Tuesday, October 11, 2011

WILD HORSE HUNTING


Aileen went to church with Ken and Marie on Sunday.  It wasn’t far to go as their church is right next door to our RV park.  After, she and I took Mitzy and went to the Palisade Farmer’s Market.  Wow, high prices!  We drove up to Cameo next and stopped at a fruit stand and got a huge watermelon for $2.49.  We drove up to the lower entrance to the wild horse area but couldn’t get too far as one of the creek crossings was eroded too deep.  We had our Saturday’s picnic lunch in the trail parking lot then took a drive through the Colorado National Monument.  We took a detour out of the Monument to the rural area called Glade then back into the Monument again.
We went to Ken and Marie’s for SkipBo with their friends, Ernie and Atha.  We played teams and the ladies whipped us two out of three games.  We did have a good time though. 
 Ken and Marie came by a little after 10:30 Monday morning to pick us up for the trip to the upper wild horse area.  The scenery was pretty good both going and returning so lots of pictures were taken.  We had a late lunch at the top of the Book Cliffs after seeing two groups of horses, one of them quite close.  After lunch I got a series of shots of two horses mating.  Interestingly, the mare instigated the whole encounter.  We came back out to the highway a different route and I would have liked to have been by myself as there were lots of great pictures to be had but time was marching on and everyone was getting tired.  We were both really tired last night so it was earlier to bed for both of us.
The following is from the internet;
In 1971 Congress passed the Wild Free-Roaming Horse and Burro Act to protect, manage and control wild horses and burros on public lands. This legislation declares that "...wild free-roaming horses and burros are living symbols of the historic and pioneer spirit of the West; that they contribute to the diversity of life forms within the Nation and enrich the lives of the American people..."
You can find colorful hands of wild horses scattered throughout Colorado's four uniquely beautiful wild horse herd management areas. Piceance (Pe-an(t)s) Basin - East Douglas Creek, west of Meeker; Little Bookcliffs, northeast of Grand Junction; Sandwash Basin in the northwestern part of the state; and Spring Creek, southwest of Montrose.
The Bureau of Land Management maintains and manages wild horses and burros, in "herd management areas." These areas present unique opportunities for people to view wild horse herds and their habitat.
COLORADO'S ADOPT-A-WILD HORSE
OR BURRO PROGRAM 
Due to federal protection and a lack of natural predators, wild horse and burro herd sizes often expand beyond the capability of the range to support them. The BLM then rounds up the excess animals and makes them available for adoption.
The natural enemy of wild horses and burros is the mountain lion. Drought, range conditions and severe winters also control these populations naturally.
Colorado's wild horses are feral. Feral means domestic ancestors turned wild. Wild horses and burros adapt well to captivity.
Burros are in demand as guard animals to protect sheep herds from predators.

Tuesday morning Aileen put supper in the crockpot then we went grocery shopping.  While she napped after lunch, I mailed a cheque off to pay our Arizona property taxes which were up about ten percent this year at $315.84 in total.  I then spent a couple hours wandering around the Harbor Freight store.  For you Canadians, think Princess Auto on a grander scale.
We had Ken and Marie for supper last night then we all went to Palisade to Ernie and Atha’s for dessert.  Aileen took her gluten free dessert and Atha had made a nice dessert too.  We played three more games of SkipBo, all which were won by the guys.  
Happy Birthday to my sister Susan today.

Some of the wild horses

There was a great variety of natural features that kept me excited





The kissers on the left with lots of spectators

I think this must be a ghostly choir

Some Colorado fence posts

The contrast of this red hill against the plain gray was neat

The Juniper trees can be really photogenic.  This one looks pretty dead until you look at the one branch that is growing just fine, thank you




Not sure what this flower was but it was pretty interesting