Cow Creek Ranch, Pecos New Mexico. Sunday September 20, 2015

After I published last night’s post Steve remarked that I did not embellish much about the road to Cow Creek. I told him that I blocked a lot of it out of my memory as it was such a bad, bad road. Steve said that the road was bed rock in many parts and that at times we couldn’t even tell where the road actually was. Yep. That is why I didn’t remember the road. It was bad!

Here I am at breakfast, reading the literature about the history of Cow Creek.

Please don’t quiz me! This is the view of the dining area from the opposite direction.

I can tell you that Cow Creek was founded in the 1800’s as a boarding ranch for wealthy English boys to learn Western ranching. Generally these would be second sons as only the first born son would inherit the estate. In the 1930’s Cow Creek was transformed into a guest ranch. It’s for sale now, if you want to buy it!

Breakfast!

I love my whipped cream on coffee!

Here is a view of Cow Creek and the valley.

After breakfast I wandered down to the horse barn for my scheduled ride.

Can you see the fish in the stream?

Here I am with one of the staff and Lanier one of the owners. This ranch had the first riding waiver that I had to sign that mentioned the possibility of death, I looked at Lanier and asked her how often that happened. I did not relish the thought of being their first casualty!

The creek at Cow Creek was very pretty.

Unfortunately there had been forest fires a few years ago and the hill sides were severely damaged.

This is some damage from a bear that was clawing on the tree!

Look how big the scars are from the bear claws!

My posture looked good, I was happy to be almost done with the ride! At one point in the ride my horse stumbled and I semi fell off it. No worries! I lived to tell the story!

Thank you for the ride Horse!

After my ride I walked back to the room where I rested for the rest of the day. The elevation really got to me and I was exhausted.

This is the living room where guests could hang out. I don’t even remember sitting here reading. I blocked out a lot about the stay at this ranch as I was so uncomfortable with everything about this place. The living room does look cozy though!

This is what one of the rooms looked like. I didn’t find any guest logs to find out if any famous people had stayed here before. Nor were there any other guests staying here to tell you any fun stories about them!

The bathroom.

This is where our meals were cooked.

This is one of the fish that Steve caught in the morning from one of the lower beats on Cow Creek.

Steve didn’t really like these lower beats as they were enhanced.

The fish was a real beauty, but Steve prefers less constructed streams. This fish was 21 inches.

So Steve and his guide moved upstream. This was one of the spots where Steve fished later in the day.

Isn’t this a beauty? He preferred the wild trout as opposed to the larger fish in the stocked ponds. This was his first Rio Grande cut throat.

Here is another area where he caught many wild trout.

I tried sitting here to read for a little bit while Steve was fishing. It got a bit too sunny for me so I went back inside.

I could see the horses gather near the gate while I read. You can see all the fire damage here.

This view is of one of the ponds that were created on Cow Creek.

The rooms were in a motel shape arrangement. They had a very bad fire that destroyed much of the landscape here. You can see how close the fire was to the lodge.

Steve came back from fishing to report that he caught 25 fish for the day, rainbow trout, brook trout, brown trout, cutbow and a rio cutt.

Then it was time for dinner. We didn’t have the cook come for lunch as she had to drive about an hour each way to get to the ranch.

We had a somewhat green salad.

Dinner was pot roast. Followed by the cake from the previous night.

There were many hummingbird feeders under the eaves.

Here is a close up of one of the Hummingbirds. Aren’t they cute?

Off to bed!

What is your favorite type of bird?

Are you a second son?

Would you rather catch a large stocked fish or a small native fish?

Is this place too dull for you? No famous people, no interesting guests with interesting background stories! No pictures of good food! I might as well just hang up my blogging skills. Instead I will persevere, you never know when something exciting will happen!

Brush Creek Ranch, Saratoga Wyoming. Saturday September 12, 2015

I’m back! Did you miss me? I am continuing our road trip west.

Today would be our last day at Brush Creek Ranch. As usual I had breakfast by myself. Steve would be off fishing. I would do some riding. Buffets always yield unattractive plating!

Here is Steve’s guide checking out the water. You can tell that he is the guide as he has the net. Also if the guide were taking the picture he would either have the sport centered in the picture or on the left of the frame looking toward the river. I should stop complaining, and just be thankful that I have a picture of the beautiful stream!

While Steve fished I rode. I bought two shirts and one pair of jeans to wear while I rode. This shirt is a white buffalo plaid. Buffalo plaids are usually red and black. A new fun fact for you!

Below us you see the Artist Colony and some of the creek side cabins. We stayed in one of the Creekside cabins on one of our stays. Brush Creek invites artists (musicians, composers, photographers, painters) to stay for the season and create.

Now would be a great time to talk about the couple from last night, S and R. They live in the Denver area. She had an absolutely magic voice. Very cultured, with a very interesting accent. While we were waiting to start our ride I told her to keep her eyes out for one of the other guests as she had a three carat diamond. I was very impressed with the ring. I love diamonds. Even larger diamonds on someone else’s hand. There is a joke that a diamond can only be too big if it is on some else’s hand!

She smiled and told me that the ring was nice, but that the ring from her first husband was a 6 carat flawless stone. At that, I shut up but of course the wheels in my head started to spin. How would I be able so get the background story out of her? What was the backstory? Why would she dump him? Did he cheat on her? Did she find out he liked to play with the members of the other team? Was he dead?

I pondered this all afternoon on my next ride. I did lots of pondering as you can imagine!

Here is a beautiful fish from Steve’s fishing.

This is a rainbow trout. I think that it is a close up of the same fish, but who knows? Only Steve and his guide know! Steve caught 46 fish that day!

On my afternoon ride I found this beautiful deer shed. I am happy that we were going to drive back home as I don’t think that I would have been able to fit it in my suitcase!

Steve and I met back for dinner. This was my entree. It looks like it was polenta with elk tenderloin. It could be something else entirely also!

Dessert was a berry crumble.

So we met my new friends from my ride at the saloon before dinner. I asked them to join us for dinner. I have scrambled their faces to preserve their privacy. We met a new couple also. The couple at the far end of the table run a travel agency that specializes in hunting trips. Brush Creek has much to offer for those that like to shoot and hunt. The ranch used to have bison that were available to hunt , but the bison kept escaping and got in the neighbor’s fields. The neighbors were not very happy at that as the fences were ruined and the cattle were bothered. Bothered cattle do not bring happy cattle prices. So that very pricey hunting option had to be scrapped. The couple on the right, S are the couple that we met last night and I went on the ride with today. S is the owner of the six carat diamond.

Now for the tale of S and R. (Which I found out about during cocktail hour at the saloon, this was not something that was discussed at dinner. Who discusses their ex-husband during dinner?) R, the husband, was a senior Vice President for a very large mining, gas and oil development company. They live in the Denver area. He has traveled all around the world managing projects. S was studying to get her degree in social work. She was not in her twenties so this must have been a second career for her.

Now for the story. You will notice that I kind of jump right into my questions. That’s me! Some might think I am brusque, but I prefer to call it an efficient strategy.

“So how did you get a 6 carat flawless engagement ring? Was it a family heirloom?”

“My first husband was a Saudi Prince.”

“Oh.”

Yes, even I can be rendered speechless.

No, I did not ask if she was wife number 1, 2, or 3. Remember I do not ask every question I might want to know the answer to! Nor did I ask which Saudi Prince she had been married to. There happen to be 15,000!

Somehow the answers to some of my divorce questions came out (I did not ask what caused the divorce! It appears that not all of the Arab sheikh style of Harlequin romances have a happy ending in real life!) S lived in Switzerland for two years while the divorce was finalized. That is where her accent came from. It was a combination of upper crust English and a European component. I don’t know why it took two years, but the divorce did. As someone who has been happily married for over 40 years I don’t know nothing about divorces!

S kept all of the jewelry, and keeps it in the vault. She takes it out when she goes to black tie events. As the jewels are not from her current husband she is uncomfortable wearing them on her normal activities. I remarked that S might have been married to a prince, but now she is married to the Real Prince in her life! Isn’t that a romantic phrase? Perhaps I should write romance novels afterall!

Thus endeth our stay at Brush Creek Ranch. Remember how I mentioned previously that I stay in touch with some of the people we meet on our trips? On a trip years later, Steve and I did meet up with R and S!

Do you have any buffalo plaid shirts in your house?

Are you married to a Saudi Prince?

Instead of a third question I thought I would show you what a six carat diamond looks like! This was not her ring, I found it on the internet. You might be wondering what the price point for a 6 carat, D colored internally flawless diamond is…about $550,000. Now I don’t know if her diamond was internally flawless or not. That is still some hunk of change for a ring.

Brush Creek Ranch, Saratoga Wyoming. Friday September 11, 2015

Today would be a special day for me as Steve was going to spend the whole day with me! After breakfast we were going to the gun range and then we were going to go to Robber’s Roost on a trail ride.

This was the set up for the rifle shooting. The rifle was placed on the little bean bag for stability.

Here is Steve getting instructions on how to shoot at the fake prairie dogs.

Next it was my turn.

Steve is getting instructions on the shot gun.

Here is Steve shooting at the targets with the shot gun. As my shoulders couldn’t lift the shot gun, only Steve did this.

My turn with the long guns. We didn’t shoot at the closer targets with these long guns. The closer targets were used with the pistols.

Next is was Steve’s turn to shoot the long range rifle.

Here is a better view of the targets. I think they got painted every night.

These are the types of guns that were available, and the corresponding ammunition.

I enjoyed using the pistol. It is much lighter than the other weapons! Our first year the instructor let my use his personal pistol. It had a laser which made it a lot easier for me to aim at the target. I still did very well with the pistol.

Here we are all done with our shooting lessons.

It was nice having lunch with Steve. Usually I am on my own.

Cookies for dessert!

Here I am all saddled up and ready to ride with Steve. Of course you wouldn’t know if this picture was taken after our ride and I was using the fence to hold my self up!

Here is our guide retelling the story of how this lookout got it’s name. I think any high point gets the name of Robber’s Roost out in the west!

The view from the top of Robber’s Roost is tremendous!

Trying to get the horses to poses for a picture can be difficult!

Here are some nice pictures of Steve and I coming down the mountain.

Dinner tonight was Creekside. There was a big barbecue. It was much different than previous nights as the weekend crowd included a lot of families. We had been spoiled with the ranch being mostly adults only the previous days.

Nevertheless we had a fun time. We met a couple from Denver. They had very exotic accents. Hopefully I will find out tomorrow where they are from!

Do you think Steve should grow his beard back?

Do you think I will find out more about the couple we had dinner with?

Do you have a normal accent or an exotic accent?

What do you think makes an accent exotic?

Brush Creek Ranch, Wyoming. Thursday September 10, 2015

No breakfast pictures today. Instead it’s straight to archery. I think this is where I really realized how bad my shoulders are. I couldn’t draw the bow back at all to shoot. I had fun watching though!

Then it was back to the lodge for lunch. Salad, salmon and wagyu sliders.

Dessert was Apple Brown Betty and lemon bars.

Then it was off for a ride with a male wrangler. All comments are kept to myself! Although I might add that he had a nice seat. Ha Ha!

We forded some streams.

Then on the way back we saw the yurts where you can have a massage in the middle of the meadow.

Then it was back to meet Steve for dinner. Steve had a bit of a slow day and only caught 4 fish. None were picture worthy, so no pictures for you!

Caesar salad for a starter.

Then chicken for our entree.

No dessert pictures for you!

Was this blog post too short?

Are some posts too long?

Do you have arthritis in your neck shoulders and hips like I do?

Brush Creek Ranch, Saratoga Wyoming. Tuesday September 8, 2015

Steve went down to breakfast and it seemed that my email was received after all! Everything was “How are you Steve? I have your fishing all set up!”

Steve had originally arranged all his fishing before we had arrived at Brush Creek. When we were at the activities barn yesterday all his requests were missing, and we were not sure that he was going to be able to fish the water that he had wanted to fish. I had mentioned this in the email yesterday to the VP also, complaining that Steve was having problems with scheduling the week’s fishing. Well, today it was all a different story! The fishing schedule was all rearranged, and Steve was going to be able to fish when and where he wanted to.

In fact, although we were not going to be moved into a cabin, a king size bed was going to be moved across the hall and we would be moved there and have quiet Mountain views. I don’t often complain, Steve and I have a tendency to vote with our feet. However in this case, I was pretty riled up and did complain. I thought that if we were moved across the hall I would be happier.

If I don’t see that an accommodation can be made, I decide to vote with my feet and also warn others about the type of service that they might get. I don’t feel that I owe any business my review. I only let businesses that I like hear about how they might make changes. I think the perfect job for me would be a paid luxury hotel consultant who is a secret stayer. Instead I am a luxury hotel consultant who pays to stay at hotels and gives the hotels my free advice!

This is one of the reasons we keep coming back. A 20 inch brown on the Encampment.

This is Cheyenne the horse that I rode today. There is so much to remember! Shoulders back, chest open, seat firm, hold reins like an ice cream cone, let the horse know who is boss, don’t let him eat grass, lean forward going up hills, lean back going down hills, when you post go up and down faster. If you are hitting the saddle hard it is because you are too slow for the beat, look ahead, not down, sit up like a girl, not slumping like a guy-they are protecting their equipment! Too much too remember but having fun anyway.

This was where I hung out before lunch. Can you believe I got a little sun burn? It’s the high elevation and poorly applied sunscreen!

Dessert from lunch today. I forgot to take pictures of the buffet. Oh well.

Steve came back from fishing on the Encampment to spend lunch with me. He caught three rainbow trout and a 20 inch brown trout. A good morning for him.

After lunch he spent the rest of the afternoon on Brush Creek fishing. He caught 16 brown trout ranging from seven to sixteen inches. All in all a good day.

Once again, I forgot to take dinner pictures.

Dessert. Bread pudding with coffee ice cream and some other stuff. I showed restraint.

Was today’s post too short?

Do you like to ride?

Do you ride Western or English? Are there more differences than shinier boots when you ride English?

The High Lonesome Ranch, De Beque Colorado. Wednesday September 7, 2016

Fresh berries and Aunt Linda’s Granola. Linda was the loquacious breakfast cook. She made all the homemade jams, cooked breakfast and also made Granola. Her husband was one of the drivers to meet the guides. Aunt Linda’s husband was quite the talker, but next to Linda he was very quiet!

Home made English Muffins.

Roasted potatoes.

Fresh cherry coffee cake.

This is one of the guests that we met, Sharon. She was so kind to me. She lent me her black Patagonia vest to wear at dinner several nights as I always got cold in my thin tops. At first I thought that she was snooty, but then found out that it was merely her Connecticut accent! Sharon and her husband Bill, were here fishing. Unfortunately it was to be his last fishing trip as he died six months after returning home. Steve and I hope to keep traveling, Steve will fish, while I befriend strangers for as long as we can!

This was Sharon’s last morning at the Ranch, and it was Gennifer with a G, who loved orange and her husband Larry’s, also. I always get sad at the end of my stay or when guests leave. I meet some truly interesting and wonderful people. The good part is that sometimes I am able to stay connected with some of them and see them another time. What a wonderful thing to be able to meet people and make a connection to them! Strangers to friends in just hours!

While Steve fished I went riding again.

One of the guests C, and Marion the manager of the riding program.

Before we hit the trail we worked on some equestrian skills. Here I am walking over logs.

We also worked on barrel racing, although in my case it was barrel walking around!

We saw an air squadron flying in formation!

A view from my ride.

The view towards the road to our cabin.

You have already seen the outside of the cabin and the pond across the way.

This was my sack lunch that I brought back to the cabin to eat.

Outside the kitchen area herbs were grown in a hydroponic system.

The dinner menu. (In case you refuse to read the commentary!)

What the chef called a Caesar salad. I’ve never had one with cabbage before!

Here are the rolls. Covered in butter. Highly caloric, but yummy!

Prime Rib with onion rings.

Roasted potatoes, unfortunately they never got passed to me!

Fresh De Beque green beans and tomatoes.

There is a lemon tart below the lemon custard.

We had a new group of guests come today. Here is a picture of all my new friends. They were a large group of guys. Of course I asked Steve to take a picture of me and all the guys. Me and 15 good looking guys, not including my husband, who refused to join me in the picture! This would be a reverse harem story in my romance novels!

Would I find out why the guys were at High Lonesome?

You will have to read tomorrow’s post to find out!

That is such a a good tease that I won’t add any more questions!

The High Lonesome Ranch, De Beque Colorado. Tuesday September 6, 2016

Steve and I headed down the road to the main lodge for breakfast. Steve would be going off with a guide and I was planning on riding.

Fresh yogurt at breakfast.

Granola and fresh fruit.

More berries.

Quiche with a avocado.

I went on a ride with my wrangler.

She took a picture of me facing both directions!

I spied some deer outside our cabin after my ride.

I went back to the lodge to look around. If you wanted to you could hang out at night around a fire pit. We never did!

My sandwich. Brisket sandwich with match stick french fries.

Lunch included some great cookies! Many chocolate chips in these cookies.

Before Dinner Steve got to sign the book at High Lonseome for getting a grand slam. He became a member of The Grand Slam Club. There had been only 8 people so far this year to have reached this highly coveted accomplishment! He caught a brook, cutthroat, cut-bow and a brown trout. He got a special pin and bragging rights. All the fish have to be caught in one day. There was much festivities involved with the announcement, the chart signing and then the pin presentation. Well done Steve! Not for nothing, but Steve is generally one of the best anglers anywhere he goes!

Steve caught 23 fish this day including this four pound Rainbow!

Dinner started with a Frisée Salad and a fried egg on top.

Fresh rolls in butter.

Cassoulet with rabbit, elk and venison.

Apple Crisp ala mode for dessert.

One of the guests was Gennifer with a G. She loved Orange!

She had her orange hat!

And her orange boots! Gennifer with a G’s boots and hat were all custom made.

What is your favorite color?

Did you know that there used to be a car dealership in Albany called Orange Ford?

Their billboards had on them “What color is your Orange Ford?”. I thought that was the greatest. Unfortunately they were acquired by another dealership.

The former manager of Orange Ford was accused of embezzling over $750,000! So my next question is…Have you been caught embezzling over $750,000? I have no interest in any amounts under that number.

The High Lonesome Ranch, De Beque Colorado. Monday, September 5, 2016

Steve was out fishing for the day (surprise, surprise!)and I decided to drive to Fruita to see where all the fruit is grown that this area is know for. Fruita has an average of 300 days of sunshine a year. The weather is mild and there is plenty of water from the nearby Colorado River to irrigate the fruit trees.

While I was out and about Steve caught this monster fish. He caught it on the K Bar T on the White River. It was four pounds and 22 inches. As Steve does catch and release fishing he released it unharmed for someone else to catch on another day. He had a slow day as he only caught 4 fish. However if you catch a fish like this monster, you don’t really care how many fish you caught!

Here are some bowls of the local fruit from breakfast.

I could see this mesa along I-70.

Here is a closeup.

Fruita was very small. Population of around 13,000.

The Colorado River runs through town.

There was grape growing.

Interesting story alert!!!!!

Something that happened way before my time, but especially notable was the tale of Mike the Headless Chicken. In 1947 Mike’s owner tried to decapitate him for a chicken dinner. The axe was able to remove most of his head, except for the jugular vein, his ear and most of the brain stem.

When the chicken did not die, the owner decided to feed Mike with an eye dropper. Mike’s owner took the chicken on the side show circuit. Unfortunately Mike the Headless Chicken choked on a kernel of corn and died 18 months later.

My lunch.

In the afternoon I went for a ride.

This is where we turned around!

Before dinner we had an assortment of cheeses.

The menu for dinner.

Green salad.

As always at dinner there were plenty of fresh rolls.

Pot Roast as advertised!

Mashed potatoes.

Here is my plate of pot roast and mashed potatoes.

Dessert was Creme brûlée.

Are you surprised that there are some days that Steve does not go fishing?

Did you know that sometimes Steve does not catch a fish when he goes fishing?

Have you ever lost your head over anything?

Coyhaique Chile, Friday January 13, 2017

Today is our last full day at Coyhaique. We will learn all about sheep farming and attend an Asado-a South American Barbeque!

What better way to start the day than a a lemon meringue tart at breakfast? Well maybe if I had a raspberry Pisco sour also! I am trying to get Julio to make me a raspberry Pisco sour at dinner tonight. I think it gets lost in translation as he nods his head, yes to me, but always gives me a regular.

Gaston and I are off on our adventure. Cathy and Juan will hike as she doesn’t care to ride. On the right you see poplar trees that are so popular here. That and fences. Those are the key factors that I use to determine where I am. The country side is similar to New Zealand or Montana. They may have fences, but not in front of all the properties in town! Nor so many poplar trees!

Here you can see the effects of the constant Pantagonian wind. Tree growth is stunted on one side of the tree.

Off to the hills above Coyhaique we will go.

Our destination was Fundo Panguilemu. http://turismopanguilemu.com/en/ One of the products of the ranch is baby greens that they sell to local restaurants, inns and local markets. They also sell strawberries and fresh eggs.

This gentleman works on the farm and was packaging greens. He is from Denmark. That’s a long way from home. He also had a beautiful blonde man bun. I did not flirt with him. I might have wanted to though!

Here I am all saddled up. I forgot the horses name, but he was a delight. He looked intimidating as he was very dark. But he was a sweet heart. I got to wear chaps, to protect me from the prickers and gloves as it was very windy and cold. I also wore a helmet.

And we are off. Jose who owns the farm led us on the ride. We would be gone for three hours.

This was a wonderful horse riding experience. The scenery was tremendous and listening to Jose was incredible. He had been involved in consulting on sustainable agriculture and breeding of sheep. He finally got a chance to buy a ranch and put his ideas into action.

Here I am in Patagonian heaven. Shoulders back, heels down, toes up, chest open, head up and a big smile on my face!

Here is a photo showing the differences in farming methods using sustainable agriculture versus traditional methods. Field on the upper part of the screen is farmed using traditional Chilean methods. Grass appears brown and sparse. Field on the lower part of the photo shows thick green grass and flowers. Jose’s property used to look like the brown property. In just four years he has changed the land with his methods!

Jose’s theory is to have large numbers of sheep on smaller parcels with a shorter rotation. The poop fertilizes the ground, the weight of the animals compress the plants into the ground which enriches the soil. He feels you don’t necessarily need large amounts of property, just the proper number of animals and the right rotation from feeding area to area.

Such gorgeous scenery.

This is the sheep shearing shed. It was constructed to minimize animal stress when shearing.

Here I am avidly listening and thinking up my next set of questions.

Here is Gaston. I hope to find out if his wife’s name is Belle.

I would call Jose’s outfit half gaucho.

The dirt is so rich looking!

Jose and his wife Lizzie own approximately 2000 sheep. They have eight Pyrenees dogs to protect the flock from predators and rustlers. Unfortunately 20 sheep were recently stolen. The dogs lead the sheep from pasture to pasture.

There are 50 rams that are kept in a pasture until it is time for sheep sex. Pregnancy lasts about 5 months. There is only a short time that the male and female are allowed to get together. Lambing is controlled, you don’t want birthing to last for many weeks. It can’t be too early as it might be too cold, and the lambs will die. You don’t want it to late, as the fleece might not be ready for market. A ewe (mama lamb) often has twins.

This is Jose giving us a demonstration how the dogs herd the sheep. Some of the sheep were not rounded up when the group was moved to the new pasture. So Jose got his New Zealand herding dog (who had accompanied us on our ride) to send the sheep off to the other herd. Jose used a series of whistles to get the dog to move the sheep and then return to us. The Pyrenees dogs lead the sheep.

Here are hundreds of sheep , it was magical.

All those white dots are sheep and a few dogs.

Running and cavorting all over!

Just spread my ashes here when I die.

Rio Simpson. The ranch goes all the way down to the river. I was too polite to ask how many acres the ranch is.

A closeup of a healthy field.

Come on down! We will go see the cattle and the chicken sheds. The chicken sheds are the little white buildings on the right. Jose has a very large ranch!

The chicken coops are on trailers that move. They are moved every week or so. The ground beneath becomes very fertile. The chickens are free to come and go into the coops. This is considered pasture range chickens. Free range only means that the chickens can go outside. These guys get a fenced in large yard, with plenty of bugs and grass to eat. Healthy chickens produce eggs high in omega 3. The doors are shut at night so puma and mink can’t eat chicken for dinner.

Many happy chickens. About 500 eggs are collected each day at three different times. There are too many eggs to be gathered at once!

These cattle will not be happy much longer. They have just arrived at the farm. They will be castrated and then join the rest of the herd.

These cows and a few oxen are in the happy field. What happened to them, happened a long time ago!

Gaston leads the way to the yurts where we are to warm up and have some coffee to warm up. The Patagonian wind is fierce!

We cross the little bridges and go down hill. It’s hard to walk after a morning riding a horse.

Gaston says “Lindita, come inside!”

The interior is set up for a small snack.

This is the communal living and dining area. Jose and his wife Lizzie have ecotourists who can also stay here.

Do you need to wash your hands before lunch? Come along with me.

Toilet, sink and shower, but no cell coverage.

Who wants to sit for awhile? Doesn’t this room look cozy?

I did perch here before snack, that was really lunch.

The ceiling of the yurt. A gentle fan kept the air nice.

This is zucchini jam with almonds, I have never had that before. Delicious.

Warm rolls!

Scrambled eggs, the eggs were collected only hours ago! We also had Ham and local butter and cheese.

Jose has hair! I have helmet head!

Strawberries with whipped cream.

Beautiful flowers! This was a top notch operation.

A warm brownie with more whipped cream. I am calling this my Volcan Hudson that I didn’t get the day before.

Jose and Lizzie. She is from New Zealand. She always wanted to live on a sheep farm. I told them each how lucky they were to be married to an attractive wonderful person whose careers matched what they wanted to do!

Some fine wool in the making.

We are off to see the inside of they yurts that they have for guests. Are you curious? I was.

Just your basic yurt with bathroom attached.

A romantic bed set up for two.

Julio says “Gaston, you must see the view!”

Insert “awesome” in Spanish!

A full shower and toilet.

Heat and electricity, but no cell service!

My hips say no more horse back riding! I will ride along with Lizzie in the beat up car.

This is called the monkey puzzle tree. Araucaria. It is very prickly. It is considered sacred to the natives. It brings good luck to those that plant it.

Alas, it’s time to head back in the fancy jeep and return to Coyhaique River Lodge.

A final good bye to the farmhouse.

Good bye!

Our last gate. This has been one of my favorite rides. The scenery was breathtaking, and the lessons I learned on sustainable agriculture were very interesting.

Cattle on another ranch.

Another one lane bridge, and incoming on the bridge. We must wait our turn.

Rio Simpson, due to all the rain, the river has been too turbid to fish in. Perhaps we will come again so Steve can try his luck. Part of this river flows through Jose’s ranch.

I didn’t show you the kitchen in the lodge. Lots of garlic!

Do you want to see where they are roasting the lamb for dinner? Vegetarians avert your eyes! We will have dinner in the shed tonight.

Julio says “Si! You may take a picture!”

The split lamb is near the fire. All the fat drips away, leaving only the meat.

I can’t wait for dinner! Think that will be enough wine for dinner?

Raspberry Pisco Sour, Julio came through!

Steve was back on the smaller streams today and caught 34 trout. All in all he had a great week fishing, and is looking forward to fishing in South America again!

Here is one of his beauties that he caught.

A montage from his pictures.

These are some of the flies used by the anglers. This is the coffee table in the great room.

I mentioned before about adding ito or city to names to give nicknames. I inquired of Gaston and Francisco (Pancho) what the nicknames for all the guests would be. Steve=Stevito, Linda=Lindita, Gaston=Gastonito, Tim=Timisoara, Dan=Danilo, Cathy=Cathacito, Dave=Davito, and Eric=Ericito. Poor Bert was told no nickname for you, but Gaston and Pancho said that he could be called Tito!

Salud! Gaston’s wife did not show up, so C and I held court at our end of the table. Her husband had a conference call and had to miss dinner.

The Coderoelpole was ready.

The appetizer was empanadas. I thought mine was empty at first, and then realized that I was supposed to fill them with the pico de gallo.

The carving of the beast.

A few pieces got a little more cooked.

The lamb and a potato. The lamb tasted like roast pork. It was very good, but I thought that it would taste like lamb chops. It did not.

I told C that she got the Patagonian oyster.

Here is Steve telling C another story about a fish that he caught. C was very attentive to Steve’s story; as a fishing spouse, she knew when to nod her head and appear interested while Steve nattered on!

Alejandro, one of the guides does not like lamb. He likes potatoes. I asked if he was part Irish. Yes, by then I had drunk many Pisco Sours, and much wine, and thought that my question was exceedingly clever!

More Saluds!

Here is Tito, one of the guests doing the wine flask drinking game. He is a pro! Have I mentioned yet that I hate the sound of my voice?

Gaston is a real pro also!

Steve was a good sport and tried it also. You can tell that he was not a party animal in college! I kept him on a tight leash. I tried it also, but as Steve was taking the video, there was no usable video!

Yes, we finished many bottles of wine. This is halfway through the evening!

Dessert was a fried donut with caramel sauce. It was piping hot, and delicious, but if it were served with vanilla ice cream then it would have been spectacular!

Here I am, making the moves on Julio. I asked if he had a wife? No. A girlfriend? Gaston said that he had several! And now, one more!

More Saluds . As it was our last night there was a lot of toasting!

After dinner snackling of the Carcass . (You read that right, in our family we call snacking on a roast snackling).

Me and Julio. Girlfriend numero seis!

He looks totally unsurprised by my actions!

I left the men to discuss world issues. Like what fly is their favorite.

No questions today, as the post is long enough already!

August 8, 2012. Brush Creek Ranch, Saratoga Wyoming

Good morning! Do you think that you can get to breakfast with these horses blocking the way? Hmm, guess you better tell them to scoot, or you will never get that cup of coffee!

Now that I had my cup of coffee I will tell you about Michael. He had a very interesting life. He was born in Columbia, grew up in Austria (where he got his delightful accent), then moved to Tokyo and Hong Kong. He said that he was an Austrian Count. I’m not sure if he was telling the truth or not, but he played the part well. Five foot ten, with silver hair, he looked like a silver fox. Debonair, courtly and flirtatious, I could understand why he had been married three times. Besides women, he loved to smoke cigars and drink.

He was an accomplished rider and loved to do yoga on horseback. Sitting on the front deck of our cabin it was fun to see him gallop by on the back of a horse! He was leaning back on the horse so that’s his back was parallel to the horse’s back. How he stayed on, I will never know!

He was looking for wife number four, but it was best if she was named Elizabeth. I asked him “Why?”. He lifted the scarf on his neck, and on his nape was the name Elizabeth tattooed across his neck! Good reminder to only have the names of your children tattooed on you, not your wife or girlfriend, as they might change over time!

I mentioned that Michael liked to drink. Remember that fancy bar in the main lodge?This is where Micheal gave us a demonstration on how to taste red wine. What a production! He had an audience of ten other guests as he did his demonstration. He said it was most important to be standing. So we all stood. Then you had to inhale and sniff the wine. Than you had to take a large slurp and swirl and slip it around in your mouth inhaling a large amount of air over the wine without swallowing any of it. It was all very noisy and amusing, and quite sexy. it looked like quite the party trick.

Michael had the hots for the activity bartender and as it was his last night he ordered a bottle of Dom Perignon that he wanted her to share. She had seen his type before and invited those of us at the bar who were learning how to drink wine ala Micheal to share the champagne. Poor Micheal left to go back to his house in San Francisco alone.

Michael was an investment banker, and I keep an eye on the news to see if he has been arrested for a Ponzi scheme! I was very nervous for the ranch that Michael would be good for his bill as he seemed quite sketchy, but as all guests had paid in full before they arrived, the Ranch had nothing to worry about.

I had previously mentioned that wine and liquor had been included in the daily rate. Bruce, the owner did have a locked cabinet of his special wines and liquors. Bruce told me that one night he had an inebriated jerk of a guest who tried to pry open the locked booze, he was caught and had quite the bill!

Steve fished the morning on the North Platte and caught twelve fish. The day started out at a cool temperature of 55 degrees warming to 85 in the early afternoon. In the afternoon Steve took a ride with me. This is his horse saying “I hope this guy continues to fish, he is too heavy for me!”

Do you prefer red or white wine?

Do you add ice to your wine?

Have you ever tried to break into a locked liquor cabinet that wasn’t your own?