Amanda: Soldier Hollow, Day One
Everyone congregated for the much anticipated handlers meeting at Soldier Hollow. Same old same old. The remarkable temperature differences between morning and afternoon load the running order—nearly freezing in the morning and ninety in the afternoon. Coupled with the altitude, a very challenging trial.
The sheep were thoroughbreds–long legged fit, racing machines. Big efficient strides. Radar on for the uninspiring dog. They have a story to tell about every dog they encounter. Such a joy to run on range finewools.
Bev, Barbara, and I drove to the Zermatt, a transplanted Swiss Hotel in Midway, for pastries, well worth a drive. The Swiss would have been proud of the croissants, Danish ,and sweets for later in the day, Utah notwithstanding.
The first two runners of the day led the running–Bill Berhow with his veteran, Coal, and followed in order and points by Angie Coker-Sells and Soot–a clean flanking, efficient bitch, no nonsense. Afterwards, the running was difficult, with retires and grips to DQ abounding. In their first appearance at Soldier Hollow, Mary Minor and Feist had a great start, which wound down to a grip in the last portion of the cross drive. Barbara Ray had a respectable run around with Stella to clock out in the ring. The running was wonderfully informative, so intriguing to watch.
Howell ran well around the course, only to have his handler lose her mind in the shedding ring–sheep out of the ring. I had two full minutes to pen and could not manage it, not after bungling the shed so successfully, putting the sheep on edge. Still his score held up to lead the day.