The Big One–AKC Silverado Pawso Robles

The Terv Club Silverado trial is one of the bigger deals down this way each year. Its a whopping four days long and pretty much every one comes out of the woodwork for this gig, at least for Saturday Sunday. The site is way out in the boondocks yet simultaneously not-that-far from civilization, which makes it practically perfect. It is scenic and tree-filled and grassy. Not a bit of mud or dust or road noise to be found. Site details include a decrepit ferris wheel and a brackish pond. My kind of spot.* On Saturday, there were 591 runs. Which is A lot. I think. This was a really fun trial for us for lots of reasons, and I may even claim it was the most fun I have had at a trial yet.

There was lots of moral support with many of my co-workers and classmates all there running as well. Some of the more savvy and experienced people in our group showed up first thing for set-up on Thursday and claimed the prime spot for our communal crating camp out area. We had the best view in the house, perched above both rings and right at the main entrance–hooray for easy set up and tear down! (Though I was admittedly slightly envious of the cart-pulling Staffy I saw hauling ass up the hill and out the entrance on Sunday afternoon, pulling all of her gear out to the car for her mom, even after running agility.) There was lots of cheering and group walking and offerings to video and course analytics galore. Not to mention running into many of the other nice agility people I have gotten to know from club, seminars, San Diego classes and even online. It was pretty cool to not feel so adrift for a change. Maybe I have finally found some of those agility friends I was looking for.

Overall we did well. We went 2 for 4 Q’s with a scratch on Saturday afternoon when FAST was looking to run after 5pm. We got a semi-questionable Q in our Excellent A Standard run on Saturday. Forest ran lovely, but if you watch the video, he doesnt look even close to hitting his Aframe contact. Yet, the judge didnt call it, so… ??? What do you do? Our JWW that afternoon resulted in me being so focused on front crossings ahead that I literally was running without my dog. Dont ask.

On Sunday, we had a teeter issue in Standard and got whistled off, whoops, but our Open JWW went far better and we nailed it, getting our 2nd of 3 Open JWW Qs. Finally!!! As per the last few trials, I am very happy with Forest and how great he was. This was a pretty crazy trial with distractions galore and he was on-on-on like a champ. We just need to do some extra teeter training and work on our weave exits (he seems to have developed a habit of blasting straight out of the weaves and not looking for me–that may be my use of Robot coming back to bite me in the ass. But, nothing we cant fix). And lots more contacts, as usual.

Other than my little favorite dog’s awesomeness, the highlight of the weekend was getting to have dinner with and an agility history lesson from Rachel Sanders. I was expecting a big group and it ended up just being three of us. She is nothing short of a complete character and had me snorting beer out my nose more than once. She is not only a fierce agility lady, but quite sharp and hilarious as well. I learn so much from her, whether in a formal teaching venue or otherwise. Not to mention it was cool to get a peek into the big leagues of agility land. So not even in the realm of my understanding but fun nevertheless.

Next trial as of now is in April, USDAA, so we’ll be taking a bit of a break. Though I also feel like I should keep rolling while its going well… I dunno. Ready for a weekend at home to catch up on all the not fun stuff like cleaning and organizing and getting back to people I havent emailed back for weeks or more… Ugh, life gets in the way of agility.

___

*I had no idea until I arrived at the site that I had been to a festival concert many, many moons ago there. I dont remember who played, probably punk and alternative-type bands, but I do remember overflowing porta-potties and gridlock traffic trying to get out of there… Why is it always the worst and most disgusting things we remember and not the good stuff?

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