3/2/17 Today seemed like a promising day for kitty chasing. Yesterday, Marshall found a track that we were hoping to use to get the doglets out this morning. We let Missy outside to do her doggy duty before loading in the truck, and she found a stray mozzarella stick in the driveway. She grabbed it and ran full tilt across the parking lot. She proceeds to bury it in a snow bank, of all places, then comes trotting back to the truck like nothing even happened. Clearly she is not a normal dog, and she must be on some new fad diet and is going dairy and/or gluten free.
Anyways, the boys managed to stuff five pups into the dog box, (Prune had to stay home because he is still recovering from “brain surgery”.) We dropped the kidlet off at school, and headed up the mountain.
Good ol’ windy Wyoming didn’t let us down. The wind blew so much since yesterday that the tracks were completely covered when we got there this morning. But! Due to the fact that Marshall is smarter than most men, he had scouted the track pretty well yesterday. He was able to follow it up the mountain and around some cliffs before it went out of sight. We thought we would walk the dogs up to the base of the cliffs and see if any of the tracks were still usable.
Now, it would be nice if at some point in my life, I felt like all this horseback riding and mountain climbing were doing me any good. I feel like I should be fit by now, but walking uphill in the snow is just the pits, any way you look at it. I don’t care who you are. Five minutes in, I was panting and wishing we would teach the dogs something actually useful, like pulling me in a sled. Wouldn’t that be fantastic?! Just cruising along, going through rough terrain, chillin’ behind the dogs, drinking hot cocoa and relaxing. I’m sure there’s a bit more to it than that, but that’s not the point. Will be purchasing a dogsled at next opportunity.
What was I saying? Dog sledding… being fat… oh yes! Fat. I also had 200 layers of clothing on, including some very non-breathable waterproof pants. So yes, at this point, I had swamp ass, or swass, as I like to call it. I stripped most of my layers and left them on a rock to pick up later. The dogs must have been feeling the need to unload a bit too, because I swear every single one of them had to poop right in the middle of the daggum trail.
So that was nice.
We made it to where we had to leave the trail and go straight up the hillside to the cliffs. One look at that incline, and I decided I would wait at the bottom and let Marshall go see if there were any tracks left. So Marshall and the doglets started the climb, and I sat on a rock and watched. They only made it up about 20 feet and had to stop to rest. This is where I confirmed that I had indeed made the smarter choice.
They made their way about half way up, and all the pups started struggling. Missy just wasn’t in the mood, Sissy can’t do anything without Missy leading the way, and the three puppies (who are now all of 4 months old) were buried under the snow. They couldn’t even walk, but were having to leap up and out of the snow each step. Of course there were all these boulders buried in the snow too, making it even harder on them. The doglets thought it was just impossible.
Remember how Todd likes to bark when he thinks he is stuck? Soooo of course, he starts barking up a storm, which makes Tucker start barking, which makes Sissy come back down the mountain to see what all the fuss is about. At this point, Marshall is up above them and doesn’t want to come down to help them; he’s yelling at them to stop barking and trying to get them to climb up the mountain. Todd and Tucker won’t shut up. All of the dogs are clambering around in circles and looking down the mountain at me, and thinking maybe they should just come back down and see what I’m doing. It was chaos.
So, like any responsible puppy mommy, I sucked it up and hiked up to the puppies to help them. On my way up, I found a nice twig of sagebrush to use as a puppy-convincer. Upon my arrival, Tucker really started barking, as though he needed to tell me off for not rescuing them sooner. So I brandished the twig at him, thinking he might start climbing. Oh no. Now he’s confused. (“What’s that thing you’re waving at me, Mom?”) The puppies never believe any of my threats. They know I’m really only good for cuddles and treats.
Anyways, with a little convincing, all of them made it to the top. Meanwhile, I’m still halfway down the mountain, crawling to the top. Not kidding. There was no way to balance on the boulders and climb through that deep of snow without balancing on my hands too.
Long story short! Mountain climbing sucks, but we made it. We didn’t find any fresh tracks. Our dogs think we are crazy. (Which we are.) We took photographic evidence of the day, AND COULD THEY BE ANY CUTER?!
Not a bad way to spend the morning.