Saturday, August 1, 2009

Pasture Time

The other day, the guys who keep cows on my mom's place asked mom if they opened the gates and turned on the water tanks if Megan and I would move cows for them. I thought it would be great to get Frosty out and give him a chance to start working like a big boy. I've ridden him "out" before, but never moved cows with him...

Having had been raised the way I was, I personally don't believe a horse is broke unless they know how to ride out in a pasture and navigate up and down hills, cross ditches with or without water in them, how to avoid cactus and soapweeds. Arena stuff is easy after they master that. Frosty did reasonably well considering it has been two years since he has been ridden in the pasture. He motored along checking things out but didn't get excited or bothered by the big wide open. Navigating down the hills seems to be a challenge for him-as with most greenies.

Megan and I found the cows at the far end of the pasture and started moving them toward the gates. I started up one hill with cows moving in front of me and sent Megan to the next hill over to make sure there wasn't any in the draw on the other side of that. About 1/2 way up the hill, I look back and see a cow standing down in a little side draw. So I turned Frosty around and headed back. He was a little excited since he couldn't see Megan and Rip anymore and when he saw the cow standing down there he wasn't too sure if he wanted to ride around her. But I booted him farther down the hill, so the cow would not cut back and head the wrong direction. About that time that cow turned to face us and took a step toward us.

When that cow stepped toward Frosty, his head came up and he froze, but only for an instant. Before I could even blink, he spun out and scattered. I was fairly unprepared for that and the next thing I know, I am hanging off the side of my horse desperately trying to get everything gathered up and get back in the middle of him. Holy Moly can that horse move when he wants too!

But me hanging off the side of him was too much for Frosty and he blew up and started bucking. For a couple of jumps I thought I had him. I really did. But I just could not get my reins gathered up and Frosty was really starting to get some oomph into those bucks. He had started out bucking up the hill, but he was turning and heading down the hill and I knew I was never going to get his head up, so I rolled off.

I landed pretty softly, all things considered and just kept rolling to get away from him. Frosty really went to town then. He bucked all the way to the bottom of the hill. Spun a few circles and stopped facing me. I really wished I could have gotten a picture of his face. His head was up and he had a completely bewhildered look on his face. Like "What the hell was THAT all about?".

Poor kid! He was blowing and snorting when I walked up to him, but stood while I got the reins gathered up. Good horse! He didn't even break one of my reins. He bucked hard enough to set the saddle up on his neck though and pop the center snap on the breast collar. I led him off a few steps and readjusted everything. Gathered up my reins and stepped back on. He wanted to blow again, but this time I was ready for it, kept his head up and got him lined out-back up the hill.

About that time Megan came back over the hill and I told her to get that cow and push her over the hill. Frosty wanted nothing to do with that horse-eating cow.

The rest of the ride was a little hairy. Frosty was pretty sure those cows were going to eat him if they turned to look at him. So we stayed close to Megan and Rip to give him a little security and stayed back as much as we could. Poor Rip got quite the workout moving that bunch mostly by himself. Frosty and I were pretty useless. But towards the end, there was 3 bulls that were getting tired and I had to help Megan somewhat. Frosty sure didn't want to ride up there, didn't like me slapping my leg or hollaring "hup" at those bulls, but we got it them through the gate anyway.

Whew!

Mom showed up on the 4-wheeler with the salt, so she finished following them to the tanks and Megan and I headed home. Frosty was a little livelier on the ride home than he had been on the ride out. But it's nearly 2 miles back to the house from the gates we were at, so he had plenty of time to get his head right again and settle down. By the time we topped the last hill by the house, he was back to his old self and had settled into a swinging walk.

Megan can never resist showing off...


I told her I would trade horses with her next time. Hehehehe!

Frosty is really such a sweet boy...
He just needs a lot more pasture miles. We can do that!

One good thing about it. I found out I can still tuck and roll pretty darn good. I have kind of been fearful of getting bucked off the last few years, but now that it has happened. It wasn't so bad. Look out the rest of you broncs...cause I'm BACK and just as bouncy as I used to be.


13 comments:

Danielle Michelle said...

Gotta love 'em! Mine decided a flag was going to eat him, knock his feet out from under him...something in a parade...nevermind he's supposed to be an old pro at it. We had a show and needless to say the rodeo started early. I may have made 8 seconds, but not much more than that. I still love him.

Andrea said...

Oh my goodness, girl, you are a lot stickier than me!! I bail at the thought of bucking. Okay, maybe not that bad. I am glad you are okay. I think it's so funny how some horses are just scared of cows. You would think that all horses would chase cows like it's in their blood. My four year old gelding is terrified of cows. He even lived with them for a while. He just doesn't want anything to do with them. I am glad your tuck and roll came back to you!! :)

Mikey said...

You go girl, tuck and roll!! Lol, I love that phrase, and have often thought it as I'm flying thru the air...
Very proud of you, you've still got it!! He looks like a handfull too. Love Megan as always, being silly... lol

texasnascarcowgirl said...

Glad you didn't get hurt! I love to ride a greenie out in the pasture, it's always a good time.

Kristen said...

those are some gorgeous horses! I'd love to drive by your pasture sometime! We head up to Buffalo, SD at least once a year!

City girl turned Country Girl said...

Oh My Gosh!!! You handled that great!!! Like I would expect any less LOL!! I'm so glad you landed right!! That's my issue, it's not that I am worried about the actual getting bucked off on my newbies but it's the landing...Since it wasn't so great the last time I'd rather not deal with it again!!

Kuddos to you!! You rock girl!!

my verification word was BOOTY LOL!

Leah Fry said...

I don't quite have that sense to tuck and roll yet. I think I've figured out when it's a lost cause and I need to bail, but I sure don't have the landings down yet. And I don't bounce anymore!

BrownEyed Cowgirls said...

I was telling my brother what happened and he started laughing at me. He said, "Yea, you think you can still tuck and roll and bounce, just see what happens if something would really blow up with you."
Well, I'm not exactly planning on taking up bronc-riding-LOL, but at least I'm done worrying overly much about a few bucks. It's not that I ever thought I could ride a bucking horse all that well, it's just that I got worried about my landings. hehehe.

Paint Girl said...

Oh my goodness! Now that would have seriously freaked me out, only because of my fear issues with being bucked off! Way to hang in there, and tuck and roll!
My mom just did that the other day while we were riding, she actually tucked and rolled, I don't think she has ever been told to do that, it just was her first instinct. I watched the whole thing happen and I think that helped prevent more serious injuries than what she got.

Adventures of a Horse Crazed Mind said...

You are such a cowgirl!! I say, I do think Megan comes by it honestly! Glad that you are not hurt and happy to hear that you can still tuck and roll....can I say "You go girl!" or is that totally geeky? Every time I think I want a young horse I have to remind myself that even the most quiet and good minded horses loose their $hit every now and then:)

Melanie said...

Oh I do not envy you at all...lol!!! Didn't you hurt the next day in places that you had forgotten about???

I recently had a similar experience out on the trail, and on a green broke mare. I managed to stay on-barely!-but she wasn't bucking. Just spooking at me being thrown around like a ragdoll on her back. :)

Glad you are safe and sound, and I am glad that Frosty had his first lesson out on the range. I would still take him for ya'! :)

C-ingspots said...

I loved your telling of this little story!! Makes me feel good to hear that even a true cowgirl like you hits the dirt ever so often. My granny used to say that "only those who never ride, never fall". So true. Anyway, you had me cracking up and I could just see the whole scenario unfold in my mind. Too funny!!! Wish I could have been there with the video camera - we coulda made us some money fer sure!! :) My little mare Kadie spun and scattered just like that years ago over a spotted cow being goofy with slobber flying and coming right at us. At first she just stood there and watched, but when he got too close for comfort. Bam!! Like a bullet, she was outta there!! I stayed on but my butt was out of the saddle and I was riding her rump scrambling for my reins!! Whew!! Good memories!! She still don't trust spotted cows. :)

Patches said...

Oh goodness, so funny that I should read this post today. I've been lurking for a while, reading your back logs, trying to get caught up, but I have to comment on this one... I was just bucked off my youngin' last night. I had literally JUST been telling my friend how wonderful, calm, quiet and level headed she always is, despite being so young and green, not 2 minutes before I ate dirt. About half way around the first lap of the arena after that convo and one of the other horses in the arena loped by a little too close, snorted at just the wrong time and BAM! We're a little bronc! lol I tried desperately to get her disengaged, but knew it wasn't going to happen so I bailed. It was a bit reassuring though. I was able to tuck and roll and the sand was pretty deep and soft so, other then being plastered in dirt and a little embarrassed (SOOOO many witnesses!), I was just fine. I bounced alright and got right back on and know exactly what you mean here! While I don't want to do it again if I can help it, I know I CAN and it's survivable! lol

On another similar note, the last time I got lawn darted was when a buffalo turned and looked at us wrong (first cutting practice of the year). My horse turned and was OUTTA there before I could even think about what was going on! LOL

Anyways, loving your blog! Can't wait to get all caught up!