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Musings, travels and other miscellanious categories

First Big Snow in Denver

First Big Snow in Denver

The first big snow

has arrived much to the delight of children and landscapes here in the high desert. Full of water, it was a wet, sloppy mess but the old cottonwoods stood guard over the field protecting us from the winds. It is good to have the moisture before the cold, dark days of winter but the dog is not happy that his feet have to be wiped off every time he comes in the door. I have resorted to giving him a treat as a reward for his patience “spoiled” is the word one might use!

The horses are running around the field, except for one who just looks at the rest of them as if they were crazy! It is fun to see them leap and buck and kick up their heels. Their manes and tails flying as they cross and circle around the standing mare. They remind me of the neighbor’s kids next door who love to run around and chase the dog in the snow, they are all like a bunch of puppies. It is such a delight to hear their peels of laughter. Sometimes I borrow the kids to come and play at my house just so I get to hear them laugh, the parents call it kid sitting, I call it an excuse to indulge in kid time without actually having kids, or grandkids. it’s a secret playdate, but shhhh, don’t tell the parents how much fun we have together, they might start charging me!

Autumn Cattle Drive in the Pawnee Grasslands

Autumn Cattle Drive in the Pawnee Grasslands

Autumn Cattle Drive

Autumn has come to the Pawnee Grasslands and it is time for a cattle drive. The Colorado Cattle Company was a great fun place to stay and get our cowboy groove going this fall.

The motto of this fabulous dude ranch is “where the guests are the cowboys” and boy it is true!

From day one we were put to work, checking on calves, moving bulls, inspecting water tanks and having the requisite picnic at the haunted farmhouse. One morning was spent playing rodeo (no prizes taken this year!) And to cap off the week we helped another rancher gather and move his herd through a beautiful part of one of the conservation areas to his ranch.

This is an adults only working ranch, full of opportunities to live your cowboy dream, ride the range and round up some cattle with the wranglers as well as eat some of the best ranch food I have ever had the pleasure of tasting! I loved how well my horse was matched up with me since I tend to forget I am riding when my camera is glued to my face!

Hours in the saddle, pushing a couple hundred head of cattle along through the tall grasses on a beautiful Friday in September! Life just doesn’t get better than this!

Pawnee Grasslands

The Pawnee Grasslands are up in the northeastern corner of Colorado and were once part of the dust bowl when the grasses were removed by farmers hoping to farm the area. In the early 1960’s the National Grasslands were set aside to preserve and restore them to support wildlife and natural resources. They have been remarkably successful in the restoration and many ranchers are conservators of vast parcels where water tanks for the cattle also provide much needed water for the wildlife.

In Colorado, the Pawnee Buttes rise 350 feet to an elevation nearly a mile high above the plains marking this beautiful area so it can be seen from miles away. The grasslands are full of wildflowers, five different kinds of native grasses and lots of different animals. One morning we learned how to take porcupine quills out of a horses nose!

It was so great to get away from the busy city life and hang out with the horses and cattle for a week. If you’re ever in the mood to release your inner wrangler, this is the place to go!