Trout Lake Parade

Taboona 2 TL paradeTrout Lake Parade

Jack and Taboona’s performance in the Trout Lake Parade earlier this summer. Stay tuned for a video clip!

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On the Road

Caitlin here again. Here’s the slideshow (with audio by Jack and I) that I made after our trip. Enjoy!

Huckleberry Farewell

August 31st, 2012.  Because this was a Thursday and there was some rumor that my men’s group might try to meet with us by the Mill Pond, just for fun Caitlin dressed up in my clothes so she would be disguised as a man! Caitlin turns into JackThat  got a good laugh out of me and we got some pictures to verify this great impersonation, but none of the other men showed up!

September 1, 2012. I slept well and Taboona has maintained her mastery of the picket line so that helps me rest better and longer! We skipped breakfast and headed into Glenwood, stopped at the store had breakfast there and I stocked up on some fresh foods!  We made a brief stop at Jerry’s place; I wanted to show Caitlin where we had, first class, hospitality and horse accommodations the last time we went through Glenwood!

From there we headed on down the black top towards our final destination. We took one interesting back road just before the Wild Life Refuge but it popped right back out onto the high way after about a mile. We stopped every couple of hours for a rest. Seemed like Taboona was almost frantic to get back to TroutLake! We pulled into Felt Hollow at 3 pm, unhitched and put Taboona in the barn; she rolled in the sand and stayed on her back a long time scratching!

We spent one night at my home then Kya (my daughter) and Caitlin drove my old car up to the Huckleberry fields near Steam Boat Lake we met some other friends there; Rick and Family and Star and Annette from Goldendale.

We try to meet every year and pick berries together and have a good time being in the mountains again! Caitlin returned with Star and Annette and Kya and I stayed another two days picking Huckleberries with Rick and Family!

I hope you enjoyed hearing about our adventures. I am ending this blog here. It was a great adventure for me! I thank Caitlin for setting up this blog site for me and launching me more into the modern world!

For me to be able to spend so much, one on one time, with a wild horse, a Mustang from central Oregon,  a  captured member of the Stinking water Mountain Herd. I feel much honored and if I could speak for Taboona and what she thinks I know about horses and whether she had as much fun as I did, I am sure she would say; that I had the Cart before the Horse!


Rare Occasions

On the road againAugust 31, 2012. We were on the strait stretch and a gentle climb, so I got comfortable and lay down in the cart on my back with my feet up and I was leisurely telling my story (talking into the a voice recorder) of my walking adventure, of this spring. Caitlin was driving. I was completely involved in my task; my mind was also there in the recent past! Another log truck passed and Taboona headed off the road, fortunately there was a small road for her escape!

After that I realized this was not a time for me to relax and from then on Taboona could not handle any more logs trucks. Because she had done so well before I knew this was not really about log trucks but this was the only way she could really get through to us, that she was not happy! I was the stubborn one here and decided the next time a log truck approached, I would stop her and tie her head around in a tight bend, like I had to do on rare occasions when she would not wait for me to get in the cart. So I did that and turned her head toward the road, not away from the road (which may have been better?)  I also had Caitlin get out and hold a lead rope off to the ditch side, just in case.

By this time the log truck driver was aware that we were having a struggle so he had slowed way down, but when he passed Taboona’s eye she freaked! She reared up and would have gone over back wards if the cart had not been too heavy for her to lift, all the way over. I let go of her head and as soon as she came down she started backing and I was too shell shocked to apply the breaks! The log truck had really slowed down and we almost backed right into him, we missed a collision by inches. I then put the brakes on and got her straitened out!  So, OK Taboona was winning, she was now training me. I started to pay attention now. Caitlin let me know in a kind way that tying her head around was not the best training method in this case.

I think what Taboona was needing was more rest; I think we were demanding too much of one horse. Our cart looked like we were escaping the Dust Bowl with everything we owned, well sort of!

So these were her rules; we must stop for every on coming log trucks, when that satisfied her, she demanded we stop for every oncoming vehicle or motor cycle or group of motorcycles!

We gladly went along with her plan, she was willing to risk her life for it and ours as well, so we gladly obliged! There were also some very positive attributes to her plan, for everyone concerned. We noticed when we stopped, that more often than not the oncoming traffic also stopped! So we got to visit with people and Taboona liked that!

One of my favorite lines; a man stopped and looked us over and I could see he wanted to say something so he finely blurted out: “I see you have been shopping.” Caitlin and I got a lot of mileage out of some of these comments! It was kind of true we had pretty things tied all over the cart, not to mention two people and all their gear!

We took our time and fortunately there was not a lot of traffic. We eventually made it to the Mill Pond. We decide to camp here despite the no trespassing, to camping sighs that were popping up all over on account of the extreme fire danger!

We did our best to keep a low profile, the pond was great for swimming but there was no real good place for Taboona to access, so she did not get to swim, she did however have access to some green grass!

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Wish I was You

down into the canyon at sunsetAugust 29, 2012. We left about 8:30 in the morning. We took Fairgrounds Road, past the airport then Knight Road then Fish Hatchery Road, crossed Hill Road then onto Beebe Road then onto Winterstein Road then Calvert Road to the intersection of 142. We took Garrison Road to Counts Road   then onto the Glenwood hwy!

This was a really great way to cross a big part of the County and kept us off the main hwy and out of a lot of traffic!      It seemed like the country side was deserted, probably most everybody worked in town?  We made a couple of short stops and met a man on Counts Road that talked about his logging experience and how he had bought a place in British Columbia and could hardly wait to get there but still needed to work for a few more years. Talked about how he was logging the same ground now in some places for the third time! He seemed a little weary of his life but who really knows? We do what we think we have too.

We passed my friend, Jan Aslyn’s place and just kept going toward the Canyon. There were no log trucks and that was a blessing! I didn’t heed that little voice that told me to stop and stock up on water, so when we got to the Breaks overlooking the Klickitat Canyon where I wanted to camp, for the night, we could not, so  instead we unhitched and took a break. We had to make LydlePark before dark so we allowed ourselves a two hour break. We did try some horse acrobatic while we waited and Caitlin showed me some very “cool” horse stretches, Something Taboona seemed to enjoy!

By this time we were a seasoned team and we got Taboona all hitched in about a half hour! That was a record! It was 6:30 pm when we pulled out and there was a beautiful moon rise and still plenty of days light, we thought.  It was on this decent into the KlickitatCanyon where Caitlin took the photo of our shadow on the rock cut bank, the photo I use on my Business  Card!  Taboona was a lot more relaxed on this trip than our last trip into this Canyon. I was impressed and as we got closer she knew where we were going and picked up the pace!  Caitlin and I also had a conversation (and recorded it) of where we were going to bury me, when I finally reach the “end of my rope” so I pointed out the spot and the side of the Canyon where I thought it would be. A place that would be half way between TroutLake and Goldendale!

It was getting dark enough to turn on running light, if we had them and we were still three miles from our camp when a County Sheriff pulled up behind us.  I said to Caitlin that we were probably in for it now! The Sheriff pulled up along side of us and rolled down his window and said, “That is the coolest thing I have ever seen” and wished us a good evening! Well that was a relief, some how life was a little fuller now!  Right about dark we pulled into Lydle Park and a pick up truck  was pulling out. A man got out, he was smiling so we stopped and he said, “You guys really get around with that thing, the last time I saw you were on the other side of Goldendale on Fenton Lane!” We visited a little more then found our camp. But we did enjoy the fact that we were making other people happy as we went along. That made us feel even better about what we were doing for fun anyway!

We camped in the same spot we camped the last trip and had a good camp, I cooked up some supper and later played the dulcimer, we were tired but making some good time considering!  I slept pretty well but woke up very early to check on Taboona. She was getting so good on the picket line that she survived a potential disaster in the night. I tied her up so she could get to some new feed but the bushes were so thick I did not see the old sheep fence and coiled up barbed wire. Taboona had crossed all this mess several times in the night but did not get tangled up or get a single cut. I knew this was not dumb luck: she was paying attention to her feet and the location of her tether line! I moved her immediately! I don’t sleep well on these trips and I don’t think Taboona does either. This kind of travel is not unlike traveling in a boat, someone has to be on watch!

August 31, 2012. We left LydlePark at 10:30 am. We tanked up on water from a spring I noticed the last time I came through here. It was good water! And I have to relate that having several different size plastic buckets have made getting water possible on numerous occasions where a 4 or 5 gallon bucket simply would not fit into the small spring or seep!

As we were pulling out of the Canyon going up the steepest part of the hill a pick up truck, with a man and woman in it, stopped, we stopped. The man looked right at Caitlin and said; “I wish I was you, that looks like so much fun.” I thought that was a pretty strong statement but I realize the horse is still very alive in our collective consciousness and is not about to fade away anytime soon!

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Add to Cart

the cart

August 28, 2012. Caitlin, Taboona and I got up at 4:30 and left the Ranch at 7:30 am. Taking my usual route; Old Mountain, Badger Gulch, Woodland  Roads to Bickleton Hwy, then South on Fenton Lane then Number 4 Road then to East Collins. There was a cool West wind blowing when we got onto #4 road blowing as steady as a Trade wind. We took a long break at someone’s corral, everything feeling very dry and dusty. Each time we stopped there seemed to be some unique “treasure” however small, that Caitlin cleverly pieced into a work of art that we both agreed beautified the Cart. We nick named this; “add to cart!”

When we got to the overpass on Hwy 97, things suddenly got very interesting; the wind provided a wildly flapping (large) American Flag, vibrating political signs and horizontal real estate signs all basically in one place. This seemed to get Taboona pretty wound up for starters. Then some people simply stopped their cars and gawked at us .There were screaming girls an aggressive pit bull dog slamming itself against a fence hoping to attack us, an ambulance screaming by us and two tipped over garbage cans rolling back and forth in the wind!

In spit of all this activity Taboona was hanging in there. When we finally got a chance to cross the main drag, Columbus Ave. Taboona did a “two step” around a shiny man hole cover rocking the cart as we continued to roll down Collins Street to our friend Jessie’s.

      Caitlin was nearly in tears from this amazing comedy of happenstance! She was inspired to write a song about It.!  At Jessie’s things were rather sobering and even bleak so we did not stay long. After a drink of water for Taboona we passed most of the town 

and camped in a spot I discovered last week when I was at the fair grounds. We were along the Little Klickitat River on some unfenced land where I felt compelled to pick up a  lot garbage that other people had left… Places like this are so special to people like us, that travel by actual horse power!

!!! Rolling down # 4, Until we got to Jessie’s door,

We watered down that Pony and headed right down Mill Street.

There was a pit bull and an Ambulance.

We were going down East Collins in our very own Float!

There were screaming Girls and Gawker’s too

.    Going down East Collins doing the Man Hole Two Step Boogaloo!

Stopped down by the Klickitat, Had to pick up everybody’s trash.

Didn’t know what to do with my self, think I am going to Crash!

Camped under the Cottonwoods and tied my horse up to an Elderberry Tree,

Wishing this land was “free” for you and me!!!

By Caitlin Jones                            Composed; August 28, 2012

It took us eight hours from the time we left Ekone Ranch to our camp on the edge of Goldendale. That is pretty good time, considering!

I invited a coupe of friends over (Stare and Annette) they rode in on their bicycles and brought us some snacks and we did our best to visit but I think we were ready for a rest. There was a nice pool in the river here and I took a bath. The wind died down after dark, no one bothered us and I actually got some sleep! In the morning a car drove in but left right away. This was a really nice place and I feel so lucky to have been able to camp here and be surrounded by nature so close to town and feel relatively safe!

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Oak Flat Creek

August 19, 2012. Rick told me stories of the area and experiences he had had here when he was a kid and then told me some violent stories of some events in Alaska involving boats and guns and killings. All true stories. After he left I was wondering what kind of vibes that was going to bring in to this camp here so exposed along a road next to a gate with no trespassing signs. This was not my idea of a good campsite.

I had to push the cart into some bushes and slept in the only level spot right next to the road. Sometime in the night a couple horses came down and huffed around and got us excited and then ran off and did not return. I got back to sleep and about 3; 30 am the CountySheriff pulls up. I set up in my sleeping bag whip on some pants and introduce myself he opened his car door and we shook hands. That is how close to the road I was!

Once he figured out what we actually were he seemed to relax. He said his name was Dave and I asked him if he was on his nightly patrols and he said no, he had got a call about a domestic dispute on Saxton Bane and decided to go back to Goldendale via Oak Flat Road. He asked me a couple of times if I was going to leave in the morning as if he had forgotten if he had asked me that, or not,  already. I reassured him I was going to probably be leaving early.  In spite of the fact Dave was friendly and even impressed with my outfit. One can not simply be wandering around without being under general suspicion! So we said our good nights and I did not sleep well after and another car came through early in the morning.

August 20, 2012. After leaving Oak Flat Creek we pulled a pretty steep hill and up on the flat land a cool breeze was blowing. We turned East on the Bickleton high way and just as I turned onto Old Mountain Road, A women in a pick up truck on her way to work stopped to talk. She told me she had farmed with horses but got hurt and had to give it up for the time being. She invited me to visit if I needed to use her corral. Another act of kindness to a traveler using a horse and cart!

Taboona was highly motivated when we got to Badger Gulch, she now, knew her location! So we plodded on into Ekone. I pulled into my camp site and unhitched and was glad to be off the roads, for a spell.

I stayed at the Ranch for another week trying to do my best to fulfill my volunteer status and spend some quality time with my daughter, Kya at the Klickitat County Fair where she was participating, but mostly I planned for my return trip to TroutLake, except this time I would have a passenger! Caitlin Jones had decided to make the trip with us!

Caitlin has been a participant at the Ranch for many years;  first as a Camper then as a Counselor. After working with her for two years during Wilderness Week I have nick named her the “Rock” for her amazing talent of  wrangling Kids, ( Campers)!

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Ask the Wind

August 19, 2012. Taboona and I headed out and soon passed our favorate sighns!  Along Rodgers Road these  legitimate signs that actually say; “Feel Free to Hunt Here”! Wow and it is nice land that has been planted in some native vegetation like sage brush and Juniper trees. And the grass is high and there are deer moving around and signs of water! I would like to think that this is the start of some big change in private land holdings and some kind of interfacing with the “have’s and the have not’s” ! Quite a different  story from the usual, No Trespassing,  You will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law, and other forms of No!

This is wind mill country; they dominate the southern sky line. I was thinking as we plugged along how;  people make money off the wind but does anyone pay the wind for its efforts? Is the wind interested in supporting hair dryers and keeping cities lit up all night? Has any one thought to ask the wind? Why do I think that this hasn’t occurred to most people?

We crossed Fenton Lane on to Saxton Bane and now I realized we were not going to make Ekone Ranch, tonight. The farther we went on Saxton Bane the more interesting the landscape was. We stopped for a rest when we got to Oak Flat Road. It was here I met a young man named Isaac Lewis, who had known Ray and we had some interesting things in common. I mentioned how I had talked to a fellow named Kenny Marvell, a veritable historian of this area! A man who was mentioned to me, by the old timers in Bickleton.  We talked about my and Ray’s idea of a Cross County Trail and the old Ell Trail that Kenny mentioned. Isaac mentioned that his brother was doing a documentary film on the old Ell trail! Well all this was very exciting to me and I asked Isaac if we could continue our conversation at a later date. So that was our plan. I started to get some enthusiasm about getting as many people together as I could find, who were interested in a cross County trail!

Isaac gave me his business card and drove off to his home and Taboona and I kept going East now on Oak Flat Road. We were going mostly down hill now but just before the bottom we pulled into a small gravel pit. I tied her to a rock and took a rest. I had sent Rick a text giving our location and to my surprise he found us! He checked out the possibility of camping for the night at the bottom of the draw and then went back to his home and made us a couple of roast beef sandwiches!

Taboona and I went to the bottom and realize that camping was not probably going to get any better for the night so we made the best use of this wide spot in the road. Rick thought we would be alright and no one would even drive by all night.

There was water in the draw and there was a deep pool below the bridge so I slipped in and took a bath. This water was cold and tasted very good too. I packed some up for Taboona and she demanded more and would not drink the spare water we had got from a pond, earlier! She kept pointing her nose to the creek and basically told me to get some more of the good water!

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No Gate!

August 19, 2012. I decided to forgo a food shopping excursion and packed up and headed out!  I was going to take highway 97 back, but at the last second I changed my mind and went up the Bickleton Highway. After about 3 miles the highway veered left but I went strait on an obvious road easement, one I had also seen on the Metzger Map. I was hoping to tie into Willis Road. After a mile or so there was a very funky gate. We went through that but after another half mile there as another fence with no gate so we turned back. Of course Taboona knew all along that this was a waste of time!

I walked her back and we scraped the spring strut getting back on the pavement but no major damage. After another mile or so I noticed a fellow had pulled over and was waiting with his camera. I liked this person already simply by observing the whole scene unfolding. There was a wide pullout across from where he was waiting so we pulled in there for a much deserved rest. It was here we met Bob Jarrard, I liked his demeanor and he obviously liked Taboona. He commenced to tell me a little of his history with horses and x girl friends with horses and how he restored old cars now for cash and was on his way to look at a Knuckle Head Harley Davidson motor cycle. We exchanged address and he invited me to come and visit his place (off Woodland Road) sometime.  Who knows if we had not taken the dead end (road / right of way), we might not have met Bob?

As soon as we got to Willis Road we took a right we went about a mile  we  pulled up under a big Locus tree. There were four of five trees here probably left over from an old homestead? In the ever moving shade of this fine old tree I soaked Taboona’s Timothy hay cubes and applied some bacon grease to Taboona’s weird facial disease that we first noticed when we were at Ekone. This was not ring worm and was a bit of a mystery but my friend Sandy Ayers was correct in her assessment that salty bacon grease might help! Also I noticed that Taboona’s rear ankles were a little swollen but usually by morning this “puffiness” goes back  down to normal?

As I have all the time in the world to watch her back feet while she moves along I noticed one day how her hind feet move. How her right hock moves in a “U” shape pattern unlike here left hock that goes strait up and strait back down. As if there is a “hitch” in her right hip joint? My, where is your horse chiropractor when you need him/her?

While we were resting and passing the hottest part of the day here, a small pick up truck suddenly stops in a cloud of dust and a youngish man with sunglasses steps out and introduces himself as Dusty, and says, “I haven’t seen anything like this for years” (referring to horse and cart) We had a pleasant conversation and I was interested in his divided mind (as I can relate). He had recently left his place in Southern Oregon near Bogg Hot Springs where he and his family had operated a large cattle operation for many years. How he simply could not afford to live there and the days in the saddle were so long he seldom saw his family, yet he sorely missed the life style of a working cowboy! The real clincher as his story unfolded was his father was in jail and the ranch had to be sold to pay off the debts his father had incurred! But they  held onto 400 acres with a 100 gallon a minute, fresh water spring!  After we talked for some time sharing several stories about our lives. I was happy that not all was lost for Dusty and that his family had held on to the Spring, somehow that seemed to give a Hope for this hard working, salt of the earth, sort of man!

I took the beer that Dusty offered me but could not drink it for some reason it hurt my stomach? After questioning him about range management and getting the low down; how the cattle simply followed the water moving down in elevation as the springs dried up and the older cattle knew where the next spring was and the rest followed and how ever year the range came in with thick grass. It made perfect sense; besides range management was not why they lost the Ranch! I watered the locus tree with his beer, even though I am sure it did not need it. I was certainly impressed with the caliber of people I was meeting on the small back roads of the County.

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Rodgers Road

I spent several days a Ekone Ranch and played a major role in their Wilderness Camp teaching Primitive  Skills but after that I was looking for something to do that suited me and my horse and cart. In other words I wanted to hit the road again so I decided to make a trip into Goldendale  and visit their  Saturday Market!

August 18,  2012.  Got up at 3:30 am and got Taboona hooked up,  I had to do this mostly by feel in the dark,  by 5 am there was a hint of light so we took off.  At old Mountain Road we took a right (North) and eventually headed West, we went out near Munson Prairie then took a little used road to the SW and went along this until it intersected a well used gravel road, then we took a left and eventually ended up, down on Woodland Road. This took about two hours. Now it was beginning to get hot and I was glad I filled up a five gallon container at a spring along Old Mt. Road!

I text  my friend Rick (a long time Local) and he came along shortly there after with some snacks and some good stories, as always. He said he would catch up to me later. So when we got out to Bickleton Hwy we got off as soon as possible onto Fenton Road heading south now. From Fenton we took a right onto Rodgers  Road this was our favorite kind of road small and seldom used! And along this road, for the first time ever, so far in my life, I saw a sign that said; “Feel Free to Hunt Here” Wow and some very nice land at that!

We had to turn left  on Willis Road then right  on No 4  Road which turned into East Collins. A mile or so before town,  Rick  found us and we took a break. Rick went out ahead and scouted the streets that would lead us most directly to the Market and that was helpful! We finally got to the Market at 1 pm and the Market closed at two! I should have left a day earlier! Even though I had made a major  miscalculation  I made my best effort the last hour of the Market to meet people and made some new friends and talked to some old friends and got to understand the protocol of the marketers.

After the Market, Rick sussed out the back way to the other park, which was a big help! I unhitched Taboona. Rick and I played a few tunes together. Then he left and found some white gas  for my stove and then went off with his piano player to their band practice  and I took a well deserved bath in the river. I changed my clothes, fixed up some dinner did my horse chores, set up my tent and got some sleep in between waking up and checking on Taboona.  She is now expert on the tether rope and I still get a kick out of watching her scratch her belly on the grass and how quick she can go from lying down to being on all fours!

August 19, 2012.  I got up early and prepared to leave town.  A  couple of young men walked by with their fishing poles and  alcohol on their breath. We conversed some and they told me of a couple of other places I could camp where the cops would not bother me and where they sometimes had wild and big parties. I was not without relief when they continued on there way to where ever!

A young woman pulled into the park and let loose her two dogs that immediately started to attack Taboona. I watched closely as she ran at full speed from one end of her rope to the other and at the same time getting some good defensive kicks in!

! Fortunately this was short lived as the woman called Cynthia got her dogs under control and apologized profusely to me.  No one was hurt and I was super impressed with Taboona’s  composure under stress! Cynthia  mentioned; she had spent sometime with Ray out at Ekone Ranch during the ‘70’

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