Thursday, June 26, 2014

Seven Brothers Lake Trip!!!

Hello loves! I know I've been slacking lately on the social media front, but honestly, I haven't really felt like being social! This place is so amazing I don't feel like spending my time buried in my phone! Although I'm not short on pictures by any means! This place so so beautiful and every ride I discover a new site worth seeing. It really is paradise.

So unlike in my past wrangler life, we get a day and a half off!!!! WHAT!?!?! I know, it's like the greatest thing is the entire world! Having one extra afternoon off a week makes the day before, the day before, the day before my day off a little easier to digest!

What have I been up to, you ask?!?! All kinds of fun stuff! I've been riding a ton, like all day everyday, even days off! This last Sunday, me and my main squeeze took the whole day and went up to Seven Brothers Lake, only to get eaten by the fog.

We get an early start and woke up to find that it had poured all night! So my day dream image of tanning by the lake and read romance novels went right out the window! I planned on packing a suit and soaking up the sun, but instead I put on two of the warmest jackets I own and my trusty OU beanie. I was freezing! We packed up the ponies, Big E and Splint, and headed out in what we thought was the right direction. One quick click of the Iphone and we had a go-to map of our general trail.

We took the morning at a nice slow walk and occasional trot, saw a moose, some deer, and a whole herd of elk! Even a little one! After about 3 hours of serious mountain climbing, half a bag of sunflower seeds, and shedding a few layers, we finally made it above the tree line. And let me tell you, the view was to die for.

From the ranch we can see the Bighorn Mountains, but never this close. I felt like I could reach out and touch them!

Finally about half an hour later we made it to the first brother, lake, that is! We traveled a little further and ran into some serious snow, decided to head back and fish the first lake. Then the fog rolled in...*insert dramatic music here*

So my plan for the day was to indulge in a romance novel and tan, it was cold and dark, so I indulged in a nap on a rock by the lake and a photography session. I packed my Sony and snapped away. While Prince Charming with a southern accent was catching pike and no luck, I was playing with my light settings. Some of them actually turned out pretty creepy.

So after about an hour of minimal fishing luck, we ate a quick snack, packed up the ponies and headed homeward bound! Although we didn't catch that many fish and we felt like we had been cast in the movie The Mist without knowing, the day was amazing. If anything had to go wrong I'm glad it was the weather! I had so much fun and got some really cool pictures.

Other than my exciting adventure to the lake, life has been non stop adventure up here. The food never changes, the activities stay as exciting as ever, and I still love everything about this place. There have been a few hiccups (stay tuned for those), but I could not be happier.

My favorite part about this place, is getting to spend everyday with the love of my life. I know, I know, feel free to gag! We're gross! But really, after spending the last 9 months 1,000 miles apart it's nice to finally get to see him everyday. I still love working with him, because I only have to see him for the 3 hours in the morning and at meal times. Kidding! I love that we have the same job and getting to go on this adventure with him. It's really like the best thing a girl could ask for....

So I hope you all are enjoying your summers and spending time with your favorite people!

Just remember that adventure is out there, you just have to look for it. 

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Welcome to Paradise!

So it's been officially one week and two days since I arrived in Paradise...Guest Ranch that is.

If you keep up with my life you know that I just recently graduated college and decided that I didn't want to be an adult, so much like the past few summers, I decided to spend my summer sitting in the saddling listening to my own voice all day long. It's a rough life out here, I know.

So I packed up my life once more and moved with my ever adventurous boyfriend to Buffalo, WY to work on a guest ranch. After a few hiccups and one pit stop we finally made it. And Oh My Lord is this place amazing. It is so much more beautiful than Colorado! There is never a ride where I don't come over the top of the mountain and literally feel my breath leave my lungs. The views are beyond compare. There's something about snow capped mountains and loping through a field of wildflowers on the top of a mesa really spells out paradise for me.

Between learning how to fly fish and rope, teaching children team penning and pole bending, the last week has been no stop excitement and I can't wait for Sunday. The boyfriend and I are going on a pack trip to Seven Brothers lakes to fish all day. Check back in next week to hear all about it. But first...

Let me tell you a little more about what it's like to live at Paradise Guest Ranch. We own around 200 horses and we saddle about 50 a day, rough stuff. I get 5 horses that I can ride any day I want all summer, they're all mine, muahhhhhhh. But really, it's so nice! We ride twice a day and four times a week guests have to option to work in the arena at team penning, barrel racing, or pole bending. Exciting stuff. After each ride, he guests unsaddle their horses and head off to enjoy their vaca. Another part of being a wrangler is socializing with the guests throughout the day and into the night. Each night there is a different activity, we are required to attend three events throughout the week. I've picked swing dance Tuesdays, chuck wagon Fridays, and square dance Saturday. Every week is a new set of guests and new adventures. The trails are beautiful, the food is spectacular and I swear they're gonna have to roll me out of here by September, because I never miss dessert. My day in a nutshell...

Day in the life of a wrangler at Paradise:
6:30am: Wake up
7am: Eat gourmet breakfast
8am: Have wrangler horse saddled and get ready for Barn call
9:30am: Load rides and head out on the trail
12:15pm: Head to lunch
1:40pm: Head back to barn and get ready to re-saddle for afternoon rides
3:00pm: Load rides and head out for afternoon ride
4:30pm: Unsaddle and clean barn
6:45pm: Head to Saloon to socialize and wait for dinner
8:30pm: Nightly activity or head to bed

Next Day: Repeat
Day(s) off: Thursday afternoons and Sundays
Earliest Wake up: 6:15am (twice a week)

Life out here is a lot different than Sombrero, but I love it so much more. Everyone here is amazing and awesome, I don't think I'll take away the life long friendships, lifeboats, and memories that I did from Sombrero, but I think this will be a summer worth documenting.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Road Trippin' like a Boss...

Is that still a thing? Well even if it isn't we did it!

17 hours, 3 days, 2 people, 1 epic road trip! 

Start: Tecumseh, OK
Pit Stop: Estes Park, CO
Finish: Buffalo, WY

So for those of you that don't know me or haven't read that All about me section you don't know that my life is kind of great. 

After graduating college I decided I don't want to be an adult quite yet, and seeing the world just sounds like so much more fun. And I happen to be the luckiest girl in the world cause not only do I get to spend my summer in Paradise literally, but I get to do it with my best friend!

Short back story on me and Prince Charming with a southern accent: We met last summer at a little place called Sombrero Ranches, after some perfect dates and a couple touristy adventures, I was sold! Head over heels, love of my life forever, sold. And we've been together ever since. Across 1,000 miles, two time zones, and hectic lives, we're finally together ready for a lifetime of adventure.

Well we started our little road trip in the pouring rain! Then we finally hit the ever so exciting state of Kansas and the weather was a much improved overcast and gloomy, to go with all the rolling mounds...then we finally hit Colorado. And those mountains...we're covered in clouds and it was pouring. Well after 12 hours we finally made it to Estes Park, Colorado. My favorite place in the world.

We checked into our hotel and headed to the greatest resturant EVER. Smokin' Dave's Taphouse and BBQ!! So after eating our body weight in BBQ we headed back to the hotel for some serious shut eye. 

We woke up early and had breakfast by the river. Then headed to the ranch to pick up our love child, Amanda! After a short visit to Glacier, we headed over to Moraine to see the second love of my life, Edgar Allen Pony. We took a quick ride to try some new ponies and then we headed back to town for lunch. One more trip to Dave's and the perfect end to a perfect day.

Then it was another early start and we were on our way to Buffalo. 

And of course no road trip is ever perfect...but that's where the adventure part comes in. So about 3 hours into our 6 hour drive, the whole back end of the pick up decides it needs a forever breather. A quick 3 hour emergency mechanic delay and we're back on our way again.

So after a long few days of fun, sun, and unexpected surprises, were finally in our new summer home!!!

Tuesday, June 3, 2014 the worst!

But really though...

I'm kidding, I don't hate Arizona...completely! Just like 5 months out of the year I feel as if my skin is melting off my body, but you know you get used to it! And if you are a true Arizonaian, you love it...weird people, those ones. But since this has been my home for the last 15 or so years I decided to write an entire post about this great state! So here are my 5 things every Arizona native has heard, 5 things I hate, and 5 things I'll miss!

Top 5 things every Arizona Native has been told:
1| Wow, it's so hot there! How do you survive?!?!
2| But it's a dry heat, can't be too bad.
3| You must have really great Mexican food there!!!
4| Must be so nice to have mild winters.
5} You must have hiked the Grand Canyon then

5 things I hate about living in Arizona:
1| It's real hot
2| Never get a white Christmas
3| Scorpions and Sun Devils...gross.
4| Snow Birds
5| It's hot.

Top 5 Things I will miss about living in Arizona:
1| We don't believe in daylight savings (don't really understand the all)
2| It's a dry heat
3| Good Mexican Food and In and Out Burger (I love food)
4| My fat dog, Rocky
5| The whole kit-kat-kabottle (my family) lives in this desert wasteland

So there are some positives about the great state of Arizona, the last land state to join the union. We are know for our endless desert and illegal immigrants, but this state has a lot more to offer, like 115 degree summers. So if your planning a vacation to my humble abode, only come from September to January, after that you're on your own. Visit the small towns with lots of character and avoid Snottsdale, it's nothing special. Hike the Grand Canyon and stay as far north as you can, they're weather is great. If you ever visit Tucson, hide your valuables. I'm sure every state has a little something to offer and a little something that should be kept in the basement away from the public eye. But I am sad to say goodbye to all the little things that make Arizona so different. I will miss my desert rat life, but I am so ready for another mountain adventure!!!

Bring it on Summer!

They always say life is full of surprises and mine is no different. So I know I promised a blog about a search for the perfect tan and beach workouts, but life doesn't always go as promised.

So for the first time in my life summer isn't just a gap between school years..the rest of my life is full of summer. The weather may change, but I'm not going back to school any time soon. Sorry to disappoint the adults...

Well since school's out for summer and I'm going to pretend I'm still a kid and get a summer job. Like I said before, my life is full of surprises and this summer is not short on them by any means. Two weeks ago I thought that I was packing up the car for sun, sand, and waiting tables, but all that has changed... Now I'm Wyoming bound for a summer job on a guest ranch.

So summer three in the saddle and I can't wait! Life really does make more sense in the saddle and I'm excited to spend my whole summer in one. I am headed to Paradise Guest Ranch in nowhere Buffalo, WY and Prince Charming with a southern accent is coming with. Unfortunately, I have leave my main squeeze, Rocky, behind! I know!!! Let's all take a moment!

Despite having to leave the whole fam bam and my main squeeze behind, I am so ready for the all the mountains, the horses, and the fresh air. The past two summers in Estes have been a little slice of heaven and I'm thinking this summer is going to be just as epic.

But despite all that, it's hard to say goodbye. Simple as that, it's never easy, no matter what people say. It's always hard to say goodbye to what's comfortable and easy and move on to the next place. Some of us are just better at it than others. I know that I have an excessive sense of wanderlust and can't wait to see what this world has to offer, but this time it's gonna be hard to leave.

I'm spending my last full day in Arizona enjoying the one thing that I won't be able to get really anywhere else. In and Out Burger...for you non-west coasters, In and Out is heaven in a restaurant, if you know what to order. Animal Fries are the addiction of the century for all those who love to break diets, don't care about busting a zipper, or those who really just enjoy a good set of french fries. And I couldn't have picked a better person to enjoy lunch with than Rosa, my dance partner in whine!!

So it's off to the high country for this ex-College Cowgirl! Come back in a few days to hear about all the things I will and will not miss about Arizona!