Saturday, February 02, 2008
Through the desert on a horse with no name
What's the first thing you think of when you plan a trip to Las Vegas?
Horseback riding, of course! If you're me, anyway. That's the first thing I think of when I plan most trips. Before I left Denver, I bookmarked a bunch of sites for trail rides near Vegas.
Yesterday, I went for the Jesse James Sunset Steak Ride offered by Sagebrush Ranch. We saddled up for a two-hour ride, to be followed by a "cowboy dinner." (Naturally it included baked beans; shades of "Blazing Saddles.") I was put on a very furry and wonderfully responsive chestnut quarter(ish) horse.
"What's his name?" I asked. No one remembered. So now I can truthfully quote America (whose songs I never could abide).
My experience was unlike the songwriter's, however. For starters, the desert was chill, still and dead quiet. Though there was "no one for to give you no pain," there were plenty of thorny shrubs and ultra-spiky cactus to avoid. And other than a distant helicopter or airplane, the air was NOT "full of sound." We didn't hear any animals or birds, though we saw bobcat and coyote footprints. In fact, the only visible wildlife was a bee that briefly hitched a ride on the wrangler's shirt back and an eagle that silently soared into a treetop at the end of our ride. No flies either. Bliss!
To misquote another song, I love to see that evening sun go down--especially when I'm someplace wild and beautiful. And QUIET.