Bill and Juanita, owners of Allenspark Lodge B&B, are living their dream...

running a successful business and riding as often as possible.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Gifts for us

We had some guests that have sent us several rubber duckies for our hot tub.  Cowboy ducks, surfer dude ducks, etc.  We just got a reindeer duck just before Christmas in the mail.  Upon opening the package, our 17 month old granddaughter latched on to it and ran off.  Fortunately, I've got better than 50 years experience and 150 pounds on her, so I got it wrested away from her.  It was a near thing. 

I also collect gargoyles, and a guest/friend found a "Horsegoyle" for our collection.  Cool.

 Thanks Darlene & Randy and Kai & Mike!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas Eve

It's getting late on Christmas eve.  We've just come home from a neighborhood potluck and program at the Fawn Brook Inn.  It was a refreshing way to spend an evening of waiting:  our Phoenix son and family are headed our way and still have about three hours drive time before they get here.  It's a 15 hour drive and they got kind of a late start, so we all have bets on when they will arrive.  It's going to be a real weather-shock for them because right now it's 9 degrees outside and windy blasts are blowing our foot of snow all over.    I would bet our horses are standing in the trees on the mountain, shielded from the wind and watching over their landscape in the bright moonlight - maybe checking Santa's progress.

Our other son is on his way home from a party at his grandma's house and both girls and their families will be here tomorrow.  It's truly a Hallmark Christmas.  We are so fortunate to be able to have all the kids and grandkids at the Lodge for Christmas this year.

Merry Christmas and blessings to all!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Just looking...

Yesterday we got a call from Ida saying she was in the process of moving our horses...back to the mountain.  Yeah, we really prefer they be on the ranch's mountain pasture.  We feel it keeps them more in their natural state,keeping their instincts better honed and better on their feet.  They have naturally very hard hooves, which tend to grow too fast and get soft when kept on grassy fields.

Today, we decided to hike up to see if they had settled in OK, pretending they really needed us.  It was a great day for a hike and on the way, we saw the Rocky Mt. Bighorn Sheep on the road.  What a great sight, and they posed for pictures....

A few miles further down the road, we parked by the bridge, put on hiking boots and gators, and headed up the long trail to the back side of the horses' favorite mountain.  We know most of their grazing spots from the previous years, so we thought we could just head to the farthest one and work our way back.  Right!  After hiking uphill for an hour, we got to the meadow; lots of hoof prints, no horses.  So...this is where they spent last night.  A good sign.  We scout around and find some fresh sign (poop) in another pasture - not very old.  No horses.  We were running out of time, but did some more quick scouting, looking for tracks leading away from these pastures.  Nothing.  We finally headed back to the car, going the way we knew the horses would have come up from the road.  Sure enough, we eventually find some tracks from the previous day and nearing the end of our trail we found some obvious signs of play:  snow pegasus (horse version of snow angels)!  We never saw the horses, but we know they are doing well!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Las Vegas WNFR - We have arrived!

After much planning (since last July) the time has come to head for Las Vegas, NV for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo.  This is the culmination of all the rough rides the rodeo cowboys have endured over the year; only the top 15 in each PRCA event are invited to participate.  It is the ultimate of fast and furious for any rodeo followers.  They can go through the seven events in two hours without missing a beat:  bronc riding (horses), steer wrestling, team roping, tie-down roping, saddle bronc riding, barrel racing, and bull riding.  Not only are the cowboys the year-round best, so are the animals.

We left early Tues. Dec. 1, giving ourselves two days for the drive, with plans of enjoying some national parks along the way (another post), arriving in Las Vegas on Wed. at our destination, the Excaliber Hotel.

We just had time to change clothes for the night's performance of The Tournament of Kings, a dinner show Renaissance style.  The "tournament" is a jousting competition among 6 kings plus a dragon - we were in the dragon section.  Can't say much for the food, but the performance was a lot of fun; we had front row seats so we got to wear some of the arena dirt thrown up by the horse's hooves as they carried their respective jousters to victory.  The horses were obviously well cared for and you could witness close-up the bond between them and their riders.  It made it a joy to watch.  Later we headed to Fremont St. for a hoedown, which turned out to be not very western and we didn't stay long-or maybe we were just too tired after driving 300 miles, sitting through the show and thinking about dancing!

The next day the rodeos started:  each evening for 10 days.  We waited in line for two hours to get tickets, but were fortunate enough the get tickets for all 5 days we planned on being there.
After getting our tickets we picked up Shawntel from the airport; she had to be there for a work event and couldn't even go to any rodeos - booo!  We did get to hang out with her at the Cowboy Christmas shopping extravaganza for a short time.

Friday, we went to South Point for the cowboy X-Games, which included Cowboy Mounted Shooting competitions and bull-fighting competitions (no longer "clowns"), then rodeo time again.

You can see all the glitz in the background.  We had a great time at the rodeos and I refused to attempt pictures.  It is so fast paced, you just miss too much.

On Sat. and Sun. we went to the rough stock sales at South Point.  It's like being at a different rodeo all day long.  It's an auction where the stock contractors sell off their breeding or bucking stock to other contractors or rodeos, such as college level or high school level competitors.  These bulls and horses can sell for as high as $50,000 each.  Talk about well -cared for livestock!  The riders are cowboys attempting to get enough points to qualify for the PRCA, so they can compete in the big rodeos all across the country.  It's a whole lot of fun to watch.

I couldn't resist this picture of a few of the eight horses that make up the Priefert hitch.  They are magnificent in their size and temperament.  These guys are only 4 and 7 yrs. old; their driver actually rode them roman style as a 6-up during one of the rodeo performances.

All in all, we had a grand time, enjoyed some friends there, and ran ourselves to death as usual.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Truck Ad Responses

 The craigslist ad for my truck a couple weeks ago has gotten a lot of responses.  Here are a few...

Call us if we can help. Outstanding ad, unfortunately we hear that same story every day. If the Ford dealers would take care of their customers we wouldn’t have any business. I forwarded it on to a bunch of folks. If we can ever be of help please let us know.

I'm from BC and got one just like it.
It was broke done 8 months last time.

This made it onto a local Phx, Az forum. Great ad thanks for the humor.

LMFAO!!!  I have a very good friend that went through the EXACT same sh*t with a truck just like that...only his was a 450. Same engine. He ended up just cleaning all his sh*t out of it, driving it to the nearest ford dealer and leaving it with all the keys IN it. Then when Ford credit started calling he just told them where they could find it. LMFAO!

Sorry, I feel your pain. I tell everyone to skip buying anything with a 6.0 in it, while International and Ford sue each other over who is wrong.
PS: Someone posted this on a Ford board.

sounds like you like that truck haha youll NEVER sell it with an ad like that, i admire your honesty bugt youll never get 32 for it expecially the mods you have done and they way you decrivbed the motor, about to blow up is she?
well good luck!

So that's 32,000.00 for the flat-bed trailer. and the truck for free! sorry I don't want the truck, but after reading your ad I couldn't stop laughing. I love this ad and have E-Mailed to a few of my friends. sorry you bought a ford. have a better day Jeff

Sounds Great, I'll take it. Will you take a 3rd party overseas check post dated for 12/20/2012 ?
According to the Mayan calendar, that should be just about right...

Does that truck have the 6.0 engine?????
Have a good time with that truck-----you need to keep advertising it.      Needs to be behind a tow truck.   Again and Again

Say, there's an idea.
Maybe rather than a tow truck, we could hitch a team up to it...

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Advice from a Westerner

  We just got back from the first half of the Rodeo National Finals held in Las Vegas.  Always quite the show.  You see more cowboys compete in 2 hours than in most 2 day events elsewhere.  But Vegas is a ... well... "different" kind of town.  It brings right up into your face the assorted cultures we have here in the USA.

North America was heavily colonized by European criminals and malcontents, and the west was populated by the ones that STILL weren't happy.  We have a different way of seeing things.  As lodge owners, we get to meet a lot of folks from all over the US and sometimes I offer them some advice for dealing with the natives on this side of the Mississippi, some of it original and some shamelessly stolen.

Western advice, top 25

25. Pull your pants up. You look like an idiot.
24. Unless you are wearing a catcher's mask, the bill goes in front.
23. Buddy, it's a gravel road.   No matter how slow you drive, you're gonna get dust on your car.
22. They are cattle. That's why they smell like cattle. They smell like money to us. Get over it.
21. It's OK to make eye contact with people as you walk down the street.  In fact, it's kind of expected.
20. Lots of people out west wave.. It's called being friendly. Weird, huh?
19. Colorado just passed a law making it illegal to "text" while you are driving. Duh.
18. We eat beef, pork, poultry, trout, salmon, deer and elk. Sushi and caviar are available at the bait shop.
17. The 'Opener' refers to the first day of deer season. It's a religious holiday held the closest Saturday to the first of November.
16. We open doors for women. That's applied to all women, regardless of age.
15. Ladies, all you need, at least here in Colorado, is SPF 15 and a chap-stick.  Makeup is only used if you are getting married or buried.
14. Gentlemen, a bola (string) tie will suffice for more formal occasions.  A regular "neck tie" may have people thinking you are a lawyer or a used car salesman.  Suits are for getting married or buried in.
13. Often, there's no 'vegetarian special' on the menu. Order the Chef's Salad and pick off the 1/2 pound of ham and turkey.
12. When we fill out a table, there are usually three main dishes: meats, vegetables, and breads. We use three spices: salt, pepper, ketchup and maybe some kind of hot sauce in a fancy joint.
11. You bring 'Coke' into my house, it better be brown, wet and served over ice. You bring 'Mary Jane' into my house, she better be cute.
10. College and High School Football is as important here as the Giants, the Yankees, the Mets, the Lakers and the Knicks, and a dang site more fun to watch. Millionaires should play better than that.
9. Yeah, we have golf courses. But don't hit the water hazards - it spooks the fish.
8. Turn down your car stereo. Thumping ain't music. We don't want to hear it.
7.  "Cow Town" is not considered an insult to the folks from Denver, Dallas, Oklahoma City, etc. so save your breath.
6. I drive a pickup truck because I want to.  Hay is darned hard to unload from the back seat of a BMW.
5. "Cottage" is a type of cheese.  We vacation in a "cabin".
4.  "Mountain" shouldn't be part of the name unless it's over 8,000 feet.
3. When someone says "But it's a dry heat", it is OK to respond with "So's my oven, and I'm not moving inTHERE, either!"
2. Never call a politician a horse's rear end.  This is horse country.
1.Pull your pants up, You look like an idiot. (just can't say it often enough...)