Howdy Chuckwagon Friends,

We headed out on the road north to Dawson Creek, BC on Tuesday at 7:30 AM.  We had a seven hour drive ahead of us.  My swamper with me in the Freightliner was non other than Coy, our seven-year old grandson.


Hmmmmm What Next?

He keeps me busy.  We play a game called “Eye Spy with my Little Eye”, he draws pictures, makes things, reads books and sometimes watches a movie.  We got to giggling about something yesterday and we couldn’t stop laughing.  Oh he brightens my day.

Part of our crew arrived into Dawson Creek around 4 PM .  Rick however, had to make a pit stop at the scales on the BC side of things.  Well, he was there a little more than he wanted to be.  He rolled in with a tire that had blown only  fifteen minutes before arrival.  And I guess it really doesn’t help when you accidentally left your wallet sitting in your dirty jeans pocket back at home, when your wife asked you if you emptied all your pockets before throwing them into the washer to be cleaned.   On the bright side of things, everything in his wallet will be free from germs from the laundry detergent we use, and the gentleman at the scales didn’t keep him too long as we had livestock in the liner.  We did however have to purchase some kind of permits for the truck.  The wallet is being sent up north with someone who just happens to be coming this way.  And the tire repairman will be showing up today to replace the old one with a new one.

Ho Hum……….just another day on the road of a Chuckwagon Driver.


The Bulldoggers

As we travel down the road, there are so many people who contribute to our success.  Jim and Jo have done just that for us this summer.  We so appreciate what they have done for us.  Jim himself is a racer of sorts.  He drag races a Funny Car.  But I don’t think it’s a funny car at all.  It’s a “BAD ASS” great looking blue car called “The Bulldogger.”


The Bulldogger

Rick has sat in this car, but has yet to take if for a spin.  Jim and Rick a very much alike in life.  The faster, the better and lots of it.  We have a lot of laughs when we get together and we look forward to our next meeting down the road in Rocky Mountain House.


Your It!

Our crew likes to some have some fun as we go along.  One of the things that goes on in camp is touching the nose when a single job needs to get done, say the feeding of  the morning oats.  Whomever is the last to touch their nose, is the lucky winner to do the job.  I guess it depends on what the job is, that determines if you are lucky or not.  I’m thinking Karina has been the one to lose the most in this little game.  Although I think the boys set her up most of the time.  As a matter of fact…….I know they do.


Morning Breakfast

This morning we were treated to a big box of coffee from Tim Hortons and breakfast burritos and donuts from our friends and followers, Don and Marlene.  They contacted us yesterday with the news of stopping in for a visit.  What a wonderful gesture we so much enjoyed.


One on One

They brought along their granddaughter to meet us and the horses.  I think she really liked meeting the horses just a little bit more than us.  Cowboy was enjoying all the attention.


Group Photo

Our 2nd outfit in the first heat was comprised of two of our horses King and Ranger, and two of Chanse Vigen’s, Alimo and Wilson.  We used Air and Chad Harden’s Cadilac for the outriding horses.  The team started hard and Rick was able to get out to the track first to get the rail position.


Rick ran a 1:16.40, but was assessed a 1 second penalty for a late outrider.  He was really close to being there, but not close enough.  He was happy how they all worked tonight.


Turning the Bottom


On our main hook tonight, coming off the one barrel in heat 8, was Spirit on the Left Lead, Sporty on the Right.  Spin on the Left Wheel and Cowboy on the Right.  Chance Flad held leaders with Ed, and Chad Cosgrave threw stove with Stadium.   The team started hard and charged around the barrels.  Rick got them onto the track, just behind John Walters and followed along coming 2nd in the heat posting a time of 1:15.42.  Good for 4th on the day.


A First Time to the Races

Our mini chuckwagon giveaway was given to Kimberely, a gal that made her first  trip to the Chuckwagon races live.  Over the years she has always watched on TV or listened to the radio.  It was a thrill she said to see it so up close and personal.


Until Tomorrow

From the Travelin Trailer

Sue, with Rick and “Team 23”

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P.S.  Everyone wants happiness.  No one wants pain.  But you can’t have a rainbow without a little rain.


Strathmore Chuckwagon Races Day 4

Howdy Chuckwagon Friends

Holiday Monday and the day started very busy with chores and continued on with packing up to leave immediately for home after the races.  When we all pitch in it really doesn’t take too long to get on the road.  There is a place for everything.



Candice, we call our adopted daughter, has been coming to help us for many years now.  As she has now moved into adulthood with her engineer degree, her time spent with us has diminished.  Yet when she can, she always stops in and tends to do whatever needs to be done.  She’s a great help in the horse care department.  Oh,  and running to get Booster Juices’s especially for Rick.



Along with Candice, comes her companion dogs.  The newest one to her family is Fawkes.  Candice is an amazing dog trainer who has taken her previous dogs to agility championship titles.  This one will be no different I’m sure.   Training and persistence in any sport will take you to the top.  It’s only a matter of time.


Some Brand New Fans

While in Strathmore, Rick’s cousin Teresa popped in for a visit while attending the races.  She brought along with her some friends who were first timers to the event.  They have never seen such a thing.  The best part was, that they got to come back to the barn and meet the horses, Rick and see first hand how the whole operation runs.  They were quite impressed.  And we were thrilled to give them a tour and share our day to day life on the road. Fans for life!


A View From the Backstretch

In between heats, the crew would run up to the fence and watch 3 races before it was time to hook the last outfit.  I think most times there was a little betting going on.


On the Run

The 2nd outfit in the first heat was comprised up of Louie on the Left Lead, Ranger on the Right.  LA, Logan Gorsts horse on the Left Wheel and King on the Right Wheel.  Chance Flad held leaders with Chad Harden’s Cadilac and Casey Knight threw the stove with our horse Air.


Taking the Lead for Home

We landed a 13th on the day with the outfit and 20th in the show.  Fairly good for having a whole mix of horses throughout the 4 days of racing.  A huge thank you to Don Adams of Ja-Co Welding for the sponsorship.  Much appreciated.


Casey Knight

Casey is one of the top outriders in the association.  He is quite the all around athlete.  During the Chuckwagon  season, he takes time and dons his hockey equipment and stays conditioned playing games on the ice during down days.  He’s a quiet one, doesn’t care for a lot of recognition, and you can always count on him to get the job done right.


Side by Side

The last hook of the day, was Nickle on the Left Lead, Speedy on the Right.  Jim on the Left Wheel and Law on the Right.  Dustin Gorst held leaders with Ed, and Mad Dog, (Ryan McNeil) threw stove with Stadium.   We were so looking forward to a speedy “CLEAN” run after the last 3 days of penalties.  Well, Rick pulled into the barrels awaiting the horn to sound.  He waited, and waited and waited.  Not sure why the horn didn’t blow when all the wagons were set.  So while we waited to long in the barrels, the horses were getting ansy, and managed to knock the barrel over before the horn went.  So frustrating.  Another 5 seconds worth.  It’s shows such as this, where you just want to pack up and get to the next venue and start fresh and clean again.  Thanks to Terra HDD for the sponsorhip in Strathmore.


Making Friends

It was good to get home for a short bit after Strathmore.  We packed up and headed out of town in short order right after the races.  We arrived safely into Wetaskiwin around 8PM.   Upon our arrival at the Ranch, were our 2 grandkids Coy and Ryker along with our girls Amy and Kaylee,  and our son Cody.  Was good to see them all even if it was only for a short bit.

I thought about finishing up my blog that night, but sleep was way more tempting.  Our heads hit the pillow by 10 PM.  I don’t remember the last time I got to bed at that hour.  It was a very good decision.

From the Travelin Trailer

Sue, with Rick and “Team 23”

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P.S.  Mental toughness is when you can find fuel in an empty tank.