April 9th and 10th there was an endurance ride at the Priefert Ranch in Mount Pleasant, Texas. The property is BEAUTIFUL!! I believe I heard it was 3,000 acres of varied scenery; open fields through beautiful woods.
My Paso Fino and I did 50 miles on Saturday and then 25 miles on Sunday. I took my Arab that my friend rode on the Sunday ride for 25 miles.
Saturday morning the weather was BEAUTIFUL!! All distances started at the same time, which was...interesting. Lead to a bottleneck at a small down/over a little water trickle/back up a little hill. Imagine 30+ horses milling about while some are refusing to go. It was as chaotic as you imagine and probably MORE so.
Thankfully, my plucky little Paso's like "Pfft, whatever...let's get on with it."
Down, over, up we went!!
About 3 miles in, we came to...what can only best be described as the "Horse Swallowing Mud Pit". We'd been warned the night before there was a "boggy" spot on the trail.
No, this wasn't boggy, this was "Horses sinking to their flanks".
As evidenced by the photos of my friends 15+ hand Quarab after we exited the muck.
Julia and her buckskin Cowboy
Yes, that's mud that splashed up on to his NECK and his FACE!!!
After that, the next 47 miles were fairly uneventful. We enjoyed talking and laughing down the trail and our horses paced fairly well together.
Start of the 50; see how CLEAN we are?
And now how MUDDY we are!!
We went over that bridge 8 times total on Saturday and 4 times on Sunday!
Ridin' the GLIDE!!!
Final vet card!!!
We completed the 50 in 8 hours 59 minutes of RIDING time (add in 1 and 30 minutes for our holds).
Had a good night's rest, and then up again for the 25!!!
My friend on my Arab on Sunday.
One of my favorite views in the world; looking through the ears of my Paso while someone else gets to enjoy my Arab!!! https://www.facebook.com/erin.hurley...6406998557285/
Short video of us moving on down the trail on Sunday.
Plucky Ponies trying to catch the group in front of us!
Another small water crossing. NOT a problem for these two intrepid Endurance ponies!!
At the start of day 2!!
Day 2's very first bridge crossing!!
One of my favorite photos from the weekend!
Look like he's thinking "Are we done YET? How far are we going TODAY you insane woman?!!!"
I don't BELIEVE the ranch is open to the public, which is such a shame. This facility is one of the nicest I've ever been to with gently rolling hills, lush green grass, and decent footing considering it had been raining (and actually rained Saturday night).
If you ever want to try out a short ride ("Intro") or take the plunge and attempt a Limited Distance (LD) ride of 25 miles, and you happen to be near east Texas, I would 100% recommend this ride to try out the sport!!!