With the exception of getting Bert and Ernie out for a walk with their packs. Gotta work on getting those boys in shape!
I've added the pack bags to their saddles, so they get used to the "extra" weight, and the feel of the material against their sides. We don't have many trails in the immediate area, so we end up on what country roads we can find, which usually have more traffic than either I or the boys would like, since passing cars tend to freak them out a bit. Fortunately, we have friends who live at the end of one of the longer and steeper country roads within walking distance, which makes for a decent training walk where we can let go of the leads. The boys do better at keeping up when allowed off lead, but are unpredictable enough when cars pass us that I can only let them off when we've gotten off the main road.
We do gain several hundred feet of elevation on this walk- these pictures were taken at the highest part, and our turning around point.
|What's that in your hands? Can I eat it?|
Notice how Ernie is in the lead (usually the case), and how Bert's tongue is sticking out. Bert is still getting tired faster than I would like, but at least there isn't any (extremely) pitiful bleating like the last time we walked up this road. That was two years ago, the boys didn't have any weight on them and it was around 90 degrees. So I suppose this is an improvement.
|Bert sees many hills in the distance and contemplates laying down right there should we decide to go any further.|
I was hoping to get a nice picture of the Valley, or possibly the Sierra Mountains, which you can see on a clear day from this location, but it was so hazy, we couldn't even see Sacramento.
|Pssssst! Bert! Snacking opportunity this way!|
The boys don't seem to mind the addition of the packs to their saddles, and while the horses, llamas, and alpacas we pass on our walks seem to find them fascinating, Bert and Ernie pay them little attention. The one thing Bert couldn't seem to tear himself away from on our walk was the half blind teacup poodle with all of three teeth who was barking and tugging at the end of his leash as though he was fixing to tear Bert to shreds. I had to drag Bert away from the little monster because he had stopped walking and just wouldn't stop staring at it.
We did get asked if we were walking alpacas (it's the big ears and all the wool that fools 'em every time), and another person slowed her car down to ask if we let children ride our animals, and by the way, what were they? When I told her they were goats, she wanted to know how much I'd charge, since her daughter wanted to ride a pony, but she though that would be too dangerous.
Somehow, a goat seems safer?
Good to know. And now I'm tempted to see if the great Google will find me some goat saddles, as there is apparently an area of the goat-related economy I've been ignoring all this time.