Monthly Archives: May 2014

May 2014

DSC01161The Merry Month of May has seen it’s last Teamdonk drive and it was a good one!  Forty-six degrees at hitch time and 65 degrees upon our return.  The breeze was light and on the cool side.  The sky was almost clear except for a few high clouds and one very lost little thunderhead.  I spotted two deer, the boys I think missed them both!  

We drove into Day Canyon and coming out on the steeper side we stopped for a nice chat with the Fed EX guy.  He had never passed us before and didn’t know he did not need to stop.  What a nice gentleman!  We had several cars pass us both directions.  On the way home we pulled off to let the weed sprayer go past, Galahad was really upset he had to drive on the wrong side of the road because of the smelly wet spray, who would have thought it mattered to him but it did!

Trotting was especially fun today.  Our first was a slow jog at just six mph when we were just starting out on our warm up.  The second was on more of a downhill slope and that was 7 mph, the third one was trotting up hill and they were playing CDE (Combined Driving Events) and pushed the speed to 8 mph, just because they could!

The boys are still sporting lots of long heavy hair, Luc is shedding out nicely but he is the only one.  So they are still in conditioning mode but at 3.1 mph no one wanted to slow down this morning!

Here are our May Stats:

Total of 5 drives for Luc and Galahad

11 hours and 43 minutes

26.55 miles

We are only 3.02 miles away from our 1,000 Logged Miles Goal… next drive for sure!  I think there should be some fireworks involved!

Todays short video is of the creek in the bottom of Day Canyon and all it’s happy sounds.  Luc and Galahad were in a hurry to get home so it’s just a quickie, Luc was telling me….“Really…really, do we have to stop? …Let’s go….  Okay we’re going!”

 

 

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Take Two..

Cottonwood Butte in the distance.  Photo was taken from Longhaul Road looking through Day Canyon with a telephoto Landscape setting.  That Mountain is about 20 miles from here!

Cottonwood Butte in the distance. Photo was taken from Longhaul Road looking through Day Canyon on a telephoto Landscape setting on a cloudy day. That Mountain is about 20 miles from here! Click to make the photo screen size.

Here is another short video clip, completely uncut, from our May 27th drive.  Enjoy!

The Canola is in Full Bloom

Fall Canola

Teamdonk is taking a rest break at the entrance to a Fall Canola field in full bloom  Click on the photo to bring it up to full size. The fall canola fields have exploded into brilliant yellow and they’re full of happy hard working little honey bees!

A storm is moving in so it was a hurry up and go morning, the boys and I needed a drive before work tomorrow!  It was only in the forty’s when we hitched, the low fifty’s when we were driving and just barely into the sixty’s at noon, but we did it!

I fixed Galahad’s floppy traces by tightening them up one notch and loosening his breast strap that goes back to the quarter straps.  I think Luc’s needs lengthened next, put on a few pounds there boys?

Today’s video is at the half way point of our drive and with a few stills thrown in.  The longer clip we took today you will get to see later.  For now you can enjoy this mornings drive at:

http://youtu.be/EA47lCEa6Wk

Galahad and Luc had a scare that almost resulted in a run for your life!  Two dogs were running and playing along a fence line coming towards us.  Both the boys were ready to bolt when the dogs were suddenly called to come by their owner.  Thank goodness, Galahad got real big real quick and he was ready to flee!  Even Luc said, “I’m right there beside you, Galahad, this looks bad!”

Today’s stats:  Our first trot was a nice jog at 7.1 miles per hour, the one in this film clip was 7.8 mph, you will notice it was all uphill and they wanted to keep on going so I let them!  We were out for two hours and our drive ended right at 5 miles.  Moving average was 2.3 miles per hour and our overall average was at 3 mph.  This was our third drive of the year, we are two drives away from marking 1,000 logged driving miles with the Mammoth Donkeys known as Teamdonk!

Getting Ready!

DSC01668

This is my view from inside the tractor cab.  What you see is the log deck in the background that Jim cut next winter’s firewood from earlier in the day.  He is stacking the splitter that I operate from the tractor.  Click on the photo to make it full size.

It’s never to early to think about Ole’ Man Winter!  Memorial Day was our first chance to get a start on next winter’s heating fuel.  I was able to run the splitter and the video camera at the same time so you could see how smoothly this operation goes.

It was good day, we got a healthy cord of wood neatly stacked in the shed!  More time and cooler temperatures will get this job done before the snow flies again, five more cords of wood to go!

Enchanting Emerald Green

Log us in for another Terrific Teamdonk #1 Drive.  Good going Luc and Galahad!

Everyone is here you just have to look hard to find them

Click on the photo to bring it up to full size.

The donkey boys are now locked in the back pasture for 10 days to rest the front pasture that was sprayed last evening with weed killer.  When I went to get them this morning it didn’t take them long to jump the creek and make their way thru the belly deep grass to get their halters on so we could go!  I sure hope no one is temped to overeat when I’m not looking!

We drove over six miles to enjoy a short visit with two different neighbors and we met another neighbor along the way giving us a chance to catch up with the latest neighborhood news.  We passed the dreaded cows that like to play chase causing a teamdonk runaway.  This time our timing was perfect, score two points for the donkeys as we successfully passed them going both directions without any excitement from Luc and Galahad or the cows and bottle-fed calves.

The prairie is blanketed in enchanting emerald green fall wheat fields with patches of bright yellow canola.  There is still snow on the mountain peaks and today it all happened under brilliant blue skies.  The temperature made it into the 70s  during our drive with a light breeze that had a cooling effect on my exposed skin.  I only sunburnt where I forgot to add sunscreen, imagine that… I will remember the tops of my legs next time out!

We are fifteen miles away from logging one thousand, it’s getting closer by the drive!  The rains are coming for a visit tomorrow so we’ll wait for the sunshine and go again.

 

May is Happy Birthday Month

Happy Birthday to Marshall who turns 16 May 20th,  Luc who turns 13 May 29th and to Merlin who is now 8 years old as of May 8th.

Galahad you get to wait until September 5th to turn 11 years old.

Here are a few other fun Teamdonk facts.

RMS Lippyluver Luc has been a resident of Idaho for 11 1/2 years, he was formerly of Montana.  He has been driving now for ten years.  Luc has earned his Supreme Driving Award and 8 Participation awards from ADMS.

Luc and Galahad participating in the 100th Annual Idaho's Oldest Rodeo Celebration.  Border Days in Grangeville, Idaho

Luc and Galahad participating in the 100th Annual Idaho’s Oldest Rodeo Celebration. Border Days in Grangeville, Idaho

OK Sir Galahad, who is Luc’s team mate as Teamdonk #1 has been driving for five years with Luc and Merlin and as a single.  Galahad has been here for seven years, Washington State was his home before Idaho.  Galahad has his ADMS Versatility Hall of Fame Award also.

RMS Magical Merlin

RMS Magical Merlin, pictured above, turned 8 years old on May 8th.  He and Luc share a Rocky Mountain Songbirds heritage.  Merlin has been driving for 3 1/2 years.  He has been in Idaho for 5 years.  Merlin initiated Teamdonk #2 as a way to tell the two teams apart.  Merlin and Marshall will be my M ‘n M Team.  Marshall and Merlin should make a great driving team.

Marshall on this side

ALERRT’S Montana Marshall turns 16 years old as of May 20th.  He has been a driving donkey on and off for many years in a team.  He has pulled farm implements and driven the open roads with Robert and Nelda Auge.  It has been awhile since Marshall has been hitched, this picture was dated 2009.  His first Teamdonk hitch is  happening here soon.

Click on the photos to enlarge them.  Happy Birthday Teamdonk boys Marshal, Luc and Merlin!

Just a little more….

This is a short clip left over from yesterday’s drive with a couple of photos thrown in, just for fun.

http://youtu.be/e31F0U83UJw

We drove the 5 mile loop in 2 hours and 15 minutes on our second drive!  Galahad and I watched a deer leaping through the canola while the team was catching their breath.  Luc was  napping, I think!

With their heavy hair coats and just coming out of winter  they get to move at a slower pace with more rest breaks.  These drives make them warm and a little sweaty, once in shape I can’t hardly make them break a sweat!  They  usually enjoy a good roll when we get back for our drive.

Their hooves are looking good and fortunately they are not picking up a lot of tiny rocks but they still getting a good cleaning after each drive just in case.

Now it is Marshall’s turn to get some ground driving in before he gets hitched with Luc.  He is really wanting to go and Luc can show him the way.  Watch for Marshal’s first Teamdonk drive coming to a computer near you soon!

May 16th Second drive of the season

Today you get to ride along on this almost 9 minute video, should you choose.  It was a fun one.

http://youtu.be/Ck4SsCg6mrI 

The one thing I missed on film was Galahad’s spook in place, it was a good one with a bird flying up next to him out of the tall grass.  Galahad froze  for quite a while until he was ready to go again. This is so much better than a run away!

May 15th, First Teamdonk Drive of 2014

It’s all good!  We are 21 days ahead of last year’s first drive, that works for me!

Right now there is harness grime under my perfectly groomed fingernails.  I’ve got helmet head and  my favorite driving shorts and top are ready for the washer.  Yep, it is all good.

Luc and Galahad are now four miles closer to our thousand mile goal, it’s not a lot but it is a start.  We were out for over 2 hours with temperatures starting out in the low 50’s and it was perfect!

To top it off here is a short video of a small part of today’s drive! The GoPro is once again working!  Yes sir-ee it is all good!

Teamdonk Update

Teamdonk May 14th update… Marshall has decided to shed using the deadlock method, that was a new one on me! Hair clumped and twisted together, very interesting!  But the fall out is happening… his hair coat this winter was about two inches long! The other three are shedding in their normal patterns which is good.  We are still getting into the freezing temperatures at night so I am not pushing it.

Marshall is lovin’ this green grass but is restricted to the front pasture as are all the others so I can keep close eye on them. The farrier was out Tuesday the 13th and while I was waiting for him I harnessed up Marshall and planned to take him for a ground drive down the driveway.

Everyone was neatly trimmed even Merlin was able to stand long enough on his abscessed hoof to get the other front done.  The hoof wall is still packing some heat so it has not blown out completely.  It is soft above the back of the hoof so that is where I have it packed with Ichammol and bandaged.  He is in less pain and getting around much better.  Luc had an old puncture wound in his hoof but I think we will get away without an abscess on that one!

My first ground drive with Marshall was in Kanab, Utah last November..

Ground driving Marshall

When the farrier left it was Marshall’s turn to go for a ground drive this time in full Teamdonk harness. Right at the start Galahad went crazy… running, bucking and braying! It totally upset Marshall as he did not know what the heck was going on so Marshall and I just made a short fast driveway loop. Later as I was getting ready for our first drive of the year I realized I had Galahad’s harness on Marshall, maybe that is what Galahad was trying to tell me! “He’s wearing MY harness… you crazy woman!”   I think it had to be the green eyed monster that wants to go driving that possessed Galahad into a frenzied craziness!

Luc and Galahad drive Thursday!  The harness is out and the plan is in place!  I am without my normal hitching and unhitching areas so we will get ready to go down by the car carrier and unhitch at the donkey trailer, then have a nice stroll back down the hill to the pasture.  Let’s do it!

Luc and Marshall will drive together later this month while Merlin is healing but I am going to pen up Galahad, who is going to be very unhappy and vocal I’m sure!