With the promise of salt flats and deserts once we cross the Bolivian border, we opted for a day in the saddle to 'round up' our time in Argentina. Upon arrival at the ranch we were given morning coffee and soon headed out onto the trails.
We shared the morning with a small group and Sergio our guide. I was treated to a mischievous gelding with a wild look in his eyes and a look that said, "go on, make my day." Meanwhile Rose was given an absolute gent of a horse who took a while to get going but had some class.
The surrounding landscape is defined by tobacco farming, with rows of big-leaved plants sweeping off into the distance. We seem to have arrived during the harvest, and every drying house we passed was whirring in earnest. We were told that much of the product from this region is exported to China.
Back to the ranch for a slap-up asado lunch. One word, huge. Fillet steak, morcilla (a kind of black pudding), chorizo, flank steak and short ribs. Some salad may have also been present but I don't think its right to use such foul language.
The afternoon session saw me introduced to a more relaxed and modest mount. Obviously Rose had to document the slight mismatch. I daresay we won't be challenging for the Hennessy Gold Cup come December.
We got some good cantering in and by the end I felt like I had some kind of control over the horse. Its hard not to grin like an idiot when the horse launches off down the track. Rose showed just the right level of encouragement and praise to make me believe she was being sincere.
Thank you to Sayto, in particular to Sergio and Enrique who made us feel so welcome.