Delayed blog post here, this ride was Oct. 4
I was so hoping to get one more 50 mile ride in this year, unfortunately it was not to be.
Work has been absolutely insane and I've been there 7 days a week. Not surprisingly I have not been getting in many long rides. The work schedule, coupled with a bit or rain, and the fact that our logging road loops are now off limits due to the new $150 permit required Aug through Jan.... meant I just didn't get it done.
Michelle and I had planned to do this ride since August and I figured doing a 25 would be better than no ride at all, so we headed out Friday morning for the long drive to Prescott Wa and the Jubilee Ranch. We stopped few times and managed to find a Starbucks about half way there, although I did drive over part of a curb trying to get in the nearest parking lot. Eeeek.
Ride camp looked a lot bigger this year as we rounded the corner at the ranch. Wow, I was a little nervous about finding a spot to park! We pulled into camp and then did a quick foot cruise to find a good spot on flat ground. Bonus- it was near both a huge trough and the porta potties!
Michelle wanted to take her new horse Rosie on the trail ride to introduce her to endurance. By the time we got there and went to check in she had decided just to go for it and ride the 25 with me! We planned to go slow and take our time- I was in no hurry and was just there to have fun after all :)
We vetted in and had the horses all set up pretty quickly and then we cruised through camp to do some visiting before the ride meeting that evening.
I really should have written this blog post right after the ride, as I'm sure I am forgetting much about the weekend.
Ride morning looked like it could, possibly, do a little raining. Sigh. I put on my black jacket. By the time I had Cartman tacked up I was hot. I removed the jacket and went with my standard a hoodie.
Rosie was a bit wound up but Michelle managed to get her close to the mounting block and vault on. Both horses were very well mannered as we walked through camp towards the starting line. I mention this because last year we both thought we were going to end up in the dirt before actually starting the ride! Lol.
Before long we were on the trail and trotting. It was still a little overcast but not cold. We wound around the orchards and all kinds of scarey boxes and equiptment. At one point we came to an intersection and some of the workers were trying to start up a tracto with a big cart trailer thing attatched. They very kindly turned it off when they saw the horses and we were able to get by without incident.
It didn't seem that we were travelling that slowly but we did do quite a bit of interspersed walk and trot. Thankfully we were able to keep a nice bubble and Rosie was really relaxed about the whole thing!
We tried to stop and graze the horses on the edges of the orchards whenever we got some good grass patches and at one stop Cartman managed to spook himself by brushing up against an apple tree and a bunch of apples fell to the ground, oops!
We pulled back into camp right on time (we had some type of plan, but for the life of me I can't remember what it was.) The horses vetted through although Cartman managed to drag me over to a nice pile of Orchard grass and then proceeded to pee on it!
Rose was a bit of a pill in the vet check this time. For her vet in she had gone through Dr Root's line and he is so patient and understanding. This vet was a little more harsh but Michelle go her through it and we raced back to the trailer to get some snacks!
I wasn't really even hungry and after my stomach disaster at Santiam thought I'd better get some practice actually paying attention to what I was feeding myself. I opted for a protein shake and banana. This combo seems to work the best for me when I'm going to be going right back out on the trail. No potato chips. No Greek Vegetable salad.
We didn't have any time to spare so made sure to saddle up and head over to the starting line on time.
The sun had come out at this point and it was a beautiful day. The ride photographer got several good pictures of us as we came up a hill overlooking a huge river (Snake?)
We did manage to get off trail during this section of the ride, directly after leaving a trough we headed up a hill and missed the turn half way up the hill. We had run into Michelle and Jodie and the four of us picked our way down the hill towards the flags we finally spotted!
At this point we only had a few miles to go, but we were really running out of time. Both Rosie and Cartman had been eating and drinking well and neither was acting tired, so we turned on a big trot and headed for camp.
We ended up riding up behind a few other riders and camp was now in sight! We walked probably the last 1/2 mile in and both horses pulsed in immediately.
Cartman almost managed to pee on the hay again, but I was ready for him this time. When he stretched out I quickly kicked most of the hay out from under him. Whew. I actually think I might bring a small flake of grass hay or straw in my vet bag for him from now on. He will pee on trail but if we are moving along he will try and hold it. He did that at Mt Adams and wouldn't pulse down (a first for him). I walked him away from the pulse area and he immediately pee'd. I took him right back and he was then down.
We vetted through and headed back to the trailer.
I wasn't even tired after this ride, but it was more fun to ride with a buddy this time and I think the 50 would have been a little hard on my "hairy dude". Yup, Cartman was working on a true Yak coat this year- he has since completed it and I may actually have to break down and do a trace clip on him if I want to do much riding this winter.
We were both pretty happy with the ride and Michelle's new mare did awesome out on the trail. She didn't even seem to be at all tired after her first 25 miler!
The evening was also great as a dinner was provided by the Jubilee Ranch! How awesome was that? No smelling all those great burgers and steaks from other campsites this time! We got hot food and it was Mexican food- my absolute favorite!!!
Both horses came out of the ride really well the next morning-- with no swelling or filling in their legs or any other maladies! Whew, this was a real relief after out experience at this ride last year!
We attended the awards and then headed for home:)