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Zora with her pretty purple NATCH ribbon

This past weekend the dogs and I traveled with a friend (hubby had to work) to Sugar Bush Farm in NY where we spent a glorious weekend at the NAE NADAC trial.  This site is amazing and lovely.  Then again any place that reminds me of my great aunt’s sheep farm in the mountains of New Hampshire is my favorite place.  I have a conditioned happy response from the time we spent on Windy Hill when I was a kid.  It’s like I just instantly relax, smile and breathe.  It was lovely.

It was additionally great to catch up with my friend, Ben.  When I was teenager, he was my access to dog agility.  We traveled all over the east coast together.  He taught me how to drive when the time came, encouraged me to become an agility judge, gave me a safe space to be after school and on weekends and it’s been great to reconnect.  We had a good time chatting on the drive up and drive home.

Now, on to the actual events.  The trial offered 2 runs on Friday afternoon.  So we ran tunnelers and weavers.  Weavers was a bit of a muck up, so when Zora nailed a set of weaves really well I decided to end on that, leave and go party with her.  I’m so glad I made that decision as our weaves the remainder of the weekend were some of the best and most consistent she’s been in a trial yet.  Which I was and am thrilled with!!

Friday night Tom, Zora and I slept in an on-site camper the facility had.  And got minimal sleep.  The camper was nice, serviceable, but being in a new place every little sound woke me up.  The dogs seemed to sleep ok at least.  We were up early, so took a bit of a walk up the road and back in the crisp morning air.  The smell of cows in the air, the creek running along side the road, not a person to be heard, it was a really nice way to start our day.  Also helped get my body moving, which is always a good thing.

Saturday started with Elite Jumpers and first run of the day we qualified to complete our first NATCH!!  (NADAC Agility Trial Champion).  I’m so excited!!  We had a great jumpers run, it was nice to finish the championship with a good run.

My friend (and Zora’s breeder) Holly who lives near by, came by the trial a few hours later and got to see some of our later runs.  Which was very nice.  As she’d not had the chance to see Zora run agility prior It was nice to share our win with her and visit as I don’t get to see her very often.

Saturday we had some great fun runs and finished the day 8 for 8, which was fun.  We had weavers the last run of Saturday, and I was thrilled with how it went!  Definite redemption from the weavers run the day before.  The dogs then got to enjoy some off leash play time in the large fenced field with a pond the site offers.  They had a blast.

Sunday (after another crappy night’s sleep, it poured rain all night, the dogs thought it was crappy too, we were all very tired Sunday), the rain cleared for the trial and we tried our bonus skills in our 2 regular runs.  While we didn’t qualify in either, I was pleased with some of the things we were able to do in each of those runs.  We also have lots more to practice, yay!!  🙂  Switch out at such a distance is still on our list to practice, practice, practice!!

All in all a great weekend.  Tom and Zora were excellent.  I had a great time visiting with friends and enjoying the trial site.  We can’t wait to do it again!

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Judge Bernie Doyle, Zora and me with our Natch ribbon sitting on a yellow table

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