something the locals take in stride.
Especially when we know that all we have to do is crest over the hill and we will be in bright summer weather.
The wild bucking horses!
Right there, just across the riverbed, are a group of the wild mares that live on the property. The story goes that several times a year they are herded up, and taken off to buck in rodeos, then they come back and live on these beautiful 9,000 acres.
They are not the problem.
The herd has a stallion, and he is a problem.
So two ladies came by on their horses and said howdy and asked about the wild horses, and I gave them the advice not to get too close, lest they incur the wrath of the jealous stallion. A few minutes later they came back saying there didn't seem to be any way around the mares, and so they joined us for a stroll around the Live Oak Campground.
So we climbed back up into the camp area, and went for a stroll, poking around to see what is there.
If you drive by on Hwy 154 now it is simply shocking, 15% of capacity, and fast returning to the valley floor it was before the dam was built in the 1950's that transformed it into a popular lake.
We ambled along, angling back toward where the rigs were parked.
Then we came to a locked gate, and a conundrum. How to proceed? One of the gals noticed that a downed tree seemed to have pushed over a fence, so I asked Tobe to find a way through. We pushed aside the undergrowth, went down a slope, and blazed a trail for the horses to follow.
And yet another Rocky was along in the group, so Tobe represented the design improvement hybrid of this most excellent breed.
Resistol RideSafe equine helmet that looks like a cowboy hat. You just never know who you are going to encounter on the trail!
Another lovely day on the back of a gaited mule.
What's better than that?