Sunday, May 21, 2023 – A Final Ride with Mike at Salamonie River SF

Hi Sweetie!
Had a good night sleep with my earplugs again, got up around 9:00 after reading for an hour plus, did my chores, had breakfast, then chatted for a bit with Mike before we finally started to get ready to ride. There’s a land trust area across the river from the state forest called Kokiwanee, and we had heard that some of the riders from camp had gone over there yesterday, so I downloaded a map and we headed out in that direction. We took the yellow trail to the end, then found a trail on the other side by a waterfall (Kissing Falls, apparently), and followed the trail up. That led to a series of steps which didn’t really look like it was fit for horses, but there didn’t seem to be an alternative, so I went ahead and headed up there. There were some nails that were sticking up, but we managed to avoid them all. We plowed on to a number of other trails that really looked like they were only hiking trails, and we didn’t see any indication that horses had been on the trails, so I could never figure out where those other horses were going. Several times we would start down a trail and turn around when it became to narrow, so my plan went out the window. Eventually, we headed back to see if we could find another way down to the river, and there was one other trail, but I was worried about it being right on the edge of a drop off, so I dismounted and walked down a ways, and sure enough, there was a corned with a little piece of fence someone had put in, and the only way around it was too sharp a turn and too close to the edge for a horse to get through safely. I wasn’t about to take that risk! So we went back up and tried to find another way, but that trail had a little bridge that didn’t seem safe even for horses, and another climb of steps even steeper than the first one! Eventually we decided to head back down the main trail (the only one really fit for horses, and way too short and boring to be worth riding more than once), to a parking lot and a road, and we ended up taking the road back around to where we crossed the river, finally getting back on track and into the state forest again. Came across some other riders who were trying to figure out how to get around a downed tree, and I lent him my camp saw so he could cut off a limb and make it more easily passable (we had found a way around it previously), and before long, we were back in camp. Not exactly how I planned it, but it was still an adventure! By now most of the camp was empty, and within an hour or so, everyone else had gone as well. I let the horses out to graze and started putting stuff away, then made us some dinner, which I preferred to do rather than go out again, then finished putting pretty much everything else away, so I’ll be ready to get an early start in the morning. Less than 300 miles, but I either have to go cross country, or go a bit out of the way to stay on highways, so it will take longer than usual. At least I know where I’m going this time, hopefully the spot I like will be open. It’s been a lot of fun here, but it was a lot busier that I expected over the weekend, particularly with the cooler weather. Anyway, time to move on! Getting a little ahead of the weather, but at least I’m not sweating like a pig! I can always add layers! We’ll worry about that tomorrow. Good night, my darlin’! Love you!

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