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Fox Tales, July, 2018

Yes, thank you for your conservation efforts, as we coped with the driest rainy season in memory. We got only 5 inches of rain, less than half as much as normal years.




We’ve enjoyed a truly remarkable Spring, with cool temperatures and lots of wildflowers on the trails.

Summers often begin with May Gray and June Gloom, but afterwards they are usually hot, dry, and dusty.  The horses may be a little lazy.  HFF is lucky to be on a mountain with cool breezes directly from the ocean, which keeps our temperatures bearable.

Also, it looks like the fire season is here.  The "West Fire" in Alpine on July 6 burned 400 acres and 18 structures.  We were ready to evacuate if the order came.  We will be updating our emergency call list and sending it out ASAP.


Hot weather means thinking about clothes, for both you and your horse.  For riders, lightweight breathable clothing is recommended, and protection from the sun is a MUST.  For horses, fly masks and other protection will make them a lot happier.




During hot spells, the horses will need to drink more, and we need to make sure they do.  Clean fresh water and salt blocks will help.  Our white plastic paddle-type waterers insure that a thirsty horse gets plenty of cool, fresh, clean water from the underground system.  Check and clean waterers daily.  Some horses may need water buckets too, but remember that buckets need regular cleaning, or the water in them will be warm, stale, dirty, and full of mosquito larvae.  The threat of West Nile Virus is real!


Please remember that we still live in a desert, and water is precious, and we have to conserve water.


Riders need lots of water, too.  Please bring your re-usable bottles of cool water with you. Our refrigerator in the office is for your use.


Welcome Sierra Vacchio

We're excited to share our summer with Sierra.  Sierra will be Haley's assistant this summer, helping Katy and Haley with, well, everything!  In addition to feeding, grooming, and taking care of the horses, you’ll find Sierra teaching beginner lessons, helping with camps, grooming, and exercising horses for us.  She’ll usually be around to offer any help you may need.

Watch Out! 


There are still rattlesnakes and gopher snakes out and about.  They’re hunting mice and other small rodents and doing their part in the ecosystem, controlling the small animal population.  Let’s try to live with the snakes and not bother them.


If you see a snake at HFF, please let the staff, and everyone else, know immediately.  We will see what kind of snake it is and warn people to keep away, if necessary.  General snake rules include: Don't let little children wander unattended.  Don’t step or put your hands where you cannot see.  Don’t get into wood, rocks, or brush (or jumps!) without checking for snakes first.  Wear good shoes and long pants.  Don’t tease, poke, goad, or provoke the wildlife!  Most bites occur when a person tries to kill or move a rattler.


Horse Show Season

         Grace and Hummer at ECHO:  Nice Job!!!

Haley says "Hi all! This year's show season has been off to a great start! The HFF crew attended two ECHO shows in Lakeside this spring. Anna T. rode Little Sure Shot ("Annie") in her debut in 2'3" division and came home with good ribbons on the flat and over fences.


Also in the 2'3" was Sierra Vacchio on Dreamcatcher who came away with reserve champion and had a fabulous equitation over fences course. Anna K. won champion in the crossrails division aboard Big Champ.


Ayden, Grace, Sierra R, and Helena rode in the crossrail division as well and were very competitive in a big field aboard Hummer, Sugar, and Scuba. I was very impressed with all of our rider's good sportsmanship and exceptional care of their horses. 

There next two shows will be September 2nd and 16th. We will post sign up sheets on the bulletin board at the barn. "

Sign-up sheets are posted at the barn for the coming shows.


Summer Camps

July 16-20 Beginner Camp riders will be working on their basic skills and riding techniques.  They’ll also get to experience trail riding, bareback riding, horse feeding, and maybe help out the veterinarian and farrier.  This camp has one space still available.


HFF is offering our popular FUN Week for our current riders and friends, Aug. 6-10. Each day will offer a different activity, such as a Beach Ride, Mountain Ride, Jumping Lesson, Dressage Lesson, or Fun Show.  Riders may sign up for the whole week, or just the days they choose.  More information, with schedule and fees, will come out soon.

Aug. 13-17 Novice Camp still has room for more riders.  These girls will be taking daily lessons in equitation and jumping, plus trail riding, gymkhana, stable management skills and knowledge, and, of course, horsey games!

Camps run from 8:30 – 12:30 each day and cost $375.00 with a $100.00 deposit.


More Summer Activities


We've got some exciting SUMMER activities in the planning stages - Horse Camping trips to the Cuyamacas, Trail Rides around the county, Beach Rides and Picnics, and our annual Campout in the Arena


Adult Ride and Get-Together at the barn!  Last Wednesday of each Summer Month.  Come after work, have a relaxed hack or just hang out with your horse, then join us for munchies and drinks.  See you July 25th!  Potluck and BYOB.  

Horse Camping at Los Vaqueros Group Camp in the Cuyamacas, Aug. 2-6.  We’ve had great fun camping with the horses in past years, and look forward to another three days of riding, hiking, and socializing.  Let me know if you want to join us.  HFF horses are available also.


Sleepover in the Arena, August 25. We’ll start the evening with a Grand Potluck, then bring out our guitars and kazoos, and hang around the campfire. Pitch your tent by the stone wall, or maybe the green oxer.  Sleep under the stars, listen to the munching of happy horses, watch for coyotes, owls, and the Hidden Foxes!  Everyone invited, but young kids need at least one parent in attendance.


Beach ride – sometimes it’s just too hot to work your horse in the arena.  So let’s throw them in the trailer and go to the beach!  We may go to Border Field State Park or maybe Fiesta Island, or maybe both!!  Next trip is planned for Wed, July 18.

PVMR:  If you love trail riding, Pine Valley Mountain Riders would love to welcome you as a member.  PVMR hosts monthly trail rides to the most beautiful equestrian trails in San Diego County.  Often, these rides take place from private ranches not available to the general public, and you can pretty much count on a great pot luck lunch afterwards.  Our PVMR annual horse camping trip at Los Vaqueros in the Cuyamacas is scheduled for August 2-6 and is open to HFF riders.

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