Family Pic

My BlueHost  Account Manager Justin suggested I put a photo of myself on my site so heFamily Pic GG could put a face to the voice. Megan got this shot of the whole gang. Everyone but the cats, one of which attacked her Chow puppy then ran up a tree and the other absent because of a bad case of stranger danger.  That’s me, David, on my Quarter Horse Jay and Suzy’s on her Arab Powerstroke.  Boo has positioned himself close to Suzy and Powerstroke well away from Jay who is also known as the Big Red Menace, the chaser of smaller animals.

Hay Season GGThanks to over two inches of rain in the middle of July, hay season in Wise County is still going strong.  This is my favorite way to manage hay, having someone with a big tractor and the knowhow to use it.  Sure beats hauling and stacking 70-pound square bales.

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It’s July 26th

 HappyBirthdayMLW & DarcinToday I want to wish my Father a Happy Birthday.  He’s not really a cowboy, although I know he played at being one when he was a kid.  I have a toy spur that was his as a kid that gets me thinking of kids watching Roy Rodgers and dreaming of climbing on the back of a horse to ride into a sunset.  Darcin was kind enough to let this kid at heart have a ride a while back.  Have a Happy Birthday. And of course, Happy Trails.

The Strangest Thing I’ve Seen in the Grasslands

Adu's Art GG

Adu asked me what is the strangest thing that I’ve seen in the Grasslands?  I told him it might just be this.  But, what is so strange about an artist gravitating to the Grasslands seeking inspiration for a mixed media project?  Adu, an Art Institute of Dallas instructor, Evan the videographer, his friend Ryan and the ghostwriter Christopher, were all on top of Jeep Hill today using the scenic overlook as a backdrop.  I understand the more traditional treatments of art better, but I can see how a graphic designer working in advertising can feel himself running franticly toward an Idea of Art.  I am looking forward to seeing the final creation.  I hope they can show the fragile beauty that is the Grasslands.

Adu 1

Adu 2

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The Deckers visit the Grasslands

We arrived at TADRA for a short walk with Boo.  He was getting cabin fever feeling neglected stuck in the house while we were out and about.  Not expecting to find a crowd, we were happy to see this bunch freshly arrived and ready for fun.

Decker 719131The Deckers and friends from Avery, TX here to visit the old home place and have a ride at the Grasslands entertained us.  The girls posed for pics then went out into the grass to kick up their heels.  The only boy riding the leader of the herd was having too much fun.  But, is that possible in a natural amusement park for horses and kids?

Decker 719133

Decker 719135

Decker 719134Decker 719137Decker 719136Decker 719138 After a stop at the windmill to water the horses they were off.

Happy trails.

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Hooked on the Grasslands

On our first trip to the Grasslands, we followed a map on the back of an envelope in a borrowed Suburban pulling a borrowed Darcinhorse trailer containing one borrowed horse, Chance, and Abba Darcin, a retired national champion show horse.  I’ll have more on him later because he deserves his own story.  Following the narrow gravel road we arrived at the windmill on the white trail to tack and start off on a hot day.


But, I am getting ahead of myself. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAEven though we had horse experience we still needed guidance on a ride like this.  A facilitator.  That would be Pete, the guy on the right.  You can see a more dignified photo of him with 2013 Pinto World Champion,  WA Lightning, here: Rose Gate Farm.  Living his philosophy that life is better on the back of a horse, he has led many people like us into horse ownership.  Thirteen years ago this month we took it a step further by moving next to the Grasslands, realizing a “wouldn’t it be cool” campfire conversation.

With Pete in the lead, we left out to ride mostly on the red1999OctCamping1 GG and white trails.  It’s funny to remember how big the park seemed back then now that we have experienced enough of the trails to know where we are at all times.  The same was not true back then, so now when we meet hot and tired riders we are happy to point them in the right direction.  We raced up the side of Jeep Hill, galloped though the woods, and generally enjoyed the equestrian amusement park qualities of the Grasslands.  The sight of the windmill on the white trail always makes me feel good remembering how happy I was to see it that day.  Hot, tired and sore we still had to smile because we were hooked on the Grasslands.

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Jay and the Turtle

Jay Spots

Jay spots a turtle.

Jay PursuesJay in hot pursuit.

Jay Eats

Jay gets distracted by a tasty leaf because a horse has to have priorities.

No turtles were hurt during this photo shoot.

Edit: Yes, the turtle got away.

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Now that the bones of the website are about complete, I’m off with my camera to get some content.Bluebird downstoke

Some of my favorite subjects, besides Boo, are birds.  They can be a tough target, but capturing an image of one is always exciting.  I think this bluebird is the father of some hatchlings in a box of mine located near the grasslands.  Out looking for a snack early in the morning he is working on some serious downdraft.Catch me

I also found these birds who look like young scissor-tailed flycatchers  making a lot of noise playing catch me if you can through a barbed wire fence.  This was a very lucky shot, but when you are trying to photograph birds I accept some luck.

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Happy 4th of July


A shot from a past 4th of July, but still one of my favorites.

Mountain Pink

Mountain Pink

The wildflower version of fireworks photographed on the side of jeep hill.  It seems to thrive in the hottest and driest conditions every year at this time.