Horses Bareback on the Beach!

Trip Start Jul 10, 2009
Trip End Aug 21, 2009

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Flag of United States  , California
Thursday, August 6, 2009

Headed to Cape Blanco this morning to eat breakfast at the beach and luckily ended up getting there at low tide, which is good tidepooling time.  It is really tricky to figure out the tides here, and tidepooling (and sometimes your life!) depends on it.  There are high tides, low tides, low, low tides, and minus tides, and each of these times change daily at every location.  Stopped at Port Orford to learn about Battle Rock (another example of settlers coming in and stealing the land from the local Native Americans) and happened to notice a sign for horsebacking riding on the beach.  Phoned and got us set up to ride at Gold Beach, a bit further down the coast.  Paul R. is a sort of horse whisperer and the money raised through the horses goes to his Christian ministry.  There were only 3 horses available so the kids and mom were the lucky riders.  We knew it was a good sign when we pulled up and saw that he had a Siberian Husky with blue eyes (named Blue).  We spent almost 3 hours with Paul, hearing about his life, getting to know the horses, and riding on the beach.  We all rode bareback for the first time ever!  It was actually more comfortable than a saddle, but a bit tricky to get used to hanging on.  We had only a rope around the horses as reins and got on by standing on Paul's leg.  It was all going so well until one of the horses stepped on poor Calder's foot!  I thought it was emergency room time for sure, but he was a trooper and got on and rode after the pain subsided.  SInce we had missed lunch with the extended horse time we splurged on a fish and chips and homemade pie "lupper" (that's a combo of lunch and supper that we have resorted to at times on this voyage) at a cool local restaurant called the Port Hole, right at the port of Gold Beach where the Rogue River hits the Pacific.  The Rogue is a wild and scenic river where the mail is delivered in mail boats as there is not road access to all addresses up the river.  Hit Samuel Boardman State Park for a crazy steep hike at Indian Sands and a great beach tidepool walk at Whale Rock as the sun was beginning to set on our last moments in Oregon.  Crossed the border into California and got the tent set up before dark!
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