Monday, January 20, 2014

1.5 miles around the fenceline, with a donkey and a dog

This is all Hannah and Chico's fault. Ever since they started their grand adventure walking around Wales, 
I've fancied myself walking somewhere very far with one of my donkeys. My adventure won't start until 2020 or so, 
when I retire, but there's no time like the present to start training.

"1.5 miles around the fenceline, with a donkey and a dog " pales in comparison to
"1000 miles around Wales, with a donkey," but it was a beautiful day and we had a grand time.

Lucy: We'd get a lot farther faster if Smooch didn't stop to sniff and pee every 10 yards.

Until Hannah's book is published, I've had to satisfy my what's-it-really-like-to-walk-for-months-on-end craving 
with memoirs of people who have hiked the "big three" trails in the U.S. - the Appalachain Trail, 
the Pacific Coastal Trail, and the Continental Divide Trail. The stories are entertaining and helpful, 
but they'd be so much better if a donkey were along for the adventure. Hurry and finish that book, Hannah! 
I'll need all the advice I can get. (p.s. It's not too late to help Hannah get the book published – here's the link.)

I wonder who will accompany me on my adventure six years from now, and where will we go?
Will I have bought a decent pair of walking shoes by then? Who will ranchsit for a year?
So many questions.

Lucy's on board as long as I bring plenty of trail snacks.


  1. Love the three sets of pretty little feet. The sets on either end are tied in a contest for cuteness.

    I wouldn't want, in polite company, to say "ranchsit" three times.

  2. The Wisdom of Donkeys by Andy Merrifield is a lovely book about a trek with a donkey - it's been out for awhile but I keep it by my bed and read bits of it over and over again.

  3. well you had 7 ranch sitters, so if you divide the year by 7... hummm just and idea... i love the shot of Smooch and Lucy standing at idle while you snap away..

  4. :) Love the 3 sets of feet.
    It's too bad your fair Lucy will be to aged to accompany you on such a trip in 2020. She'd be perfect.

  5. Love the idea - for you, a dog and a donkey, not for me! Though I would ranchsit for a year. :)
    Speaking of books of people hiking the US trails, I just finished reading "Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail" by Cheryl Strayed. It almost made me want to strap on my hiking boots and backpack once again - I did part of that trail almost 50 years ago, when I was about fourteen.

  6. Ooooo!
    Let's do a group walk!

  7. The feet shot is my fav this is great to have dreams and even better when we fulfill them.

  8. Carson -
    When I was about 13, one of my siblings had bad knees. So instead of our usual two week backpack trip, my family hired two standard donkeys to carry our gear and make the hike possible. We hiked out of Mineral King, CA, over Black Rock Pass and the Great Western Divide, and into Five Lakes Basin. Cocoa and Bingo carried all the stuff a family of five needed for our adventure. Of course, being seasoned backpackers, we traveled light. One of my siblings was given the responsibility for Cocoa, and Bingo was MINE. Of all of the wonderful sailing and backpacking adventures of my childhood, that trip still burns in my brain. I fell hard in love with donkeys and have dreamt of having a couple for trekking and companionship ever since. I will be sixty next year and I am getting closer to manifesting my dream. Maybe you could start with going for a week long walk?
    I love Lucy.

    - denver

  9. Have you ever followed Bernice Ende of Ende of the Trail blog? She has done thousands of miles on horseback and up until recently with her dog. She is in her late 50s and a real inspiration. My advise is go before your feet get too old.

  10. very good start: all walks start with the first steps... plus you have all that time ahead for good planning

  11. what about the poop paper? have you thought about that part of the project?

  12. I would be using a dog stroller for my girl Chewy. She can't keep up like she could when she was a pup. All though, It says it's "All Terrane"! LOL i'll just ranch sit for ya.

  13. You always surprise me! I love this new dream of yours and look forward to seeing your plan take shape and form.

  14. Ok, mother worry here... Whomever you leave behind for a year is going to think you are gone for good... It's a thrilling project but i'll be thevoice of the ones left behind!! Then again. I trust you. You love them beasts. So do a lot of people. You'll do what's best. Sorry for freaking out ;)

  15. Your walks with your dog and donkey in preparation are going to be great fun.

  16. Have you read Bill Bryson's A walk in the Woods? It's the story of his experience walking the AT. It's wonderfully entertaining as well as informative. It's available on if you would prefer to listen to it. I too enjoyed Wild by Cheryl Strayed. Very different from Bill Bryson but a good read/listen. It too is available on think it's a fantastic idea and if I thought I could manage it, I'd happily hop a plane or 2 and come ranch sit for a year!!! Heather