From there to there

14 08 2010

Not 15 minutes inside the basin for the first time in three weeks, I had to leave again because of a wall of rain coming straight at us from the western hills. I just had time to spot Hollywood’s … then Comanche, Kestrel and Winona …

The road in isn’t as bad as I expected – though there’s evidence one poor person got stuck: s/he left staves in the road from where s/he dug him/herself out of the mud. But it is cut in numerous places where hard-rushing water flowed in mean little rivulets from high to low. When the road is dry, you may not need four-wheel drive, but you definitely want high clearance – and good shocks.

Crossing a couple of the interior arroyos, you have to dodge rocks (I moved one for you, but you’ll still have to squeak between the wall of the arroyo and the new “drain hole”) and climb or descend a couple of new sandy ledges formed by the fast-moving water. At one of the Spring Creek crossings, there’s evidence the water reached 12 yards above the base of the arroyo!! WOW. I don’t think your Porsche or your mini van is going to cut it for a travel vehicle there. (Even the Jeep scraped bottom on one of those new sandy shelves – still “pristine,” not yet worn down.)

After waiting out a second wave of rain (!), I went cautiously back into the basin.

From a long way away, I saw horses running – Comanche’s had joined Hollywood’s – ‘Nona was leading the whole group, playing ahead of mama Kestrel.

Kestrel and Winona in the lead, followed by Comanche in foreground, center. Piedra and Tenaz almost behind the greasewood behind Kestrel, Hollywood and Sage, Baylee and Iya.

I gained a higher vantage, but I couldn’t tell that they were running *from* anything, and they were running basically toward me (in the Jeep), so I wasn’t the cause of their – dare I say it – joyful celebration?!

Coming up out of Spring Creek

They paused once to look at me … (you can see by their blowing forelocks that it was pretty windy)

… then continued on their way, following Comanche following Kestrel. (Check out Baylee; her ears are forward in every photo!)

They were close to me now, so I stopped and waited for a while – I thought I had an idea where they were going, but I was wrong. When I thought I’d given them enough time, I eased up the road, looked all around … and finally spotted them way out “yonder” … and that’s how I found out Cinch had Liberty. They settled in a big “valley” full of – you guessed it – more green, and that’s where they stayed the rest of the day. Twister and Cuatro were even farther beyond them, but they were nearly hidden, and I didn’t know at that point who they were. I thought I’d seen other horses that I thought may have been Hook’s band, but as it turned out, Hook’s were one of the few horses I didn’t see (along with David’s little family and Bruiser).



3 responses

14 08 2010
Barbara Warner

Dear God, please let them stay free.

14 08 2010
Rochlia [Tracy]

Running like the wind, eh? :] I know I’ve said this a million times but… they’re beautiful!

14 08 2010
Lynn Bauer

Thanks, TJ for taking the chances that you do to find these guys and share their lives with us – great photos, as always, but, more importantly, GREAT STORIES about these families and how they must live their lives in SC! We’re still hoping for a late Sept. visit, but, we’ll have to wait and see how things go here at home before we’ll “know.”
L & K
M & K

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