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A Walk Before Rain

COARSEGOLD – With a storm set to roll into the foothills tonight, and clouds already pulling together in the darkening day, my friend and I set out in search of our elusive winter and instead found only signs of spring.

Mudge Ranch is a glorious place for a walk, at the top of Road 420 south of Deadwood. The streets are fairly well maintained, with not too many places to turn an ankle. The views are unstoppable.

Something told me to bring my camera, and as we made our way around Barcus Circle, we spotted a mare and her foal munching on fresh grass; they were blanketed and content.

Horse and foal - Mudge Ranch - photo by Kellie Flanagan 2014Sometimes when I walk around the foothills in spring, when the depth and variety of color is so fully saturated you can almost taste the green, I have to stop and remind myself I’m not in some high-end car commercial. It’s that beautiful.

Walking for the sake of walking is sublime. That wasn’t the case today. Instead, we were dragged by our dog through the neighborhood, causing the three other dogs on that route to go completely insane with their barking and running. To our left, the sky was growing slightly ominous. To our right, the day remained blue and sunny.

Daffodils are still blooming and the sweet smell of budding fruit trees drifted alongside the smoke from chimneys where people are at home, maybe making chili and cornbread like we’ll do.

BlossomsWe talked about this weather system that’s coming in, and whether or not we’ll get snow at our elevation. The flowers of the foothills, which look so delicate, are surprisingly resilient when it comes to the beatings of wind, rain and snow. The daffodils and tulips pop back up once the sun shines.

So it is with a stroll in nature and a good friend. We started out a little slow, this being Monday, but there’s nothing like an hour-long, mid-day “walk ‘n talk” to perk you right up. Enjoy the rain and watch out for April Fools!

Foal cropped - 2014 - Kellie Flanagan

CU BlossomsHorse and foal cu - Mudge Ranch - 2014 - Kellie FlanaganGrazing

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