It all started when I decided to surprise John for our anniversary. I asked his boss for the time off and to please keep it a secret, which he did! The day before I was to "kidnap" John I decorated his truck at work with those helium balloons that say "I Love You" with the big smiling face and the lips on it. Needless to say when he came out to his truck everyone was standing around to give him a bad time and to ask what was so special. John didn't have a clue, said no it wasn't his birthday and his anniversary was a couple of weeks away so he couldn't think what I was up to! The next morning the kidnapping plan went into effect....we stayed the night in Holbrook, Arizona and I told him what I had planned, a cattle round up and drive in the mountains of New Mexico (he didn't really believe me, well ok, I also told him I was taking him to the mountains so he could go into a stop smoking clinic!)

The Pearson Ranch is located in southwestern New Mexico in the Mangus Mountains, surrounded by the Apache National Forest. At an elevation of 7,820 feet at the ranch house it is home to elk, antelope, black bear, mule deer, mountain lion, bobcat and turkeys. The ranch has an excess of 8,720 acres to run cattle on. I rode BLONDY, a palomino quarter and John rode CHIEF, a sorrel overo that he really wanted to bring home.

There were endless old logging roads with miles and miles of trails through forests of juniper, oak and ponderosa pine. And yes I was on the side of some of those mountains slipping and sliding and trusting my horse. Ok, maybe once I might have cussed John out (why I don't know because he didn't have anything to do with planning this trip) and Marvin (just because he owned the place seemed like a good reason to me as we were coming straight down the hillside).It was one of the best times I have ever had on a horse!

The highlight of our roundup was the fact that John & Marvin (owner) were able to round up an angus bull that had evaded capture for 2 years! He was wild and didn't want to be brought in.

John got totally spoiled with having fresh coffee in the morning and being served such great meals! I have to remember to write and get the receipe for some of the dishes. You could eat elk steaks, but if you know me you know I stuck with the beef steaks and not having my food all mixed up!

We would love to go back again, but with my working a 6 day 10 hour work week PLUS my horses, I'm not sure when a good time would be.....but someday we will go back.....for more information be sure and visit their website at www.pearson-ranch.com

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