Wednesday, July 30, 2008

It's Fair Time Everyone

Unless you live in a cave or have a very busy life, you will know that the Clark County Fair starts Friday, August 1st and goes through Sunday, August 10th.

I know that some of you have been working towards this event for a very long time and will be spending many hours/days out at the fair in ‘our little hole’. Well, when you’re out there, come over and say hi. Unless you are involved in 4-H and then we will probably come up to you and say hi.

My DH and I are members of Clark County Fair Mounted Patrol commonly called Fence Riders. This is a wonderful group of giving (crazy) people that spend time sitting in the parking lots of the fair grounds greeting folks (kids love the horses), finding lost cars (they just seem to sneak off) and just keeping the peace. After all we are the ones in the ‘white hats’.

We are all volunteers and we fill up 30 stalls in our little Red Barn in the north east corner of the horse area. Many of us move in with trailers, campers or tents to spend the 10 days as an adult summer camp. We have to care for our own horses and be ready and cleaned up for fair visitors by 9:00 so the days are early.

Our ‘job’ begins about 4:00 pm when we tack up and get into our uniforms in preparation for our 5 o’clock meeting. There we get our lot assignments and information about the show that night. At about 5:30 we line up Calvary style and ride out up the road and into our assigned parking lots. We all stay in this big parade formation through the lots as each team peels off into their lot and the rest ride on. We spend the early evening walking through our assigned lots watching for folks trying to sneak over the fences, pointing the way to the entry gates and just greeting the visitors. Sometimes we find cars with doors that have been left open (honest) that we close and occasionally we find cars blocking fire lanes that we have moved. Later in the evening we spend most of our time helping people find their cars and pointing them to the exits. We find lost kids and lost parents and one time we were able to assist the Sherriff’s department in finding a lost Alzheimer’s patient. About 9:30 the call goes out that ‘it’s time’ and the team in the farthest lot starts in, picking up teams in each lot as they pass through until we are all together in our Calvary lines coming back down the hill. We put our horses up, feed and water them and then a lot of us head off to the food court for dinner. One of the vendors stays open for us (most are closed by the time we get down there) and we all sit together, eat and tell stories about what we saw on our tour. A sea of white hats and red coats.

On several nights during the fair we try to keep the 4-H parents smiling while we help them line up and park during the 4-H horse clubs move in and move out. We help with traffic control for the draft horse shows and on the last Saturday we assist the Special Olympics Handicap Rodeo.

We work at the Skamania County Fair as parking attendants (on foot) and at Christmas we put on a Christmas Roundup for disadvantaged children. Some of our members ride in the area parades and we usually have a group in the Rose Parade. This year our team won first place in their division! Also at the Rose Parade a group of us volunteer as coliseum escorts. We walk with each equestrian unit as they go through the 'spooky' coliseum at the start of the parade. We see the parade ‘up close and personal’. Fence Riders also operate as Clark County Mounted Search and Rescue.

We are an active group and we have fun. Our meetings are the second Monday of each month at Pied Piper Pizza. If this sounds like fun, come and check us out.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Egyptian Arab looking for a home

I just received this email from Pat Brown -
This lady is trying to find a good home for this beautiful Egyptian Arab. Please contact her at if you are interested.

He is Purebred Egyptian Arab.
13 y.o. 15+ hands, UTD, trimmed every 6 weeks,very good shape.
BEAUTIFUL head, very Arched tail.
Ground manners Almost perfect! A child could play with him. Fun, playful, follows you around.
90 days of training, but trainer did not like the "Arab hot" so did not work with his quirks - herd bound. He was not made to mind when on his own. He buffaloed the trainer and got away with it.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Forever Homes

These horses are still looking for forever homes.
For more information call Pat at 666-7978 or Lori at 798-3515.

Cindy is a lovely horse with a quiet attitude. She has been heavily "cowboyed" in the past and we want her to be adopted by preferably a female and any training must be gentle training. She's been ridden for 3 months, and is currently being worked with once a week by a high school equestrian senior for a senior project. She's petite, about 14 1/2 hands, and a very sweet and good horse that needs reassurance and a calm human, we are asking $200 adoption fee. Dun markings.

Indy is a 2-year-old paint born on the 4th of July. She's halter broke, loads/unloads, been saddled. Very social. Call Peggy at 254-8836

Dot is a 6-year-old qh, very willing, needs experienced someone to take the time to work with her. Halters and leads easily. Should not be a "lone" horse. Suggested adoption fee $150

Cinnamon is a sr. appy, excellent ground manners, recovering from soft tissue injury in front, would make good pasture mate or perhaps very lite riding?. Contact Pat for more details.

***All of these horses have had a rough time previous to coming to foster homes and have made a comeback thanks to the excellent care given to them by those foster homes. They deserve to have that quality of care for the rest of their lives in their permanent.

Pedometer for a horse?

I just read something interesting from the Rick Lamb e-newsletter. It was an excerpt from his book “Horse Smarts for the Busy Rider”

It talked about a rancher with limited acreage (don’t we all) that divides it up into several small paddocks. The horses are put on a new one each day to give the grass a chance to rest and grow a bit. To get the horses to walk more, which is what they would do in the wild, he has lanes set up into each paddock from a central watering source. The lanes are considered ‘sacrifice areas’ because the heavy hoof traffic keeps the grass from growing. During the day, the horses will walk back and forth from grass to water several times, building up their walking distance.

We have something similar set up at our place. I am a worry wart about my horses and wonder if they are getting enough exercise when we aren’t riding regularly. After reading this, I feel much better because I see them come and go from their barn to the pasture several times a day. Maybe I could strap a pedometer (what would it be called on a horse) to see how far they are really walking. I might be surprised.

We have only had horses here at home for 4 years so we didn’t have a lot of experience to turn to when planning the horse area. Instead, we turned to Erin Harwood of the WSU Extension office Small Acreage Program. She is the coordinator and if you aren’t on her email blast list, contact her today to be added. She has classes and tours to teach newbies and oldbies alike about good ideas for their small farms. And if you have a question about most anything ‘ag’ she has or will come up with an answer. She has given us plans for bat boxes, feeding cribs and directed us to noxious weed charts. Click here to connect to this wonderful resource.

Stay tuned...........
Blessings to you all,

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Interesting News

I just received this information in a news release from Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife. We are on their mailing list. You can read the whole release here. This is the link to subscribe to the mailing list.

Wolf pair confirmed in Okanogan County
OLYMPIA-Two adult animals located and radio-collared last Friday (July 18) in western Okanogan County are wild, gray wolves, genetic tests have confirmed.
One of those animals, an adult male, was later photographed by remote camera in a location where six pups also were photographed.
The finding marks the first documented, resident wolf pack in Washington since the 1930s.

33 Truths about Horses

1. People who don't take care of their own horses will be the first ones to tell you how to care for yours.
2. You should never buy a cheap girth!
3. A handsome horse that’s badly behaved will become a lot less attractive in about 15 min.
4. People, who think they have nothing more to learn about riding, hit the ground the hardest.
5. Children and ponies are natural allies and often have identical dispositions.
6. The richest horse people often look the poorest.
7. The closeness of a horse is one of the sweetest smells in the world.
8. A solitary ride through the woods is more beneficial then six months with the best psychiatrist.
9. The worse a person rides the more likely they are going to blame it on the horse.
10. The best thing about going to the barn first thing in the morning is that horses don't care how you look.
11. If a dealer insists a horse is worth twice what he's asking he's usually worth half that much.
12. The best way to appreciate how another person rides is to get on their horse.
13. I can recognize another horse person no matter what town, city, state, county or country I visit.
14. You can never have too many hoof picks.
15. It is not wise to argue with something that outweighs you by 1,000 pounds
16. I'd rather have a horse with a perfect mind then a perfect head.
17. Eight hours is not too long to be in the saddle!
18. If you think you have left the water on in the barn you have, if you think you have closed the pasture gate you haven't.
19. When someone asks you if you like their horse always say yes
20. The happiest people I know own horses, dogs, cats and at least one deranged goat.
21. If you're looking for the perfect horse you will never own one.
22. Owning a horse can either make a marriage or break it.
23. I'd rather lose my Chap Stick than my curb chain.
24. You shouldn't talk about your first place ribbon to someone that came second.
25. If someone says that horse has a little buck, it has a BIG buck.
26. If we need rain, schedule a show. VERY TRUE!!!!!!!!!!!
27. I've never warmed up to someone that didn't want to walk down to the stables.
28. A clean stable and a sparkling horse are among life's great pleasures.
29 Even given away horses can be too expensive. Especially give away horses.
30. No matter how badly behaved you are, your horse always gives you a second chance.
31. A more expensive horse doesn't make a better one.
32. I can't stand to have an empty stable.
33. Losing a horse can break your heart, but it will have been worth it.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Dressage at DevonWood

This fantastic event, one of the best and largest dressage competitions in the Northwest, will be this weekend, July 25-27. It will be three daylight to dusk days of competition, terrific shopping in their famous Vendor Village, delectable fare, and wonderful scenery.

DevonWood Equestrian Centre is an internationally recognized, privately owned, dressage boarding, training and show facility located in Sherwood, Oregon. Check out their web site for more information.

Debbie McDonald was at this event last year. She is now on her way to the Olympics.

This year, Jessica Wisdom will be competing 6 horses and Clark County's own Rebecca Larimer will be competing on Bill Svendsen's Cavaliere and two other horses.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

West Nile in Washington

From the Washington Department of Health
West Nile Virus > News Release Page:

Thursday, Jul. 17, 2008
Virus found in Benton County area mosquitoes

By Laura Kate Zaichkin, Tri-City Herald staff writer

West Nile virus has been detected in mosquitoes at the Benton and Yakima county borders, officials reported today.
This positive West Nile virus sample taken from Byron Pond — located between Prosser and Mabton — is the first in the state this year.

Horse tails update

I don't want to overload you with new stuff today but I have received a lot of feedback on this issue.

First, let me tell you these were not my horses - yet. They belonged to a friend that lives out in the View area.

I received an email saying - it is epidemic and has been occurring for at least the last six months. It is widespread and the main culprits of this act are the METH HEADS. They get good money for the horse hair. Word on the street is that the hair is being sold for horse hair extensions mainly. Pretty Sad what drugs will make people do.

And another email with this information - this happened last year also, especially black tails.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Warning - cutting tails

I just received an email from a friend that lives in the View area and I wanted to pass on the information -

Thought I would put the word out that there are people in the area that are cutting the hair off horse tails. They came through our place Friday night and cut 4 horses. From the nub down the hair is gone. This is the worst time of year for them to be with out there tails. Their natural fly swaters are gone for many months. I don't know if anyone else has had this happen but I wanted to make people aware

If anyone has more information, let us know.

Stuff and a good tip

I'm new at this and I hope you'll bear with me as I learn how to do this blog thing.

Some of you have received emails from me about events or issues relating to the Clark County horse community. I keep adding addresses when I find someone new but the list is getting really big. Through this blog, we can get the information out to a lot more people.

We have had some land use issues that need to be looked at, some events that more people need to know about and some really neat stuff that just needs to be told. Maybe even some good hints that newbies like me don't know yet. This is all the type of thing that I would like to cover here.

What I want from all of you is information about issues, events, attaboys and hints. This will be a great place to share all that.

Now to start that sharing ----
We have only had our horses at our place for 4 years and it takes a lot longer than that to learn all the 'easy' ways of doing things. But we have learned one trick that I just have to share.

You know those awful '300 lb' stall mats that need to be rearranged occasionally? Those ones that defy any attempt at moving? A friend was watching us trying to move some around and suggested we use vice grips. Now that was a great idea. If you haven't tried it yet, just attach two of them and they will work just like handles. I don't know how two metal clamps can make a mat seem lighter but they sure do.

Stay tuned .......

And Blessings to you all,

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Trail Trial Results & Pics

Hi everyone. As promised, here are the results from Saturday's Trail Trials. Pics are posted below as well.

Youth Extreme
1st Amanda Gaudel 106.5 $20gc
2nd Kyle Kellmer 93 $15gc

1st Jayme Montanic 109 $15gc
2nd Brittaney Howland 105 $10gc
3rd Anna Dolliver 84 $5gc

1st Charles Cowan 119 $245
2nd Jill Eakin 118 $200
Jodi Pierce 116
Debbie Woodhouse 116
Suzanne Beuchler 111
Jenna Kellmer 110
Jan Bennett 110
Anita Will 110
Jackie Stewart 109
Marilyn Bennell 108
Joyce Montgomery 104
Leeann Vanderpool 100
Shasta Bennett 91
Jon Bole 90

1st Anna Baldwin 112 $250
2nd Bill Bott 110 $175
3rd Kathy Lake 109 $75B
abs Waldal 109
Tracy Haslem 108
Christina Underwood 108
Laura Ross 107
Murray Campbell 107
Amber Waldal 107
Jessica Barnett 107
Jackie Carter 106
Candie Mackey 106
Adruana Frey Ortega 104
Bonnie Houghton 103
Samantha Westby 103
Kathy Cavanah 102.5
Janeen Parries 102
Jodie Sharp 102
Laura Flanagan 102
Mary Jo Haslem 102
Beth Woodson 101
Alisa Trant 101
Terry Taylor 101
Stacy Thelin 101
Charlie Lake 100
Claudia ? 99
Murray Campbell 99
Nancy Koski 97
Joyce Montgomery 96
Susan Plummer 96
Jean Waller 94.5
Danette Howland 94
Ann Robitalle 92
Regalee Gaudef 92
Rachel Knowlton 91
DeeDee Butler 90
Stacy Eilts 88
Janella Radetial 85
Teresa Nootenboom 83
Camie Campbell 59

Things to note: Ties were broken using #7 the Curtain, then #5 the Woodpile, followed by #8 the Trash if needed.

If you decided that you liked the event but don't want to ride next year, let me know if you would like to help or even judge.

I hope you all had a great time this year, I know we did and look forward to probably doing it again next year.

You’ll notice Extreme only placed 1st and 2nd, that was advertised that way on the entry form, and done to give a bigger prize to the winners.