Sunday, July 27, 2014

Ft Stevens Beach Ride

Today I really needed to get out of town for a ride~

We deliberated whether to go to Camp Wilkerson or to the beach.  I wanted to get a good hard ride in, as it is two weeks until our next endurance ride at Santiam Cascade, so we decided to go for it and brave a summer Sunday at the OR coast.

The drive down takes about 1 hour and 45 minutes, unless you have the misfortune to get stuck on Hwy 30 due to wrecks or road construction.  Today we cruised straight through and were tacked and on by 10am.

We decided to head right to the beach, in hopes it wouldn't be as crowded this early and the gamble payed off.  We had the North end totally to ourselves!!

I didn't get any pictures right at first as I was uncertain how C was going to react to all this open space, and ocean, and excitement.  I don't think Tucker had been to the coast before as he was pretty concerned about it in the beginning.  He was sucking right up to Cartman and C kept turning his head around as if to see what was wrong.

We walked about 2 miles down to the wreck of the Peter Iredale and then decided to pick up the pace on the way back.  Both horses were awesome, no shenanigans whatsoever.  We trotted back and the turned around and loped back a mile. 

By the time we'd made it back to the approach for the second time we had gone almost 6 miles.

We then climbed to big dune back to the trailer, offered water (no takers) and then headed out on the dune trails.  The trails were more overgrown than the last time I'd been through there two years ago, but Cartman picked his way through with little direction from me. 

It always seems the dune trails go on forever- they are hard to navigate at speed as they are basically a long narrow groove worn into the sand and going through a lot of Scotch broom and tall grasses.

We finally crossed over the asphalt road and to a trail loop in the forested area. You can see from the pictures that we had a real variety of trail conditions today.  Parts of the forested trail we were able to long trot for a mile or two, then there were sections with tons of roots, narrow openings between trees, and stuff that the horses had to really pay attention to.

At the end of the day we rode for about 4 hours and covered 16 pretty tough miles. Even though we had to walk probably 50% of the ride I think the sand really put a good conditioning effort into the day.

The boys dove into beet pulp mashes and water when we got back to the trailer.  I wish I had videoed Cartman eating his, he really needed a straw!


irish horse said...

That beach rides sounds glorious! And no shenanigans, wow! Love those wide open beaches you have up there, and the dune trails look fun too. Completely envious!

HHmstead said...

Looks like just a beautiful ride on the beach & dunes too! You're lucky to be so "close"! Sorry I won't see you at BB :-(