Thursday, July 30, 2009

Walk in Somis on Tuesday and Santa Clarita on Wednesday

Before Agility class on Tuesday I took a short walk in my friend's orchard. I would love to walk here everyday, but then I would be overstaying my welcome. The walk was short since I didn't get there as early as I would have liked and I had to be sure to get to class on time.

Fancy near the lemons. There are also avocados, strawberries, blueberries, and some other stuff.

Come! After coming, they race off again.

Pie investigates a plank. I fell in this ditch once and landed on my back. I was standing near the edge and I went to take step sideways and BOTH knees went out and I pitched in. Weird. How I manged to not hit my head on the way in or when I landed I don't know. And why I ended up on my back I can't figure out either. I seem to be somewhat accident prone. Maybe I should wear a safety helmet...

Sometimes this ditch has even more water in it. As it was, Pie and Fancy still had fun racing around and getting muddy.

It was deep enough for Fancy to swim, but not Pie, although she gave it a good try.

Racing off again and coming back when called. Such good dogs.

Blossom poses on some tires to prove he was there.

Fancy got muddy, but she has definitely been muddier.

The dogs show off their obedience skills while I start to get ready for agility class.

On Wednesday I drove to Santa Clarita and had dinner with the family- a yummy home cooked meal prepared by my mom. Thanks Mom! I don't get tasty home cooked meals at my house. I need to go home for dinner more often.
After dinner Mom, her dogs, and my two big dogs (Blossom stayed home) went for a walk in the Angeles National Forrest (dogs legally allowed off leash) on "The Road" (the washed out, abandoned section of San Fransquito Canyon Road.) The sun was quickly setting so we kept up a brisk pace and took no pictures. Try not to be too disappointed. The dogs had lots of good sniffs, and Pie used her Water Divining Powers to find the only puddle of water deep enough to submerse herself in. Doesn't she realize this is a desert and there shouldn't be any surface water that deep at the end of July? No matter, she still found some.
Besides the water, Pie also found a tarantula! It was huge! I saw her off in the distance sniffing something. She must have learned from the smaller spiders she has taken into her mouth and spit back out that it was not edible, and I called her off and no one was harmed. It's body was bigger than her paw. With legs it was about the size of my hand. This is actually the second tarantula I have seen in this area, the third "wild" tarantula I've seen total. My mom had to put her dogs on the leash to walk past it. She thought it might attack them. Or maybe she wanted to security of the dogs so it didn't attack her!
We got back to the car just as it was getting dark enough to need a flashlight, which we intelligently brought with us. But that sentence was confusing. We did not need the flashlight because we got back to the car in time. Had we been a few minutes later we might have needed it. I just wanted to be clear on that so I wasn't accused of making things up.
This weekend I have drill to occupy my time. Since I really have nothing better to do, I suppose I'll go. I know sarcasm doesn't come through well in a written sentence, so I'll give you a hint- that was a sarcastic remark. I have a dinner with two friends to look forward to on Saturday, nothing exciting planned after drill on Sunday.
The long awaited Big Bear post is almost done. I've loaded all my pictures and now I just have to do the writing. Everyone will have to wait a few more days to be satisfied!
**it is annoying when the paragraph breaks do not show up!

Big Bear 2009- The Details

Our Big Bear trip was now a few weeks ago, so let's see if I can remember all the fun we had.

I drove up separately, after my agility trial was over on Sunday. I finally figured out that if I post my pictures in a different way, now you should be able to click on them to make them larger.

This is the house we stayed in. When I arrived we went out to dinner at a empty (except for us) IHOP. After dinner it was getting too dark to go to the lake, so we went for a walk through the neighborhood, then came home and read our books and watched a movie.

I brought a dog bed for my pups.

Blossom staked out a spot under this desk.

On Monday, the first thing we did was go to the lake.

I bought some pink tennis balls at a sporting store. Some of the proceeds go to Breast Cancer Research. Plus, they match my girl dogs. Here Fancy is swimming with her pink ball.

Pie is drinking and swimming.

Pie is the most powerful swimmer, and has to be held back for the other dogs to have a turn. Her shoulders are out of the water she is paddling so hard.

And Pie got it. Fancy is mad and Molly is silly.

Click on this picture ans see if you can find Fancy. I would throw the ball as far as possible with the chuck-it, and hope that no passing boats ran them down.
After the lake, we drove to the shopping area and walked around (with the dogs.) I bought a Blossom carrier. Then we drove the dogs home, had lunch, drove back to the shopping area, saw a movie (Public Enemies) had dinner, came back home, took another walk, then watched another movie. Phew!
On Tuesday, we reattempted our walk to the fire tower from last year. Last year we were under prepared and also took a wrong turn and never got to our destination, although we did see it in the distance. I knew Blossom wouldn't make it under his own power, but I didn't want to leave him alone in the house in case he didn't like being alone and voiced his displeasure and disturbed the neigbhors. Here he is in his pack. I carried him almost the whole 10 miles.

I like Molly sneaking into this shot.

You can see the fire tower on the far left. We were almost there but I thought the dogs needed water now, rather than later. Pie did carry the water on this trip, but there was also some water to be found along the way.

We made it!

A nice scenic view. I did not have pictures of my own because I knew I would have my hands full with Blossom, so I had to borrow pictures from my Dad's camera.
It turns out the National Forrest in this area is still closed as a result of a fire three years ago. Apparently there is a danger of falling trees.
On the walk back were were not that far away from our starting point when I began to feel slightly ill. I'm always worried it is dehydration, and even though I drank lots of water, the Blossom back pack did make my back drenched. When people in the Air Force get dehydrated they always give them IV fluids and I was hoping it wasn't that bad. We stopped, had some water, and I also had a little bit of food. After putting water on my head under my dad's direction, I did feel better. After that Blossom walked the rest of the way. I think maybe it was a combination of the altitude (it was 8000 ft and I live at sea level) a tiny bit of dehydration, hunger, and fatigue at carrying Blossom. My non-elderly parents didn't have any trouble though, so that is always embarrassing.

On Wednesday, Dad went off-roading with a friend and mom and I went horse back riding. Here is Mom on her horse Branagin. He is a draft cross.
I spotted a flea-bitten grey in the corral and hoped I would get that one because it was the same color as Boo. Sure enough, they gave him to me. His name was Teddy Bear. We had a nice 1 hr ride through the foot hills of Big Bear.
This same day we also visited the very informative Big Bear Museum.
In the evening we went out to dinner with Dad's friend and I did some more reading in my book. Luckily it was 1014 pages. I finished it on our last night there. It is "World Without End." I enjoyed it.
The next day, Thursday for those keeping track, I can't remember what we did. I think we took a longish walk though a different section of the neighborhood, stopping at the lake first. Then we dropped the dogs off at home, went back to the shopping and bought some items, and saw a different movie. I saw Harry Potter and the parents saw The Proposal. More reading of my book followed in the evening.
On Friday, our plan was to see the Champion Lodgepole Pine, the largest example of it's species. Here is mom proving she does go off roading. Pie shoved her way into the picture.

First we stopped on the Castle Rock trail. The dogs ran off.

Some more slowly than others.

Dad and Roscoe take to the trail.

A view of the lake from the trail.
At one point we thought we had come to Castle Rock so we stopped to climb them. Fancy and Pie are accomplished rock climbers, but not Blossom so I tied him to a branch. Here he is anxiously awaiting my arrival and being cute.

Dad poses.

However, we soon came to realize what we climbed on was not Castle Rock. This one was. There were lots of people on the trail (sadly) so I had to put Fancy and Pie on leash since they range too far away.

Blossom was getting tired and we still had to see the Lodgepole Pine, so we turned around and headed back to the Jeep. While going downhill, Blossom says out it front. Going uphill, he lags behind.

Back at the trail head we paused for a picture.

There were some threatening clouds and we heard thunder, but we pressed onto the Lodgepole Pine.

Besides the Pine, there were other stations. We picked up a brochure and it told us what each one was. I forget what this one was, but one was corn lilies, another was mistletoe, a different one was the effects of fire, and so on.

Here is the Champion Lodgepole Pine. It was big, but I couldn't get a good picture of it.

Mom reads about the CLPP.

A beautiful mountain meadow next to the pine.
On the way back to the jeep, we spotted a trail sign that said it was one mile to the Rifle Sight, so off we went.

A good picture spot.

There was a lot of water along this trail. It was luck for us there were these nice little bridges. Pie disdained to use the bridges.

Molly kept her eye on Mom and Dad.

Fancy shows off her climbing skills. I say "Fancy up!" and up she goes.
We never did find the Rifle Sight. Dad went on around another bend, hoping to find it, while Mom hid behind a rock and fixed her shoe.

I was disappointed to not find the Rife Sight, but the walk was so nice I'm glad we went. Old Man Blossom walked the whole thing. Maybe 1.5-2 miles at Castle Rock and 2 at the LPP and RS.

Fancy in the Jeep on the way back home.
The parent's went to Craig's camp and picked him up and he joined us for the last night.
Saturday was our sad day of departure. I took the opportunity to take a picture of the dogs in the trailer. They did not actually travel this way, although I'm sure Pie would have liked to.


On the way down the hill, I pulled over to get a shot of the fire tower from a different perspective. Check out the zoom on my camera. This is how far away I was. The fire tower is on the pointy peak in the middle. Click for larger.

Zooming in a bit more it looks like a boulder.

Ah ha! There it is! I love my camera.

Well, that is the end of my exciting Big Bear trip. The dogs and I had a great time, and it is especially nice to share the time with my family.
Going back into civilization I was stuck in traffic which had no buisness being so bad on a Saterday afternoon.

At least I have something to show for it. Since we were moving so slowly, I was able to get a picute of this very rare and very expensive car.
I see a lot of expensive cars around here. Lotus are common (infact I also saw one of those on this same drive, but they aren't picture worthy,) and so are Ferrari, Lamergini less so, a few Masserati, and so on.) I know these names are spelled wrong, but I'm not going to look up the correct spelling. So there.

Sigh- the end.