Friday, August 12, 2011

Wild, Wet and Wooly Trialing!

After the Bow Classic Trial, we packed up (most of the dogs went with Chris to Mankota) and headed for home. Hanna informed me that she will be going to the next dog trial, and Matthew said he would be coming as well to Shaunavon - either to help set again or just to watch (may be another trialer in the midst!) Warren Mick stayed overnight at our place in Beiseker (sorry Warren for not being the hostess with the mostest). I kind of left Warren to his own devices as I got ready for the trip out to Ontario. We were taken to the airport, and Warren helped me get all my paraphernalia to the checkout counter.

I got Gin and Creed on the plane (Creed's first flight), and collected them at the other end in Ottawa. As I was waiting, who do I run into (almost literally) is Ken and Erin Price, flying in from Dawson Creek. They were to get their rented wheels outside of the airport, so we (being frugal) packed up everything (4 crates, 3 people and all the luggage) into my rental Sierra (good choice) and I dropped them off to get their van. We were supposed to drive out together, but they got lost somewhere, and I got into Kingston about 2 hours later. I had supper with the Hale family - my family away from home. This has turned out to be our mini-family reunion every year - me sacking out at their place, and barely seeing each other since it is all about dog trialing!

Creed and Gin settled in well at the Hale residence. This is the picture of their well kept lawn in Napanee, Ontario. Early next day the trial started, and I there early like everyone else, walking the lines.

These flowers were right on line for the crossdrive. An easy crossdrive to get (not!)

As you can see, the field was full of the flowers, gone was the backstop from the field, so some of the sheep ran quickly back to the setout. Ken and Creed were one of the early runners that day. The young Micheal Gallagher was the judge for the first two days, asking for a shed, pen and single. I ran later with my Creed (no I did not steal the name from Ken) in the afternoon. For being his 2nd open trial, he did pretty good - got a score, not letters!! For not getting a pen and single, I thought a 51 was not too bad.

The next day, I brought out Laura Hale and found this wild bird in the trial field.

Christine Koval christened the bird Isabella that night - after Carol Guy got personal and sexed the bird. No, it wasn't R rated activity.
Later that day, I sat with my class and watched the trial from the sidelines.

Creed was very stressed about the entire thing.

Creed ran pretty good both times, getting a score in the 50's, completing his sheds, but not getting the pens. I think I will bring him back again. Micheal's father Aiden judged the next two days, only wanting a shed and a pen out of the dogs.

I ran Gin (no pictures of that run), and got a 58 the first go round. It remained to be seen what would get into the double lift, and I predicted it to be about 144. A stellar run would have to be done to get into Sunday's festivities.

So that Friday night, I stayed over to watch the movie "Babe" which was going to be shown at dusk outside. Funny, I never did see the movie. There was a large dinner party held outside Viki Kidd's camper, there was a goose involved, a lady (tongue in cheek) named Linda Tesdahl (oh, my burning ears) and a lot of Sangria, and a lot of me telling them to turn down the movie. Robin French had the pleasure of me sleeping on her couch. My allergies acted up (please God, please tell me I am not allergic to Sangria) during the night, and I was up during the middle of the night, scratching away. Robin thought I was one of the dogs, and she whistled to keep them quiet. I thought she was running dogs in her sleep.

The next day was one of the biggest days for spectators (about 2200 people came on Saturday). A horse and wagon was used to bring the spectators from their cars to the action on the field. The action on the field was almost stopped due to nobody telling this driver not to drive on the trial field!

As Saturday progressed, the crowds got bigger, taking in all the action involved.

I ran towards the end of the day, knowing I had to have a 90 plus score to get into the double lift. I set up Gin on the left side, she saw the sheep, and I let her go........and she proceeded to try to crossover 7 feet in front of me (cha-ching, cha-ching goes the points). A quick flank and she went on the correct side.
By that time of the day, the girls were all fed up with the dogs, I don't think Gin helped any on the top, they came down fast, and missed the fetched panels. Maybe the judge wouldn't notice - I think he wore glasses.

The girls ran like they were in the Preakness. The crossdrive was quickly done and they ended up in the bush.

Aiden came down and told me to get my sorry excuse for a dog off the field (the bush was out of bounds). I wonder if I had hugged the post whether I could have stayed longer....I was having soooo much fun with that run!

That night, all runs completed, the famous handlers supper was done. This year's entertainment brought class in the form of opera singers.

I am not sure what they were singing about, but they sure had a set of lungs...approximately a C cup I believe.

And for some class in this blog....enjoy this musical interlude.

So the supper was done, and most people went home to lay there little heads on their pillows. Some of us remained and had a wee little party into the wee little hours. Aiden talked about his 17 hand horse at home, and we found this 17 hand steed in the back (17 hands in term of leprechaun measurements). I had planned to go home to Napanee, but someone had spiked the wine and I was in no shape to drive, however, I was in great party shape. I apologize to all if I said anything out of line...but then, suck it up princesses, if you can't party it up then go home to your mommas!! I am in training for the World Trial you know!!

Amanda started off the Double Lift the next day, and led most of the day with Rozz and a score of 144.

The judges were introduced to the crowd.

The City of Kingston gave the Gallaghers jackets for the occasion.

Besides watching the trial, there were the other sights to see as well, including the Birds of Prey. The police was in full force to keep the crowds in line.

The police dogs were out as well. Bite him George!

And the drug sniffing dog found the marijuana...medical grade of course.
I, being not in the double lift, helped out setting. There was a set that had a lame ewe, and a 20 point shed later, the ewe was replaced and a new one placed in its spot.

Jeanine Van der Mere and Jade (aka Jake) in the shedding ring - the dark horse!!

There wasn't any room on the walls of Amanda's house for pictures anyways!

My hero...still looking for an autograph Jeanine! Come on, throw me a bone...anything!

Well, 2011 Kingston Sheepdog Trial put in the history books again. Another fine time had by all. WestJet, look out, booking again for next year!

Now it is a short work period, my next few days will be vet related, then the next trial will be in Shaunavon and Maple Creek, Saskatchewan (the homeland), and then the Canadian/Western Canadian Championships in Cranbrook. Old Dora the Explorer, you had better be ready!!


  1. Oh how I would love to follow your steps!

  2. Geez, i can't manage to snap even one pic at a trial and you manage to get everything. Good post!

  3. I see you got a win picture of my favorite dog! Yea, Matty!