Planting flowers - we did a lot of this. We did it in the rain, in the heat, in the snow (seriously). And when we finished, that was not the end of 2 weeks - 24/7 - flower duty. Ohhhhhh no. Then there’s watering, fertilizing, weeding, deer-proofing, watering lots more, okay a little less water, dead-heading, weeding some more….
Lesson learned: flowers are not worth it. Bless those who spend their time to beautify the world with flowers, but it is not for me. I’d rather look at the mountains and red hills anyway. Those are things no one had to work on daily to be oh-so-beautiful.
Fun fact: I had to shovel snow and ice off several of the flower beds before I began planting. See above re: lesson learned.
Pictured are some “before & after” shots of the flower beds. At least it’s a huge improvement from May to August!
Dan was lucky enough to have his birthday while at the ranch (again!) and Laura was brave enough to make Czech Kolaches for birthday dessert for all - guests included. (recipe: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/kolaches-i/detail.aspx) They were gooooood.
Happy Birthday to Dan!
I came back from a quick weekend in WI to:
1. Alyssa (Dan’s girlfriend) is here!
2. Herb is here!
3. Lane is gone :(
4. A newly sparked forest fire above the neighboring ranch which is still burning (and making everywhere smell like bonfire) 5 days and running.
Here are some pictures Dan and I took of our view of the fire on a short hike. Sometimes we see only smoke, sometimes we see actual trees ablaze. The Forest Services are keeping close tabs on it (now at 3,600 acres and of course, growing) but aren’t doing too much to extinguish it in the name of natural disasters.
Part deux of Arneson’s Come West!
Just some great shots of these silly wabbits.
On the chair lift.
On top of the Grand Targhee mountain, capturing video clips.
In Aric’s Jeep, on one of the most scenic rides ever.
In a saddle - on the phone - at the Million Dollar Cowboy Bar.
At the Jackson Hole rodeo.
NOT getting dead in white water rapids.
Arneson’s come West!
2 part post
Latham showed up just in time for our weekly steak fry at the ranch. We had 2 families for guests that week, but also Brian’s (the manager’s) brother and family were visiting - a more-is-merrier situation at the steak fry for sure. Some of the guests got up and sang, Brian’s brother sang and played guitar - all in addition to Dan and Natalia’s weekly musical appearance. The first picture captures a steak-fry-fun moment.
The guests this week were also avid game players - specifically Liar’s Dice. They invited us crew to play along with them. With 10 players per game, they generally took at least an hour. It’s a great game for the masses - we never even got to Catch Phrase.
When the rest of the Arneson family arrived from WI, road-trip style, Lath and I crossed the Teton Pass to meet them in Victor. Lil found a sweet house to rent for the days they were here to visit. It was fully equipped with a grill for our brat night - it has been so long and they were SO delicious… we had them 2 nights in a row.
On Sunday, we made a day trip to the Grand Targhee Resort, took a chair lift ride up (with beers in hand), and walked back down. I got Lil to pick rocks with me, lots of them with sparkly gems! (I have a small collection waiting for you, Dad). There was a good live band with a trick bike guy that added a visual aspect to the music as he hopped around on his back tire.
If it not for the Arneson’s - I would never have experienced Victor nor the Grand Targhee Resort. Thanks A Family!
Mom and Myron came out to visit!
We explored Jackson Hole quite a bit, but also Yellowstone. I knew Yellowstone had geysers (ie. Old Faithful - which is a huge tourist attraction, but not nearly as interesting and beautiful as the rest of the “sights”), but I hadn’t a clue that it is home to some of the most unique and varied natural landscapes. I included a few photos that are a mere sample of the things we saw, which was a mere sample of what Yellowstone has to offer.
Also, I added a couple of pictures that Myron took. One where Mom and I were sampling the baked at the local farmer’s market, and another of me, in action, posting to this blog at one of my favorite hotspots in Jackson - the Jackson Hole Roasters.
Today we had a super eventful ride up to Grizzly Lake (about 7,100 ft elevation) with this weeks guests. Here are some pictures from the ride, and a small list of the “events:”
- crossing multiple rushing streams and mud bogs
- horses jumping mud bogs like mule deer
- Lucky, the dog, succeeding in the ground varment hunt, but not the bighorn sheep chase
- A small tree falling on one of the guests during the ride, and thereafter cutting off the trail for the rest of us
- Meeting (pretend?) Indians on the trail - I wish I would have gotten a picture of this one!
- Eating delicious brown bag lunches Grizzly lake-side
In case anyone wants to come and hike to Grizzle Lake, here is information on that! http://www.ohranger.com/bridger-teton-natl-forests/poi/grizzly-lake-trail
It’s time for a few quality groups shot of the whole crew! The pictures speak for themselves, so I won’t add too much in terms of commentary.
In the picture with 7 of us lined up in front of the Red Hills Ranch gate, from left to right is Sam, Lane, Laura, Natalia, Jessie, Dan, and Nate.
In future posts, I am planning on featuring a different crew member each time. Also coming up are square dancing, pig roast, and 4th of July posts (all 3 events graciously hosted by our neighbors, the Red Rock Ranch).
The 2-week interval between blog posts is due to the fact that our internet at the ranch has been very, let’s say, unavailable. I happen to be in Jackson with Mom and Myron at one of our favorite coffee shops that has internet access, so I thought I’d take advantage and post a video from the 2nd week of guests back in late July.
These guests happened to be skilled singers, and also quite creative as they took the tune “Home, Home on the Range” and customized it to include all of us workers and also the Cook family. The song was meant as a thank you to us for “a wonderful stay.” Listen carefully to the lyrics as they sing their version, called “Home, Home on the Ranch.”
My favorite lyric is “Jessie makes you eat more.”
Yesterday was the nicest day weather-wise we’ve had so far - hello Summer Solstice!
Nearly everyday during working hours, something is going on at the barn. On this particular day, the guests took their second trail ride. Vaccinations were underway. Hoof work. Training. Minor medical treatments. Beauty treatments… for the horses, of courses.
This sampling of photos shows some of the buzz around the barn on any given day. There’s Lucky, the happiest-dog-on-Earth, taking a snooze in the shade (he will come on many of the trail rides with us, so he needs lots of rest). Then there’s Sam giving the colts nasal vaccinations, Brian (current ranch manager) and Roger (old ranch manager) surveying the work, Lane training one of the young ones in the round pen, and me heading out on a trail ride on Bone Saw (Roan Straw, Baby Straw… he has a collection of names for whatever reason).
Around the barn is where I like to spend my free time. I thought I’d get a lot more reading done here, but with horses to ride, who has time to read?!