My favorite place to hike with the dogs is the old army base in Monterey-Ft Ord. It is thousands of acres of basically nobody and nothing but wilderness. Old trails go through valleys and fields. The coast oak trees are covered with spanish moss. Lupine and grass fields are home to meadowlarks as well as a multitude of birds. I have seen deer, coyote, badger, cottontails and jackrabbits in the area. The dogs can run until their hearts content. As long as they come back off leash it is a very safe area to run. Over the years I have used it as a place of mental healing for me. The quiet, the beauty and the solitude help clear the mind and make tough decisions easier.
When the dogs do something special for me(like obedience titles or championship titles) I try to give back to them. What they love most in life is running free. Moving has made the trip to Ft Ord longer but not impossible.
What the dogs didn't know that day was a new cat was being added to the household. So off we went to let them run themselves into exhaustion before we went to the rescue group to pick out a cat.
They had fun with hours of free running and alittle water play. By the time we got back to the car they had run for miles and were tired. In the right frame of mind to meet and adopt a new cat. More later on the rescue group.