Friday October 7 2011
Due to too much snow at Robie and in the high country, the start of Tevis was moved to the Auburn Fairgrounds - same place as the finish. It was odd seeing all the horses vet in there!
The horses will follow the normal Tevis trail in the opposite direction to Foresthill (38 miles) and Chicken Hawk (at 42 miles) then do a 15 miles out-and-back 'loop' to Chickenhawk, Foresthill, and back to Auburn. There won't be as much climbing and descending as usual (as in, 19,000 feet of climbing, 23,000 feet of descent), but I don't think it's going to be as 'easy' as some people are sort of dissing it to be. On Thursday, ride management considered cancelling the ride; 24 hours ago they had no trail, now they have a trail for the 180ish riders and horses. They've done a phenomenal job getting this all together. It will be interesting to see how it all plays out. I predict the finish percentage will be about the same - 50% (maybe 60%) - because I think some riders may underestimate the course. When I rode Tevis in 2009, I recall there being 100 miles of rock underfoot! That rock will still be there. And, about half the cliffs will still be there, and since half the trail will be done twice, there are just about as many cliffs to ride along!
A few shots from today's vet in for the 2011 Tevis Cup.
Australian Jennifer Gilbertson, riding in her first Tevis.
Kevin and Far, going for their 2nd buckle together. Far nearly tore his front foot off in 2007.
You don't see too many of this breed at Tevis. A Norwegian Fjord trotting out. Fawn Creek Thor will be ridden by Brandi Ferganchick.
Nick and Forever Dawn - 4 buckles for Nick, 3 buckles for Don
(and Nick and Don carried The Raven to a finish last year!)
12-year-old Barrak Blakeley in his first Tevis Cup. He's riding with his mom Gabriela.
Heather Reynolds, 3-buckle recipient, 1-time winner and 2-time Haggin Cup winner. She's riding Heir Express.
Tevis legend and 27-buckle holder Hal Hall and Dreamm On.
Tevis legend Barbara White, going for her 31st buckle! She's riding Canadian Brook, who finished carrying Barbara last year.
Dr Carter Hounsel vetting in a happy rider's horse.
Pam Bailie, 2 buckles, and Macy, 1 buckle (also pictured up top).
Garrett Ford and The Fury - last year's Haggin Cup (Best Condition) winner... and his future riding partner!
Riders Crockett Dumas - an endurance legend and 5-time Tevis finisher - and Colton Medeiros, 12 years old, in his first Tevis.