Monday, September 24, 2007

The Great Escape

Last Thursday began like a normal morning, I woke up at 5:00, had a shower, checked my e-mail, had coffee and breakfast. At 6:45 I go out to feed the animals, but oddly I don’t see the horses standing by the gate as they normally do. I have the pastures sectioned off so we can rest parts of the pasture and let the grass grow. I figured they somehow got through my barriers and made their way to the upper pastures. I walk up there and they are no where in sight.

I look around and saw that they went through the only section of the fence that wasn’t electrified. OK, where were they? There is lots of green grass on the lawn, but they weren’t there. I hiked up a quarter mile to the back of the property; not there either.

I got in the car and drove down to two other farms down the road where horses live to the South; no sign of them. I drove a half mile North where there are a lot of fields that horses would just love to be in; not there either.

Then the phone rang. It was a neighbor about a mile north of us. Our horses were in her pasture. We’ve only ridden that way once and that was months ago. I have no idea why they traveled up there. I would have figured they would have gone where there were larger gatherings of horses in a direction they are familiar with, but this neighbor has only one horse and there are no other horses between here and there.

I know the ring leader was our mare. She is an escape artist. She is able to open latched gates. We have since learned to latch and chain gates. She had even figured out that I had one gate where I didn’t oppose the hinge bolts and she put her head through the bars of the gate and lifted the damn thing off the hinge and got out.

So this weekend I’m going to hot wire the remaining areas where I once thought a psychological barrier would do. Maybe I should put a GPS tracking device on them. Two dark horses roaming a dark country road at night is never a good thing.


Blogger Auntie said...

Guy - I love that photo and have been saving it for something or other for about 2 months. I am glad you got some use out of it !

6:14 AM  
Blogger Beth said...

Gotta admire that mare's ingenuity and intelligence! Aren't you just a tiny bit proud of owning such a smart horse, despite what a pain in the ass it was finding them?

8:29 AM  
Blogger Mike S said...

Glad you got them back okay. A good friend lost his Palimino last week when it got out where a tree fell on the fence and was hit and killed by a log truck. He's still pretty devastated by it:(

8:31 AM  
Blogger Syd said...

I had to retrieve one of our horses from the neighbor's place last week. Never did figure out how the fucker got out.

9:46 AM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

Auntie, You sent me that photo like back in February and I've been wanting to use it. It looks like the mare, doesn't it?

Best, she is a smart one. Probably the smartest horse we've ever had. Especially because she knows when to play dumb.

Mike, so sad. Losing a horse is a pretty emotional event. Of all the animals I've ever lost, horses are the hardest for me to get over.

Syd, the goats sprung the horse. Watch them...

11:14 AM  
Anonymous Lachlan said...

Smart brats, aren't they? Glad you got them back safe and sound.

11:14 AM  
Anonymous walter richards said...

The reason they went to that neighbor's house is simple ... they knew the single horse there was lonely, and wanted visitors.

One of my uncles once had a "tracking horse". Horse was trained and tracked better than most dogs. Uncle used to hunt cougars with it. He'd sit in the saddle and let the horse track the big cat. Of course, the odds finally caught up with them and a "cat" took the horse with it.

Last I heard, uncle was working with a SAR posse to train their horses to help track lost hikers/etc.

11:51 AM  
Blogger Judd Corizan said...


Congratulations! Your post from September 22, 2007: “Messages from Syd” has been selected as our Post of the Day on “The Rising Blogger”. It is a site that awards posts, not blogs. We will email your winning badge to post in your sidebar and all our info, if you contact us with your email address. To encourage your readers to comment on your award, it helps if you make the first comment on our post about your blog, yourself. We ask winners to nominate a post favorite of a fellow blogger. Call it “paying it forward”. Neither is a requirement. You have won this award because we truly feel you deserve it. To reach “The Rising Blogger” site:

Have a great week!
Judd Corizan
The Rising Blogger

7:24 PM  
Blogger Mom of Three said...

Once, SH and I were driving home on a road just outside of Yuba City, when, off to the side, in the dark, our headlights caught a huge horse carcass. I am so glad your horses are okay! I know once they're back in, it's good for a chuckle, but you had to have been sweating it up to that point.

1:39 AM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

Judd, if there is a pot of cash or a prize back hoe I'm interested.

Mo3, I'm surprised that they don't get hit more often. People speed right by us when we are riding. Some assholes even blow their horns.

Lach, the mare is a brat. A smart brat.

Walt, are you lying? I've never heard of that.

5:49 AM  
Blogger weese said...

my FREE dog would love your horses. she has used many of the same techniques to get out of our yard (such as lifting the gate off the hinges)

10:45 AM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

Weese, at least horses can't dig their way out, but I am surprised they don't jump their way out. My last horse was a jumper in the show ring, but she never used her skills on any of our fences.

11:06 AM  
Anonymous walter richards said...

Guy - totally serious. My uncle says that a horse's nose is as sensitive as a dog's. And I've heard other people who work with horses say the same thing.

Which made sense to me, as a horse always seems to smell new acquaintances - just like a dog will do.

1:10 PM  

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