She will be sorely missed. She was the best dog I have ever had the privilege owning. She was a great companion and the best pheasant dog I have ever seen. She hunted tirelessly and when I guided hunts people would argue over who got to hunt with Splash. She always knew where the birds were. She was special. She was one of a kind.
I do not know who wrote this but my Dad framed it for me a few years ago. It explains why I will always have a dog. A Blackdog.
Are You This Good? If you can start the day without caffeine, If you can get going without pep pills, If you can always be cheerful, ignoring aches and pains, If you can resist complaining and boring people with your troubles, If you can eat the same food every day and be grateful for it, If you can understand when your loved ones are too busy to give you any time, If you can forgive a friend's lack of consideration, If you can overlook it when those you love take it out on you when, through no fault of your own, something goes wrong, If you can take criticism and blame without resentment, If you can ignore a friend's limited education and never correct him, If you can resist treating a rich friend better than a poor friend, If you can face the world without lies and deceit, If you can conquer tension without medical help, If you can relax without liquor, If you can sleep without the aid of drugs, If you can honestly say that deep in your heart you have no prejudice against creed or color, religion or politics, THEN, my friend, you're almost as good as your dog!
My field trial dog is not doing very well. She is 13 years old which is very old for a field trial dog. She is the best dog I have ever owned and I have had quite a few. She has 2 shoe boxes full of ribbons that she won over the years. She won a couple of trials which for an amateur like me is a very big deal. Over the years she ran miles and miles chasing birds and competing in trials. The running took it's toll. Most people have no idea what a trial is so the video below shows a blind retrieve. Basically a bird is placed at a very long distance and there are obstacles between the dog and the bird. The dog does not know where the bird is and does not get to see where the bird is placed. The idea is to line your dog up and get your dog to run a straight line to the bird. If the dog goes off line right or left you stop the dog with a whistle and then cast the dog with your arms to get the dog back on line. Both dogs in this video are in the hall of fame. The first dog is from the same kennel as Splash.
It will not be long now. I am trying to prepare the kids. My daughter is having a very difficult time with the reality that Splash will not be with us much longer. It is going to kill me and be very difficult on Susan. We have spent so many hours with her. I know the humane decision needs to be made I am just having a hard time making that decision. The cold weather wreaks havoc on her joints and she only moves out of her bed to eat and go outside. Going outside only lasts for a minute then she is back in bed. I do not think she has been out of her bed for more than 15 minutes during any day in the past month. The drugs are just not getting it done.
Sunday I took a little ride on Jamie's Mistress. She is a bit rough and getting a bit of a face lift. At the top of Clark's they have put in a rock garden. Which is a cool feature. I think it will keep people riding horses from venturing down the trail. The actual rock garden is probably 8 to 10 feet long and easily rideable today.A little lower I ran into the Sweco. The thing is much bigger than I had expected. Joe was working on one of the switch backs and has added a bunch of jumps and bumps on the side of the trail. The upper section of phase 1 is not exactly rideable right now but with a little work it will be shortly. I had not ridden the trail in 3 weeks and it is in much better condition now than the last time I ventured my way down.
Everything below about the top third of phase 1 is rideable and I did two laps just to get a feel for the trail. I rode down and they had started cutting in phase 3 so I took a little hike a bike and followed the trail as far as it is cut. It is going to be cool. I had no idea that we could have a trail this long in Corner Canyon. Eventually I linked in to Ghost Falls and went home. I spent over 2 hours spinning out the tailgate party. Good time even if I about lost it on the Marbles.
Football season kills me. I have issues, some repressed and some very out in the open. I love this time of year. The tradition, the pageantry, the cool weather, the time spent with friends. Not to mention the food. Glorious food. Ribs, pulled pork sandwiches, chili, bratwurst, burgers 7 layer dip, cheese, crackers, pretzels and beer. Well all that great food has come back and bit me on my ever changing ass. I lost 22 lbs in about 30 days. I nearly lost my mind and then I went to Vegas and the eating started. Competitive eating. Not just I over indulging a little we are talking Fat Bastard chewing on a turkey leg in bed eating. I have gained back 20 lbs in under a month. This has to be a record. My name should be on a plack. Anyhow I know any chances of dieting are shot until the Monday after the byu Utah game. There are 4 games left. Two home games with tailgate parties and two parities where we will watch the game. Then there is Thanksgiving. And at Thanksgiving we have pie. Pumpkin pie and banana creme pie.
So here is the deal. I need something grand, something huge to stay motivated, to keep me on track and more than anything to keep me on the bike. So here goes. I am going to try to get into Leadville next year. If Leadville falls through then I will go and do the Butte 100. I will also probably try to do the PC Point 2 point. So I am sure someone just spit coffee all over the computer. How the hell is this fat bastard going to drag his sorry ass 100 miles on a mtn bike? Good question. As I see it I need to lose 60 or more lbs between now and August. I am not exactly sure how the hell I am going to do this but you can bet I will spend some time with a dietitian and this time one that understands riding a bike while dieting. I will also probably find a cycling coach. Again one that has worked with fat mo fo's and can keep me from burning out.
So that is the plan. By the way if you think I have issues check out this dude. I think he drank the whole thing. Whatever that was. Kids let this be a lesson. Mullets and alcohol do not mix.