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Sneak attack by snow

June 4, 2016

We camped at Ash Camp on the McCloud River on Friday night, which is one of the places where I had cached food for the horses.  The more I can cache for them, the less we have to carry with us, lessening the burden, whether it is just Shyla or even if I have Takoda as well.  It's great to have Takoda as a pack horse, but that just automatically doubles the amount of feed that he has to carry, so ironically it isn't as if he's "free" help with the gear that otherwise Shyla would carry.  But the two of them are also really bonded, being mother and son, so they enjoy each other's company.  Unfortunately, whatever the injury was to Takoda's leg back at Chimney Creek, it apparently wasn't as healed as I thought it was; he hadn't had any swelling or lameness since that one day when my mother picked him up for me, but at the end of the day on Friday he seemed a bit stiff.  I tried to take it easy on him today, with plenty of rest stops, and he was doing fine until late in the day, when we suddenly encountered about four miles of almost constant snow fields.  The terrain was steep and we often had to climb up and down the hillsides around them to avoid the snow itself, and I know that put extra stress on Takoda's leg.  By the time we camped at Moosehead Creek, I was definitely concerned about the toll on his leg.

 

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