Despite making sure the trails on Miller Peninsula were clear the day before, a couple of trees fell overnight. BCH certified sawyer Rick King brought his chainsaw and cleared the way. (Courtesy of Suzanne King)

Despite making sure the trails on Miller Peninsula were clear the day before, a couple of trees fell overnight. BCH certified sawyer Rick King brought his chainsaw and cleared the way. (Courtesy of Suzanne King)

HORSEPLAY: Annual ‘OPEN the Trails’ fundraiser slated in July

HEY! SOME LOCAL horse owners are scrambling to find feed for their stock animals. I was told by more than one hay seller that we can expect another shortage this year because of too much rain delaying the first of three harvests. I certainly hope it stays rainless long enough to cut, dry and bale for the number of days needed for these three cuttings.

Thanks to the abundant rain, I’m very grateful to have a pasture full of lush green grass for my two horses to graze on. But too much of it can cause a horse to get laminitis, an extremely painful and crippling condition that can be caused by excessive sugar intake from grain or lush pasture. To combat this, I’ve been keeping my horses in their paddock and giving them hay there, letting them out to graze, on average, seven hours a day.

Olympic Peninsula Equine Network (OPEN) is having a fundraiser to pay for feed and care for all its horses. OPEN takes in horses who were rescued because of neglect, death or changes in circumstances of their owners.

On Saturday and Sunday, July 9-10, OPEN will host its annual “OPEN the Trails” campout and fundraiser at Layton Hill Horse Camp, 2514 Chicken Coop Road, east of Sequim. Tickets are available on OPEN’s website, olypen equinenet.org. They are $50 per person. Afternoon and evening events include trail rides, games, demonstrations by equine professionals, a silent auction and a campfire social and music. If you can’t make it to the fundraiser, you also can make a donation on the website.

Attendees can also spend the night at the camp. Reservations are required, and sites can be booked at hipcamp.com. Just enter Layton Hill Horse Camp into the location search, then choose and reserve your campsite. The dry campsite, which includes a pen if you bring a horse, is an additional $25.

Rhody Ride

A warm, sunny day greeted Back Country Horsemen Peninsula Chapter members for the annual Rhody Ride at Miller Peninsula on May 14. Members Linda Morin and Donna Hollatz and a hungry crowd of 24 made short work of the buffet breakfast, which included egg casseroles, fresh fruit, muffins and cinnamon rolls. The grassy field held many horse trailers, and 16 riders took to the trails after breakfast. Several rhododendrons were in bloom, and everyone enjoyed themselves.

Scouts on horseback had flagged two trail routes the day before, but despite the pre-planning, two large trees came down overnight, forcing some groups to re-route. But that is the nature of trail riding. Carrying a small saw is always recommended, but in this case, the trees were more than 12 inches in diameter, so they weren’t cleared until three days later by one of our sawyers with a chainsaw.

Because of ongoing work on the lower fork of the Skokomish River and LeBar Horse Camp to clear extensive winter damage to the trails, several of our members were unable to be at Rhody Ride. Thank you, guys and gals, for all the work you do.

Their next ride is Saturday, June 18, at 10 a.m. at the Dan Kelly Trailhead. It’s open to all BCH members and guests. Check the group’s website at pbchw.org or its Facebook page for more information.

________

Karen Griffiths’ column, Peninsula Horseplay, appears the second and fourth Saturday of each month.

If you have a horse event, clinic or seminar you would like listed, please email Griffiths at kbg@olympus.net at least two weeks in advance. You can also call her at 360-460-6299.

BCH Peninsula Chapter members enjoy friendship and a hearty breakfast before their annual Rhody Ride at Miller Peninsula. (Courtesy of Donna Hollatz)

BCH Peninsula Chapter members enjoy friendship and a hearty breakfast before their annual Rhody Ride at Miller Peninsula. (Courtesy of Donna Hollatz)

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