Monday, June 18, 2012

Happy Thirteenth Birthday to Miss Colby Carlson!

Colby turned thirteen yesterday!! Her birthday present was a weekend hiking at Sugarloaf ski mountain. We thought she could handle that as the trails are open and easy for her to navigate with her failing eyesight. She did GREAT!! Only a couple times we had to carry her when the undergrowth was thick and hard for her to see her footing. Roscoe, who we think is 13/14 years old did AMAZING!!! We thought he would be sore, his shoulder was hurting him a few weeks ago, but he has been on an NSAID and did fine! In fact, he lead the way most of the time!! I iced his shoulder after the hike several times, so hopefully that helped, but he showed no sign of lameness. Me? I am a little sore!! Good sore, but sore. I can't believe Rich headed to the gym this morning. :O Although, I guess I should. He spoke to his dad yesterday and learned that last year his dad hiked Sugarloaf. WHAT???? His dad was 78 last year. That is IMPRESSIVE!!! I mean, I was TIRED! And I think of myself as being in good shape, but there were times this weekend I felt old and slow. Geez!!!!

I think these are in pretty much chronological order. This is the very start of our hike. It gently slopes for.......not far......then the field just goes straight up. Honestly, that was the hardest part for me. Muscles not warmed up and no rocks and such for good footing and no winding, zig zag trails like most wooded mountain trails. Just straight up. I was gasping. And wondering how the heck Rich's dad did that last year at 78?????? I felt old and I am not even 50, yet. OK next month I am 50 and I should not feel like I could NEVER do this hike in 18 years, but that was how I felt. Old. Sigh. Did you read that right????? Rich's dad did this hike at 78 years old. I am IMPRESSED!!!!

Carrying Colby through the thick underbrush section.

Can you spot the tiny black spot off to the left far ahead of Rich? That is ROSCOE, leading the way on our return home. He was NUTS!! He never slowed down or looked tired. Well, until we got back to the house. LOL!!

Then he looked tired...........
Yeah, really tired.
Colby was tired. She gets tired I think because it is just plain hard for her to see and that is tiring. But, she did great!!!
They did get bit by blackflies, though, damn it.
You can't see, but she was REALLY red and sore looking. Enough that we gave her some benadryl. The next day I rubbed some eucolyptus (sp?) cream on them and that seemed to work. We also sprayed ourselves with some bug spray and I very, very lightly rubbed a little on their bellies.

Even Spur was tired. And that's pretty hard to do!! Although, after his two hour nap he was racing around the house with his wubba toy, asking us to play tug!!!

We had a GREAT time!! The weather could not have been nicer!! The dogs did amazing for such old dogs!!!

We actually have hope that maybe they are not too old for such things. They totally loved it and while I don't think Colby can navigate a wooded mountain hike and Roscoe probably couldn't handle the up and down on the rock that wooded mountain hikes demand, they both handled Sugarloaf just fine. The open trails and soft open meadows were perfect!! We flushed a mother grouse and a bunch of her babies. I kept the dog's attention while Rich flushed them. Spur briefly noticed, but even the tiny babies took flight, so they were probably in the tree tops. Colby found lots of tiny grasshoppers to hunt. Probably what the grouses were eating. The wild flowers and butterflies were picturesque and absolutely stunning, even though my camera doesn't show that. The wild dianthus, yarrow, trillium were in full bloom. The Eastern Tiger Swallow tail butterflies were EVERYWHERE!! I could never get a good photo of one, though.

We met a breed of dog at the top that I was unfamiliar with. Two Boykin spaniels. They looked like Irish water spaniels, but they had docked tails. I asked if they were related to the Irish spaniels and they said....."No, they are from South Carolina". HUH? An American breed? Yep, I looked them up. A working, hunting spaniel bred to work the waters and marshes of South Carolina. Pretty chocolate, wavy coated spaniels.

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