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Discussion Starter #21
What are some good restaurants where you can access via trail and tie up at? I've heard there's a place off the Sammamish river trail. I've seen people tie up at the Starbucks on Novelty Hill Rd near the Redmond Ridge trails but that place isn't very accommodating for horses but people do it anyway.
 

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I'm from Bellingham! Way up North.

We have beautiful trails up here at Mt. Baker.
Unfortunately, I too have no trailer.

I've heard of a restaurant with a viewing window and they do events in there for people to watch. I can't remember the name though :(
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Hi Apollo! I'm from Bellingham too! Rhodes River Ranch is the barn with the restaurant. It is a gorgeous facility and if Bonnie is still the chef the food is excellent!
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They sometimes have a clinc by this Portuguese rider, who has a stable in Maine now . Blanking on his name, but he is a very interesting dressage clinician, so if you have a chance, go see him. "Vitor".
 

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Discussion Starter #27
Just heard from the Cle Elum ranger district that there is a real possibility of opening some of the back country trails as soon as April due to the lack of snow. It depends on how March plays out
 

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At 60 degrees in February, I'd say we haven't had a winter! I'm wondering if we're in for a hot summer or a cool one - I'm hoping a bad winter won't be followed up by a bad summer, but at least that would make fires and draught less likely. We sure don't need anything driving hay prices up more than they already are.

But who knows, it's WA so we could have a random snow storm (for us) or freeze in March or April despite having such a warm winter so far.
 

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At 60 degrees in February, I'd say we haven't had a winter! I'm wondering if we're in for a hot summer or a cool one - I'm hoping a bad winter won't be followed up by a bad summer, but at least that would make fires and draught less likely. We sure don't need anything driving hay prices up more than they already are.

But who knows, it's WA so we could have a random snow storm (for us) or freeze in March or April despite having such a warm winter so far.
Our weather over here in eastern WA has been a joke for winter as well!
It drives me batty when horse people say they are loving it... have they not considered the hay prices come this summer?! We have been here 3 years almost, and hay has gone up every year that we have bought it. :(
And I also don't want to see any fires like last year. :(
 

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We already seem to have higher hay prices than most of the country and they go up each year. This has been the first year I have actually purchased hay rather and being on full board that includes hay and it sure has opened my eyes. That and being on this forum where I learned that $19 a bale for orchard is considered highway robbery in most of the country...

I've also missed being about to go snow shoeing this year. I will put up with the rain and the cold as long as there is snow in the mountains and a nice spring/summer on the way.
 

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Discussion Starter #32
Yeah, I can't say I'm happy about the lack of snow. I usually spend all winter playing in the snow. So far I've only been out snowmobiling/snowbiking 6 times and the snow was never deep enough to ride off-trail. Last year it was almost as bad but then in Febuary we had a huge dump that saved the season.
 

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Everything here is expensive! I am always shocked to hear members from other places in the US speak about such and such a price as "high", when to me it's a steal!

why gasoline is pricey here is a real mystery. we have that refinery at Cherry Point, two hours away from Seattle. so, why do WE pay 20% more than the rest of the nation?
 

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I wonder about hay as well, why is it so high when it's grown here in the state?!

At least there are places around WA where land is cheaper (though not as cheap as lots of other states) but the area you, I and Mr. Withers live in Tiny, is not it!

That's one thing I miss about living down in the Enumclaw area, full care board usually tops at $400 and you can find good pasture board for way less.
 

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I wonder about hay as well, why is it so high when it's grown here in the state?!

At least there are places around WA where land is cheaper (though not as cheap as lots of other states) but the area you, I and Mr. Withers live in Tiny, is not it!

That's one thing I miss about living down in the Enumclaw area, full care board usually tops at $400 and you can find good pasture board for way less.
From what I understand at least for here in eastern WA... a good majority of our hay gets shipped overseas to Japan and the nearbys. So it is hard for us to compete with what they will buy it for. I have been told a lot of the big farmrs hay just to sell it overseas. Here locally we have the Hutterites who produce top quality hays... but I am told it mostly goes overseas. My horses hate orchard, and I tend to not feed alfalfa, so I get another local to me hay (6 miles down the road local, lol) ... and I still spend $200 a ton for non-orchard, timothy or alfalfa non-irrigated hay!!
 

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Yeah, I can't say I'm happy about the lack of snow. I usually spend all winter playing in the snow. So far I've only been out snowmobiling/snowbiking 6 times and the snow was never deep enough to ride off-trail. Last year it was almost as bad but then in Febuary we had a huge dump that saved the season.
6 times is 6 more times than we had enough snow to do squat with, mrwithers! Where in western WA are you again? I am not native WA and associate all western/coastal WA as having less snow than we do here in rural Spokane... guess I was wrong. :)
Last year it was the same for us here too- not enough of a good winter. But then we got a massive melt off followed by a cold freeze and my pastures became ice rinks. The horses had to be carefully coaxed out so they could live in our yard for a while, as it was the only flat, unfrozen land we really had.
 

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Discussion Starter #37
6 times is 6 more times than we had enough snow to do squat with, mrwithers! Where in western WA are you again? I am not native WA and associate all western/coastal WA as having less snow than we do here in rural Spokane... guess I was wrong. :)
Last year it was the same for us here too- not enough of a good winter. But then we got a massive melt off followed by a cold freeze and my pastures became ice rinks. The horses had to be carefully coaxed out so they could live in our yard for a while, as it was the only flat, unfrozen land we really had.
We had snow as low as 500ft in November near Redmond. I went up near Stevens Pass to ride on 11/23. Then made a couple of trips up to Gallagher from Salmon La Sac near sno park near Cle Elum. There was actually enough snow up at 6k feet then but now it's melted. I made a few trips to Stampede Pass off i90 but the roads were icy with bare spots.

Here's the top at Stampede Pass ~4200ft in early January with only about 6" of snow. Usually 3-4ft of snow up there by then
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We had snow as low as 500ft in November near Redmond. I went up near Stevens Pass to ride on 11/23. Then made a couple of trips up to Gallagher from Salmon La Sac near sno park near Cle Elum. There was actually enough snow up at 6k feet then but now it's melted. I made a few trips to Stampede Pass off i90 but the roads were icy with bare spots.

Here's the top at Stampede Pass ~4200ft in early January with only about 6" of snow. Usually 3-4ft of snow up there by then
View attachment 598202
That is a cool pic! Makes me think we shoulda went farther west when we moved here! :p
 

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Discussion Starter #39
Went for a ride at Soaring Eagle park in Sammaish this morning and the conditions were epic. Mostly dry and sunny through the bare trees. However... getting there wasn't so easy. I prepped everything the day before and checked tire pressures. Got up at 6am and it was freezing so when I went to extend the divider to load my horse it was frozen stuck. Luckily I have a spare trailer ball and tongue which I smashed into it as hard as I could until it finally became unstuck. So far so good. No major problems. Then turning onto i90 from 405 the wheel well on the trailer somehow bounces and breaks one of the sheetmetal screws holding it on. It bounces and catches the tire which explodes and is immediately noticeable so I pull over. I'm on that section of i90 with a solid wall and only maybe a foot or two for me to get in to change the tire. I manage to change the tire and remove the twisted wreckage of the wheel well in 15 minutes. Another 15 minutes to limp the trailer to a gas station and fill the spare which was low. Stressful day but a good relaxing ride to even it out.

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A bunch of horsey people I know trailered to bridle trails today.
 
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