Monday morning is a prime time to realize our fortunate situation. We can just saddle up a couple of horses, ride out the back gate and explore the National Forest. No staff meetings, no disgruntled email from some field office somewhere in the world to get the week off to a roaring start. Besides, this is January: the interminable month of darkness and wet in Oregon, but not in Arizona. It may be cold in the mornings, but it's mostly sunny, and in the 50's by midday.
Although I have not blogged in a couple of days, we have been busy. We hiked Blacktail again, to show Cindy, did the Sunday "conditioning" hike in the Stronghold, and I have been riding a couple of times. It is winter though, and I keep hoping to come across some critter subject to blog about, but everything is pretty much shut down. Some bees are coming out, unfortunately, because they do not survive the frosty night, but other than the coyotes coming to drink regularly and the cottontails and jack rabbits, there is not a lot of wildlife. Even the bird population is down to finches (gold and house), towhees and the Say's phoebe. There are a lot of quail coming to feed, but no unusual sightings.
This being the beginning of the year, we have identified some projects around the ranch, and we'll get going on those tomorrow. We will be doing a stall remodel first: new footing, added protection from the wind, and improve the water situation. Stay tuned.