Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Skymont, Hahira, and Gunner's hoof injury - Angie McGhee

Well I'm caught up on my other deadlines, so thought I'd give a report on my horse's cut hoof & the last two rides.

I posted about 2 weeks ago telling that I went out to ride Gunner and he had what looked like a bad hoof injury that went from the corner of the frog, straight forward as if it had been sawed for about 1" forward. It was about 1/2 way up his heel. He was totally oblivious to it, couldn't care less when I put testers on it, no sign of blood or any wire that he might have hooked it on. John posted pictures and most thought it was probably a wire injury and he'd be sore soon. Farrier came out Tuesday, thought the same, didn't seem overly concerned and put patching material on it. He didn't think a clip of any sort would help.

It was four days till Skymont and I was supposed to sponsor my daughter Josie and Joni Buttram. Dave Bennett had offered me his good horse Rocketeer as a backup, but we had a pretty complicated situation where I had to drive an hour and a half, drop the horses off at the ride site, vet in, leave them with Bill and drive 120 miles to my school's football team's playoff game, film it (it was COLD!) pick up Josie there and drive back to the ride at about 1 AM. I didn't want to leave Cade, Josie's horse without a buddy he trusted, so we decided to gamble that Gunner would stay sound. I've gotta admit. I didn't mind the 2 1/2 hour drive after the game because I knew that was the warmest we would be the rest of the weekend.

It was cold enough to have ice on the buckets Sat. morning, but perfect ride weather. I had washed our girths the day before, left them out to dry and thought they were, till we got ready to put them on Sat. and they were both frozen solid! The horses stayed sane though, and we had a great ride. The thing about Skymont that gets you is that you just don't seem to get anywhere very fast. The trail is nice, but very time consuming. There's lots of twists & turns, knee knocker trees, loose trippy rocks and just stuff that seems to slow you down more than you realize. The horse has to be careful every time he puts his foot down and it wears them out. The good part is that the trail is beautiful and the colors are at their peak, so it's still enjoyable. The scenery looks like the movie "Last of the Mohicans" and you get lots of views off the mountain with beautiful rock formations. This is my fourth time to do it (I think) and I've learned my lesson...don't fool around or you could very easily get caught out there after dark, and you have to allow for the short days.

Jody had sworn they were there to take it easy and get a completion but the truth is...and don't tell everybody this...Jody is *kinda* competitive. >g<>g<>g<>G<>
Angie McGhee

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