Evening sip

28 07 2013

Hollywood, Shane, Mona and Aurora drinking in the Spring Creek arroyo.

It doesn’t look like much, but they’re drinking in the bottom of the Spring Creek arroyo in Spring Creek Basin. With more moisture comes more irritation in the form of biting flies.

Herdin’ girls

23 01 2013

Mona and Aurora were hanging out with Bounce. Bounce is following Hollywood’s and Comanche’s bands. Bounce is Aurora’s daddy, but she’s in Hollywood’s band now. Mona is definitely Hollywood’s mare. They wandered as they grazed, and pretty soon, Mona and Aurora and Bounce were on one side of a shallow arroyo, and everybody else was on the other side. Hollywood looked and grazed, then looked and made a decision, and he trotted down the hill and across the arroyo, bluffed Bounce away and brought his girls back to the fold.


Even in his snaking attitude, he’s so cute. Look at his nostril all puckered up. I wish I hadn’t chopped Aurora’s ears off, but I was focused on Holls when she trotted up the hill between us.

And that Aurora looks just like daddy … and mama Alegre. She’s really a beautiful blending of both.

-8 and be there

20 12 2012

Not quite as iconic as Galen Rowell’s oft-quoted “f8 and be there” – nor, I suspect, will it become as universal. But at minus 8 degrees this morning, I was there, in the basin, in paradise turned white.

Seven; hill to the back right is the eastern side of Flat Top.

Seven in winter’s wonderland.

Kootenai and Mysterium

Kootenai and Mysterium

Hayden and Tenaz

Hayden and Tenaz

Hollywood's band

Hollywood’s band walking away from the noise of a truck. What kind of crazy person would be out here on a minus-8-degree morning?

Oh, right. 🙂


Aurora with her band. For extra credit, name the horse in the background attached to those gorgeous stripes! (Aurora’s daddy, Bounce, whom she resembles so strikingly, is following the bands.)

The temperature didn’t get above about 22 degrees today. Snow-lasting temps. I love it.

Mustangs at the edge of the world

18 12 2012

Seen any “Pirates” lately? Seems a good reference for this shot:


Or was it “end” of the world? Ah well. That’s a mix of Comanche’s and Hollywood’s bands on the “edge” of the second saddle of what I call Lizard Mesa. Young bachelors Hayden, Tenaz and Apollo “ran into them” at the double ponds and sent them running north. I thought maybe they’d end up at Sorrel Flats for a drink, but only the boys were there when I arrived. West of the east pocket, I finally spotted the bands on the yonder ridge, all in a line, silhouetted by the sun just before it dropped into a snow-cloud bank, which has been stalled at the west/southwest ridgeline (the top of the very far tree-covered hill you can see in the background of the above pic) for the last two or more days.

Notice, if you will, the complete and utter lack of snow on the ground.

Gentle admonition to folks within 200 miles who got a foot-plus of the white stuff: Don’t be greedy!

How does EVERYBODY get snow but Disappointment Valley!? Not a speck; not a drop. It’s not even damp.

Weatherman says another wave is coming … Cross yer fingers ‘n toes. We sure need the moisture.

Another dark girl

24 10 2012

This happened a little while ago:

Aurora has hooked up with Hollywood and his band.

She’s the daughter of Alegre and Bounce, and most recently was with her mother, little sister, big sister and niece in Traveler’s band. Little girl growing up.

Meet ‘n greet

7 07 2012

Grey/Traveler greeting stepdaughter Aurora.

The band was grazing near Wildcat Spring tonight (this photo is from July 4). The trickle is doing really well, with water filling the little pool, then trickling on down, enabling the horses to drink at multiple places. Not a lot, but more than previously. And with this rain now … ! Hopefully this is the start of our monsoon weather pattern!

Longest day, first light

25 06 2012

Two wild babies, enveloped in phenomenal light:







More Cassidy Rain

10 06 2012

At last, more pix of the beautiful girl. These are all from her birthday, June 2.

Cassidy Rain with mama Gaia and auntie Aurora.

I like Gaia’s seemingly “challenging” look here, but in truth, she was lowering her head to graze.

Like most first-time mamas, Gaia couldn’t keep from touching her newborn. Sniffing her, licking her, nuzzling her, bonding mama to babe and babe to mama.

A precious thing is the love of a mama for her baby.

Cassidy Rain with her elegant grandmama Alegre (Aurora’s and Gaia’s mama).

These may be my absolute favorites:

Mama checking on her dreaming baby.

Sweet mercy. If you don’t see in this image that babies are the most precious thing to these wild families, I just don’t know how else to convey it. (Creative note: Photos cropped for maximum impact.)

So much beauty and promise in these little bodies. 🙂

What matters, size?

5 06 2012

Corona (Corona (Sand Wash Basin) x Raven) is 3 years old. Aurora (Bounce x Alegre) is 1.

Yes, Corona does seem thin. She’s had those jutting hip bones for quite a while. She seems healthy enough, just not an “easy keeper.” But I really took this photo to illustrate the size difference – or rather the size similarity and the AGE difference. You can’t see a lot of Aurora behind Corona, but she’s easily as big as Corona, who is two years older. Alegre is a good-sized mare and passes long legs on to her foals. Whisper, her second foal (adopted last year), was a tall boy. Bounce, in contrast, is quite a little guy, probably no taller than 14 hands. Raven is a good-sized mare, and it seems that Corona, Corona’s sire, is a good-sized stallion.

They’re close as sisters or BFFs. You rarely see one far from the other.

Just a thing to make ya go hmm. (Aren’t they cute? :))

Family ties

14 04 2012

Baby Mariah with her new family.

Even almost-yearling Aurora takes a role in protecting baby.

Mamas and their daughters. Notice Gaia shedding.

When the babies are little, mamas are constantly checking them, sniffing them, reassuring them – and themselves – that all is well. Each one so precious and unique.