We rode through the Wagon Wheel Gap along the Rio Grande River- straight into a slice of history. The tiny town of all red buildings was the remainder of a popular hot springs area many moons ago. It was a historical resort as well as an old train stop. The old railroad was clearly visible as it winded along the river down below the road. We envisioned riding along the train tracks to avoid a few sketchy guard rail sections, but we found it was fenced off in many areas. Thus we were yet again grateful for Grayson’s patience in following behind us.
The aspen were lovely along the river, as were the many other colorful varieties of vegetation. There was one spot in particular that got our attention. On one slope of a mountain opposite us along the river, there was a perfectly straight line of golden aspen from the top of the mountain to the bottom. Just a line- no other pockets of aspen. It was really neat. Then just a short ways after that, there was a perfect ‘S’ shape made of aspen. God’s creativity just never ceases to amaze me!
We finally found a spot where we could get down to the railroad and ride along it to avoid one unsafe corner on the road. The railroad ties were a little difficult for the horses to walk on and of course, there was the nagging in the back of our minds….. ‘what IF a renegade train were to use these old tracks today?!’ We were ready to jump into the river at a moment’s notice! As we rounded the bend on the old train track, we could see Grayson in the distance with his camera ready. Riding our horses along this abandoned railroad just made us feel like we were in the old west and getting ready for a train robbery! We had the urge to yell “stick ‘um up!” as we approached Grayson’s truck- which produced a great laugh by all.
Then Richard’s coat that he had draped behind him on the saddle got caught in the wind and blew off, sliding down Satchmo’s butt as it went. Satchmo was taken by surprise and gave a little buck and jumped forward. Since he was video taping at the time, Richard’s shocked facial expression was just priceless as he was jolted to paying full attention to his horse! I just happened to be turning around looking at him when it happened, and I was in stitches of laughter for many minutes after!
Then Richard got his turn to laugh at me! Tiska, who had been able to rest yesterday by just walking without anything on her back, was significantly more lively today. I chose to ride her today and give Apache the day off, which gave me hours of amusement. Since she is still a bit ‘green’ to ride, every move I made sent her squirting forward or jumping in some direction- I never knew which way we were going to go! It was something like being on an amusement ride! It provided great entertainment for all three of us- all day! It never ceases to amaze me how Tiska can be so good at packing, yet still be so green at being ridden. She is just too cute! But having a fifth horse now will give me the opportunity to ride her once in a while so hopefully she will become a steady riding horse too.
We found a beautiful pull-off area along the river to sit and have lunch. We were able to let the horses loose and graze while we were eating. It was such a peaceful place that Richard took a nap and I read my book for a little while. It’s nice to have Grayson along so that we can slow down and relax a bit.