Monday, June 20, 2016

MULE DAYS 2016 - SATURDAY

Saturday is Parade Day in Bishop. We use the morning and sometimes part of the afternoon to escape the town and relax with a hike in the mountains. This is welcomed by Tina and Justin as Ohio has nothing like this ----

The Sierras from the White Mountains


This year I took Justin and Tina to the White Mountains which sit East of Bishop. Atop the mountains is the Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest. This was their first visit to this wonderful place. The drive from Bishop is about 1 hour each way. 





Tina studying the structure of the tree

Bristlecone and Landscape


These ancient trees have a gnarled and stunted appearance, especially those found at high altitudes, and have reddish-brown bark with deep fissures. As the tree ages, much of its vascular cambium layer may die. In very old specimens, often only a narrow strip of living tissue connects the roots to a handful of live branches. The trees have been dated to be several thousand years old with Methuselah being over 4800 plus years old. Another tree has recently been dated as over 5,065 years  old. For their protection neither of these ancient trees are identified for public scrutiny. These trees live and survive in the harsh climate of over 9000 foot elevation. They generally don't form closed canopies, usually covering only 15-50%.




Gnarly!


We returned to Bishop in the middle of the afternoon. I went off to see the Americana Class of wagons. These are authentic wagons which have been restored to their original design, and the driver and any passenger has to be dressed in attire of the era. 




Another fun event in the afternoon is “Coon Jumping”. In this event a mule is brought to a gate and must jump over it starting from a stand close to the gate. As the competition progresses the gate is raised higher and higher. I have seen it where the gate is about four feet above the ground and the mule clears it cleanly. 


The evening program started with a grand entrance and parade of flags carried by a number of riders. The flags represent the various states present at the Mule Days this year. Then there was the parade of the flags  -



Once again they had the Justin Boot Race and the following shows results of the chaos.

Where is my shoe?
The two videos culminate this entry. The first is a chariot race between two chariots, one driven by the husband and the second by the wife.

video


The second video is a demo of Roman stye riding where the rider rides bare back while driving six beautiful Percheron draft horses.  

video


Hope you enjoyed the tour of fun and frolicking at Mule Days 2016.

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