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Monday, August 9, 2010

HorsebackingintheCalderaMountains




If only I had room for my straw cowgirl hat in my luggage. My second day in Boquete found me traversing the different trails in the Caldera mountains. Sounds great right? Well, I am not a natural with horses. Once I was on the saddle I didn’t want to come off because I knew it would be a process, and another boost to get me back on. And my knees started to ache because they were my grip on the saddle when we crossed over steams. I was nervous to pull on the reigns because it always gave my pretty pony the idea it was time to pick up to a jaunt, which only made my knees grip harder. And harder still when we were crossing streams that you wouldn’t run across because of the depth and larger size boulders the horse strategically made his way around. Oh yes, and this is not a beginner trail persay… it’s steep going up, which means even steeper going down.
However, let me tell you. Everything turned out perfectly, and who wants to ride a horse on flat ground, that is predictable. Giddy up! I felt more comfortable as the switchbacks guided us to a photogenic viewepoint of Volcan Baru, the highest point in Panama, about 11.000 feet. And on a clear day you can see the Pacific Ocean. Regardless of if you will find cloud cover in the views, get out here and ride! There is nothing but green, gold, running streams, and volcanic walls surrounding you. And hopefully my horse that had the punchy personality.
I don’t think my riding sound effects off “EASY GIRL!” and just a plain “AHHHHHHHH!” (only something an wannabe cowgirl would say) was entertainment enough for my horsey. This horse found entertainment in teasing the other horses. If one of these studly stallions found his way at a water stop, mine would put his head right in there until the other would stand straight up and walk away with some sass. Persistant little bugger! Even when water was not involved he would nudge the other horses until they nudged back and our cowboy guide, Nodier, would have us separate. I am telling you these horses will get you to the bottom and top no problem and you will laugh along the way. I think its time for me to invest in a real cowgirl hat.

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