Sunday, December 7, 2014

Delving into this world of blogging...

While I love FB, I am thinking some of my longer training/riding posts may be better to write out here :)

About me and why I'm here Motoring down the Trails....
I love horses.  I got bit by the bug young, but wasn't able to own a horse or ride consistently.  Fast-forward many a years, every vacation and trip my husband and I took included a trail ride of some sort. July of 2007 he became "that" husband who for my birthday got me a pony! LOL
He found a barn near our house for me to lease a horse.  I chose Apache, a red roan appaloosa who put up with all sorts of riders (little kids) for lessons and was always happy to see me arrive for fun in the ring or out on the trail. 

And so it begins...
Apache taught me a lot - re-honing my skills and making me realize my love of the trail. Apache suffered a horrible kick through his hind muscle in the field one night and I helped the barn owner care for his wound and rehab him when ready.  He will always hold a special place in my heart, but I knew I needed a horse who that "love" of the trail too so in time I went horse hunting. 
For a good trail horse, maybe even to do CTR, and black...  and this is who I fell for:

I renamed him Traveler, and registered him Appendix Hardship as "Trail Traveling Rebel".  Now this guy.... Well, lets just say the horse I saw twice was not the same horse that was delivered to the barn 3 weeks later!  A little psycho that first day, underweight, severely herd bound and occasionally dangerous as such.  But, we worked on the ground for the winter months and developed a good bond before riding in the spring.  We went on our first camping ride in October 2008 and I was hooked.  It was just for fun, no speed or goal...just a bunch of women out freezing their butts off at times :)

I wanted to try a CTR, but alas, life got in the way...job changes, had major lameness from sole bruises and by the time he was good we moved and I was pregnant with my son so we were restricted to wandering.  During all this our bond still strengthened.  I didn't care if I was riding or not, he got lots of grooming when I couldn't or ground work.

The barn I happened to find through yahoo groups in TN was someone who does endurance and breeds Arabs.  This further hooked me!  I had my mind set we were going to get to an LD someday.  I trained with them when I could go with the slow group....again life laughed at me - a layoff and another kid!  And later, another move!

So here we are,  moved to Central VA Dec 2013, and I find more friends online (FB this time) who are interested in endurance and we start a plan to do LDs in 2014 - June and Aug for sure.  So our conditioning begins. We didn't make it to the June ride for various reasons, but we signed up for Iron Mountain Jubilee in Ivanhoe VA in August and gosh darn it we were going!  I found a way to condition and train despite losing both my main riding buddies...

Traveler surprised me with how well he was doing at a training ride at Graves Mill (that had me scared half to death - another story!) which ended up being 28 miles instead of the intended 20 and that convinced me to switch from the 15mi intro ride to full on 25mi LD.  Which was really a 28 mile ride at IMJ...

That ride...that day changed my life in so many ways... (see next post)

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