Archives for June 2016

Monday, June 20, 2016 – Finally, A Ride at Home!!

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After another busy week of cleaning and repairing and running around, Hubby and I decided to take a ride around the "neighborhood," having been reassured by our nearest neighbor (whose trails we need to cross to get to other trails) that permission was given, we headed out the end of the driveway, through the gate, and off into the woods! We were pleased that the trails were all in pretty good shape, just a couple of limbs down, obviously newly fallen after a serious storm last week, where we had a fierce straightline wind gust that didn't last long, but was VERY strong for a few moments as a front came through. It knocked down a dead tree in our front yard, which I had to clear during the week because it crossed over the driveway, and several smaller trees were bent nearly parallel to the ground. I had also done some other chainsawing over the weekend as well, on trees that had come down since our last trip home and before. Anyway, we haven't ridden back here in such a long time, the trails all seemed new to us, which was wonderful! One trail we followed skirted the edge of an area that had been horribly clear cut a few years ago, but we were happy to see that a lot of new young trees were quickly filling it in. That, unfortunately, ended when we came across a log that was too high to get over, and too thickly shrubbed to get around, so we turned around, with plans to bring a saw to cut it or a rope to move it by horsepower enough to get by next time. We followed a few more trails, some of which looked familiar, some we had completely forgotten, and noted lots of side trails for another day. With perfect weather, it was a fabulous ride, everyone behaved themselves, the dogs loved being out in the woods, the horses were great (with only one unexpected hop from Apollo which was quickly corrected), and we had a wonderful time! First time I've ridden here and GPS mapped it, so it was quite a treat to see exactly where on the mountain we traveled. We most definitely have to clear that log, because that trail leads to the western edge of the plateau, where the views into the Nashville basin are stunning, and there's a place known locally as Sunset Point, which describes it perfectly, an overhanging rock that looks due west, with a creek/waterfall nearby. A gorgeous point I want to find again! Anyway, it was a great ride, we were out about two hours, just right for our first time out in nearly 3 weeks!

Monday, June 6, 2016 – Couch Delivered!

Having decided that we were likely to stay home this summer, Hubby and I made a few comfort decisions, to buy a new theatre-style reclining love seat, and last week getting a new 60″ Sony HDTV. Can’t believe how prices have dropped, the last 60-inch we bought was a projection TV in the early 90’s for $3000, this new one was barely $700, and of course, the quality is unbelievable. Two guys came to deliver the couch, and I had arranged for them to take the old TV away (thank goodness the furniture store owner agreed!), it had quit working last Spring, and we had been bringing the TV from the RV in to the house in meantime, during our short stays at home. So now we had a pretty good setup, with our new TV and our new couch. Fortunately, there’s so much work to be done on the house and property, it will keep us busy and not sitting around all day! But it will let us relax in the evenings, as is our habit.

Sunday, June 5, 2016 – Washout, Head for Home

A whopping gully-washer of a rain storm hit early this morning, and even though it started clearing up by late morning, most folks had already decided to head home, and we decided to do the same. Packed up and were heading home about noon, with a quick stop at Walmart to pick up a few things, got home by mid-afternoon, and settled back down for a relaxing evening.

Saturday, June 4, 2016 – Another Day at the Rendezvous 2016

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Spent the day at the book selling books, chatting with folks, dodging raindrops, and otherwise hanging around with horse folks!

Friday, June 3, 2016 – Disappointing Ride at Circle E

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Well, after getting up with the alarm so that we could get in a ride in time to get back to our vending area by lunch, Hubby and I were saddled up and on the trail a little later than we hoped, by 10:30, but as the Green trail I had selected was only 4.5 miles long, we figured we'd be back in time. We were delayed because I put boots on Apollo, but Hubby couldn't find Clio's boots, so unless we misplaced them (not likely), they must have been stolen from the trailer at some point, darn it. We finally made our way to the trailhead on the far side of the sawmill, and headed down a dirt and gravel road that looked like a logging road, and it had quite a downhill grade. We followed them map until we reached the turnoff to the Green trail, then missed another turn, but realized afterward that that section had a series of XXX on the map, indicating it was seriously muddy, and essentially closed off. We soon reached the "Pretty Place" on the map, a wide open field with about a 300 degree view of the Nashville Basin area, gorgeous. Could see the area of the plateau where we live, just beautiful. We continued down a gravel road (not liking the footing much, a wide gravel/dirt road, slippery with the rain we had yesterday), until we reached the turnoff to the Green Trail, where in that section on the map was marked "Aggressive." We debated between gravel easy and unknown "aggressive," but since it seemed to be a single track trail more to out liking we struck out on that. While the trail was rocky, it was less so than the road, but it was quite overgrown so we had to push a lot of wet leaves and branches out of the way. Then we headed down into a very slippery and steep incline, where I had to do a few quick switch-backs just to keep from sliding straight down the hill on the mud. It was, indeed, quite challenging, and Hubby's mare slipped badly a few times, almost going to her knees because it was so slippery. We finally made it through the worst section, with a pretty good climb back up to the plateau, then had a bit easier (though still gravel) road for a bit. Then we had another serious climb, and halfway up, about a quarter mile from camp (though we didn't know that at the time), the sky opened up and we had to break out the rain gear. The final push was up was on a sort of rock wall, no loose stones, but no real steps either, just a lot of crags for the horses' to climb on, but pretty slippery. When I finally reached the top, I realized that was the trailhead on the other side of the campground from where we left, and was SO glad we hadn't tried to go out that way, it would have been quite a challenge going down! We moseyed through the campground to the barn and quickly put the horses away. We can't say we really enjoyed the ride, though we were glad to get the horses out, but with the stoney footing and the pouring rain, it wasn't our favorite :-). I trust there are other trails that are better, but we probably won't have time or inclination to find them. Afterward, we headed over to the dining hall to man our booth for the day, where we had a great location to hear (and sometimes see, when trucks weren't parked in front of us) the bandstand, which had non-stop music all day and evening. I brought Billy with us for awhile, and he behaved like our little greeter for awhile. Managed to sell a few books today, have heard that tomorrow will be a busier day. Have met some new folks and gotten reacquainted with some recent friends we've met at other events. Took a dinner break, then came back for a while before packing it in for the night.

Thursday, June 2, 2016 – Travel to Circle E for Rendezvous 2016

After weeks of being home, doing doctors’ appointments, cleaning house, and generally performing the mundane duties of ordinary life, we finally packed up the RV to take a weekend trip to nearby Circle E Guest Ranch near Winchester, TN. Though it’s only about 40 miles or so away from where we live, and are on the same plateau (Cumberland) that we are, we had never been here before, though we took a short drive up here last Friday after meeting some friends in Monteagle (and after an appearance on a local TV show), just to check it out. We had read somewhere that the road here was twisty and windy, but compared to what Hubby and I are used to, it was easy. Yes, a fairly steep climb, but a two-lane state highway with a full extra shoulder all paved, so no problem. We headed out by 10:30, and arrived in little more than an hour. We checked in at the office, which took an extraordinarily long time, as every time the woman tried to put in my information, it was deleted or it wouldn’t take my payment. It took four tries before she finally had to jury-rig it in order to make it work. They didn’t even have a record of my deposit, which I had made weeks ago! Finally, we moved across the street to the secondary campground (for which we were grateful, to stay away from the madding crowd), and backing in was a challenge because the sites are at a 90 degree angle, and there were a number of trees in the way, but with Hubby’s excellent guidance we managed to get in with only a few angle changes. Once we got in the site, we went back to put the horses in their assigned stalls, only to discover that someone was already in both of them! I don’t understand how people can be so rude, simply taking stalls without checking in first, but there we were, wondering what to do next! I was tempted to just move them out to some other empty stall, but I don’t really like to handle other people’s horses, nor matter how rude and inconsiderate they might be, and when I called the office, they had not clue (surprise, surprise) whose horses they might be, and we ended up having to put ours in a single large stall on the back side of the outside of the barn, instead of inside in two stalls. Whatever, I guess having the two of them together is probably better anyway, but, seriously, having to be forced to make lemonade out of the lemons we were handed is only an indication of our character, not theirs. Anyway, we got them settled in, then went back to the RV and finished setting that up, before heading back over to the dining hall to see where our vendor spot was. Turned out we could have a place on the porch, which meant we didn’t need to set up our little gazebo tent, which was just as well because the forecast called for a lot of rain this weekend (naturally, we haven’t had a drop since we got home, now it’s a 50-70% chance!), and I was a bit afraid the wind from any storms would blow it away. We got set up, and hung around for a while before heading back to camp to put up the satellite dish and settle in for the night. Got caught in a real downpour, unfortunately, but once that ended, we had some pretty skies as the evening wore on. Looking forward to checking out the trails tomorrow!