Category Archives: People and Places

A recent story from H. Alan Day (author: THE HORSE LOVER)






A short missive from H. Alan Day, author of THE HORSE LOVER,  A Cowboy’s Quest to Save the Wild Mustangs (amazing read…).  Click here to go to the original version.

CLICK IMAGE TO go to original story

   I was flying my Cessna 210 on an instrument flight plan eighteen thousand feet above the Colorado plains. Despite the stratus clouds, it was smooth flying on a route that I had traveled many times. The little bird had been airborne an hour and half hours, having taken off from Valentine, Nebraska and expected to land at Lazy B in another two and half hours.

Suddenly, there was a tremendous BANG! In an instant, I went from sedentary to red-alert pilot. The plane was vibrating and rattling so violently I thought the motor might detach. Instinctively, I pulled power and trimmed for maximum glide. The motor idled, the hammering decreased to a knock, and the plane began gliding through thin air.

Without hesitation, I turned toward La Junta. It was the closest paved airstrip and sixteen miles away. It didn’t have a control tower. Pilots called in and if someone were in the office, that person would answer. No one answered when I called, which meant that no one would be clearing the one runway and setting up for an emergency landing. I was on my own. It’s amazing how fast palms get sweaty.

While flying, I made it a policy to look at the terrain below and keep my eye out for a straight road or flat area that I could land on if something went wrong. Well, something was wrong. I broke out of the clouds and began visually searching for La Junta. There it was in front of me. I was pretty sure that I could get there, but I started to look for alternate places to land in case I fell short.

               This was my fourth plane since learning to fly. I had enough experience to know that the motor had blown a piston. The motor could still run on five pistons, but I was reluctant to give it power, fearing the plane would shake to pieces. At that moment, altitude was my best friend. The higher you are in a plane, the farther you can glide and the more time you have to make decisions, to try to restart the engine, or to radio someone on the ground.

               I listened to the propeller turning the motor and making the plane slightly vibrate. I listened to the wind whistling. I scanned the land beneath me. And I concentrated on my job, which was to maintain maximum glide and stay calm.

As it turned out, I arrived with too much altitude and had to circle the airstrip once. I could have flown another two miles. The landing was routine, but then I needed to get off the runway so other planes could use it. I gave the motor a little power and it grudgingly got me to the operations office.

                I jumped out of the plane, relieved to feel terra firma beneath my feet. I found some coffee, sat down at a table, and replayed what had happened. I hadn’t panicked. I hadn’t even imagined crashing. I did what I needed to do as a pilot. Here I was, safe and sound. And that’s when I started to shake as much as the plane.


Riding Warehouse
Your purchase with Riding Warehouse through this link helps the Bucket Fund!


Supporting The Bucket Fund through Amazon Smile
Please choose HORSE AND MAN, INC when you shop via Amazon Smile through this link.



HORSE AND MAN is a blog in growth... if you like this, please pass it around!



The Amazing Australian Kelpie and video… they stand perfectly still!






I had an amazing dog who was at least half Australian Kelpie (but that half took over his soul).  You may remember him.  His name was Dexter.

Dexter spoke English, I swear.  He understood everything.  He also could unlock any door and jump ANY fence.  He was an escape artist with an internal clock and GPS which allowed him to always come home by dinner.  In his later life as an escape artist, he would just stop if he got tired of roaming… and whomever found  him would call the number on his collar and I’d show  up to collect him.

Dex was how we met most of our neighbors in Grass Valley!  (Please don’t hammer us for not being able to keep him in.  It was impossible.  We fretted over him constantly.  It wasn’t until he was gone that I realized how many maneuvers I did every day to make sure he stayed home.

Dex never hurt anyone or was hurt.  Yes, we had an invisible fence, yes we had a 6′ cyclone kennel, yes he had a shock collar, yes he went to a special trainer… in the end, Dex was on a long lead atop a shady hill, which he loved.  The problem with Dex, as most trainers told us, was the he was ‘a Kelpie’.  Basically… they would all sigh and say that this would be the most incredibly amazing and incredibly frustrating dog I would own.

They were right.

Dexter lived to a ripe old age of 13.5 and is dearly missed.  He was an amazing dog with an indisputable charm –  and I credit that to his Australian Kelpie self.

This week, a video surfaced of 3 Australian Kelpies.  This video so typified Dexter.  I wanted to share.

WATCH THIS VIDEO – A PERFECT ILLUSTRATION OF KELPIES!

Click image to watch amazing video!

PICS OF DEX…

Some of you may remember Dexter.  He passed when we lived in Grass Valley.  He lived to be 13.5.  Such a great, if not frustrating, dog.  He is so missed.

Dex as a pup. He was always so confident. I found him at a shelter when we all lived in Oregon. He had a littermate and I had contemplated getting them both. I cannot imagine if I had… ai yai yai!

As a puppy in our Oregon house.  Who could resist that face.  One ear up,

A very mature Dex, with his huge smile. Always up to something…

Old man Dexter. Here he is in Grass Valley. As you can see, he wore many collars. All trying to keep him home. A lost cause. He wandered his whole life.


Riding Warehouse
Your purchase with Riding Warehouse through this link helps the Bucket Fund!


Supporting The Bucket Fund through Amazon Smile
Please choose HORSE AND MAN, INC when you shop via Amazon Smile through this link.



HORSE AND MAN is a blog in growth... if you like this, please pass it around!