Wednesday, September 23, 2015

The Search - Day One

Let me take you on a sad journey, the search for an abandoned, abused sweetheart of a dog. This dog had been starved for the past several weeks, eating only the bits of bread, scraps, and dog treats that neighbors threw it. The owner had totally stopped feeding it, even though one of the neighbors had given him a 50 bag of dog kibble. The poor skeletonized animal was led up this path, then on through rough pastures, struggling for an hour (the owner said) before bring chased away into the tall certain death.

I found out about this 6 to 18 hours after the dog had been abandoned. It was impossible to pin down the owner as to exactly when he took the dog into the hills. But he did show us the ranch roads that he started up and gave us descriptions of where he took the dog. Bob and I, being fueled by anger, immediately trekked off in search of the dog. 

Contacting the manager for this section on Naalehu Ranch, we eventually got permission to hike the area. Regretfully the main gate lock would not open, so parking the truck, we started up on foot. This ranch is over 10,000 acres, quite an expanse. We had never been on it before, but with a little help from GPS, we were never in danger of being lost. 

Due to the recent rains, almost all the ranch roads were heavily pictured above. My short legs found them to be challenging, to say the least. It angered me to think that the owner dragged that poor dog up through these roads.....a forced march to death. 

Bob and I took slightly separate paths hoping to increase our chances for success. Luckily the phones and iPad worked well up on these hills because we were able to keep in touch of each other's progress. 

One thing that ranches have a lot of are gates. I climbed over plenty! And each one was different...what the hey? For real.....not one was anything like another. I stopped atop this one to snap a picture looking down.

The cows up here have some fantastic scenic views. Expansive green acres. Gorgeous views looking down on the plain. This is 100% cow country, not a human around. All those nasty humans scuttle about down in the dark areas far, far away. 

I could have taken dozens of scenic photos up here. If it wasn't that I was on a sad mission, I would have loved this hike. Tall grass often over our heads, to be sure, but very pretty. 

Bob and I struggled up hills, across pastures, over gates looking for the locations that the owner described. I never came upon them on my route, but a Bob did. After three difficult hours he located a muddy section with dog prints and the water trough mentioned by the owner. But sadly, no dog. By this time it was getting late and raining lightly. We both decided to turn down the hill in order to get back to the truck before dusk. With a lack of flashlights, that was imperative. 

Soaked, very tired, hungry, and thirsty we retreated. Tomorrow morning we would return to try again. 

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