Thursday, April 2, 2009

My exciting evening

Preface to my story: I try to make it out to ride Kylie every night after work, sometimes things come up, but lately I have been pretty consistent. It is nice if Chad is home from work and goes with me. We can take the carpool lane (which saves alot of time with the horrible LA traffic), and the dogs enjoy the outing. Most nights there is maybe one other person there, but everyone else rides during the day. I am on my own many nights.

Tonight two of my friends were out at the barn, and we got to talking and it began to get dark. One of the girls headed home and on the way out told us to be careful of the bears. There have been signs posted around the stable that bears have been knocking over the trash cans at night, and have been seen on several occasions. Yikes! Luckily, my friend said she'd keep me company while I put Kylie away. After we untacked her, and tucked her into bed we were on our way back to my car (I was going to drive her down to her car on the other side of the ranch), and I heard a noise. It was a loud noise, it sounded like D was crinkling paper in her pocket and it was echoing, but amplified, very amplified. We both looked at each other and realized what that noise was...the bear was crossing the river that borders the ranch only feet away from where we were! That noise was something very big splashing his way right towards us. I screamed, and panicked and felt like I was in one of those dreams/nightmares where I couldn't get the car door opened fast enough. My heart was pounding and I was hyperventilating. I am not good in any kind of emergency situation, especially when my life is at risk. I was like Mario Andretti and floored it out of there leaving a big cloud of dust behind. I think it was about an hour before my blood pressure was back to normal. That was quite an anadrenaline rush, and not in a good way. Now I am wondering what I am going to do about my evening rides. I surely do not want to become a bear snack. How do you protect yourself from a bear?

I know you are not supposed to run from a bear, but geez it is for your life! If a Black Bear approaches, you are supposed to try to demonstrate to the bear that you may be a danger to it (yeah right). Make yourself appear larger, stand up, raise your arms and open your jacket. Yell at the bear, bang pots and pans or whatever objects you may have with you, and create a general commotion. I guess I better start bringin my cookware to go ride my horse. I also read that bears are known to eat the horse manure for the residual grain. So much for cutting off the food supply they are after!


fernvalley01 said...

We have bears around here and I have never seen on . bells on your horse might be effective , for the most part a bear wants nothing to do with you. Odds are good your horse will tell you long before you see the bear that there is something around . She will likely get veryt alert and be watchful, mayber snorting a little . But if she is used to the smell that may be all you get . The biggest shock I ever had was Catana was not particularly afriad of bears , we came upon a momma Grizzly in the mountains ,and other than she was snortinfg a little my horse remained calm , I trusted that mare with my life ,so If she didn't panic ,neither did I . We did however change directions fairly promptly and Moma and cubs moved off

Kathleen Coy said...

Wow, be careful out there! The bear is probably more afraid of you, but still... maybe not ride alone for a while, hopefully it will move on?

CT said...

Oh my! That's way too much of an exciting evening! Glad you're ok!- CT

jrosey said...

Oh my gosh...I have bear up in my neck of the woods too. Saw one running down the road in front of my car last August on my way to work. YIKES! Good to know they might like to dine on the horse poo in my pasture. Good thing for electric fences! Love your blog...thanks for stopping by mine! :)

allhorsestuff said...

Oh man Tara!
Um...I will send you some Bear mace, when I get mine!
I think the first thing is to get rid of the garbage cans!
When we went horse camping last year...there were bears because of garbage. so the camp made a rule to put it away inside the cars at night and daytimes...there were NO garbage cans to attract them as we hauled it all out.

Bell and pans yea..but I will send yout he mace case they approach.

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