There were rumours that the weather was going to turn ugly this weekend, and Kelly had been complaining of a headache and sore throat for much of last week, so I really thought that our chances of getting out to the beach were pretty minimal on Saturday.
But on Friday evening, when Kelly mentioned that it had been quite a while since she had been over to see the horses, I said "Well, if you're up and ready to go by 730 tomorrow morning, I'll take you, and we'll just check it out."
Heh. I figured that she'd not be able to get up. She'd been dragging herself out of bed just in the nick of time all week, and moping around about how sick she was getting (no fever... don't know what was up with her... maybe she liked the idea of having an inhaler like mom and dad, or something)
But alas, 7:15am saw me snort out of a deep sleep to see my daughter standing over me, dressed in full 'going to where it might be cold' riding attire, and asking "Mom, I just have to find my helmet, and I think it's in your car. Can I have the keys?"
Um... so much for mom sleeping in...
And we were on the road at 7:38.
It was pretty touch-and-go at our house. Cold, and foggy, but I couldn't believe my eyes when we got to the coast.
Looking back the way we came, once we got to the ranch:
And the sky was clear over the ocean. Unbelievable!
There were quite a few people that had the same idea as us, and when we got to the front of the line, Jorge looked at Kelly and said "We've run out of horses... but can you ride Eddie? he's in the pasture, and I can go get him"
Um... can you say "Mom! It's like I'm in a dream!"...?
So the whole big gigantic group of people got on their horses, and headed slowly down the trail, and Jorge went to get Eddie for Kelly.
(the horses are all so cute now. They're growing in their shaggy winter coats, and look all fluffy)
He got Eddie all saddled up, and Kelly jumped on. "You can catch up to the group, right?" he asked, as he looked over at me and said "I'm going to have to lock the gate, and catch up with the group. There aren't enough guides."
So I snapped this quick shot as I ran back to the van, to leave the ranch before the gates closed, and Kelly headed off with one of the other ranch hands who was going out also to help with the big group.
I still managed to get to one of the check-points before her, so I could watch her trot by...
She wasn't really alone. One of the other guides was with her, also trotting to catch up with the big group.
But look at that glorious early morning sky! it really was something else.
It was high tide, and a high surf day out at the beach.
There wasn't a lot of beach left for all the horses to travel on.
Here, Kelly's caught up with the big group, and they're gathered on a small patch of high-ground on the beach, waiting to single-file it down the narrow beach to the rocky place where they turn around.
You can see the water in the lower left corner. That's higher than I've ever seen it come up the beach, although I know that with the storms, it can come all the way to the cliffs.
And here they come back up the beach...
"Mom, it was the wildest thing. YOu know how Eddie is really spooked by the water? Well, we got down to the rocks where we turn around, and he decided he was more afraid of the rocks, so he ran toward the water, and then he realized it was WATER, and he went "oh no! What to do. Dancy-dancy-dance! ZOOM!" It was the funniest thing, but I think I may have scared some of the people. But I was in control..."
Yup. A great day to ride on the beach.
And off the beach...