The Thomspon River Ranch Endurance ride. For months, the Hooves and Company crew have been working hard , putting long days in the saddle to put this ride on. Since the ride is being held in a totally new location, none of us new the geography. Even before all the snow was gone, we have been out with our GPS units and maps trying to find trails, which was no easy job. So many trails we tried would dead end , or turn into a trail that was not suitable for endurance. We spent a lot of time backtracking, rerouting , unmarking and remarking, even up until last week in fact! It’s been an interesting time but I think, by god, we have the makings of what might turn into a great endurance ride! With the majority of the work done for trail crew members like myself, things aren’t exactly winding down . Not only are most of us working the ride, but most of us are also riding the ride!
Maggie and I will have our go on Saturday with the 35 miler. Ironically enough, with all the miles I have marked preparing for this, I have only seen the first two miles and the last 2 miles of the 35 miler so it will be as much of a surprise to me as it is to anyone else coming in. No advantages here! Darn... All of my other trail discovering adventures were for the 50 miler or sections that we ended up not using this year.
Originally the limited distance ride was going to be a 25 miler, but with the way the trails came together, it turned out we had to add a few more miles to make it work right coming into vet check. I am a little concerned about how Maggie will handle the extra 10 miles but luckily , there isn’t a lot of elevation so I think if I pace her correctly, she’ll be fine.
This will be Maggie’s first competition and believe it or not, it will be my first actual AERC sanctioned ride. Everything else I have ridden , or attempted , was CTR’s. I hadn’t exactly planned on competing in my first AERC ride with Maggie, let alone doing it this year, but when life throws you lemons…. You know what they say.
For now, I am just trying to get through a busy work week and I guess I better start thinking about packing up. We'll head out on Friday morning.
Hope to see a few of you there!