Friday, June 21, 2019

Hillbillie Willie's City of Rocks Endurance Ride: Day 1

June 21 2019

When I saw Deb and Jack (Jackpot Jackson), I knew I wanted Jack as Willie's mentor/riding partner at City of Rocks. Jack is big, big-strided, and steady. I just knew he'd keep Willie calm during the start - which to me is the most important part of an endurance ride. I'm getting too old (and wimpy) to have a hot horse at the start of a ride (ahem Finneas!). Once I get through the first 5 or 10 miles, Willie will calm down... but isn't it nice just have a calm horse from the start!

I sort of stole Deb and Jack from Nance and Fancy and her riding partner, but, this was all about Willie :)

And you know what happened? The start went perfectly. Jack was relaxed and in no hurry. Willie absorbed all that, and he was relaxed, and in no hurry - none of that bouncy-hot-wiggly-jiggly-pacey bone-jarring trot/pace/trot, worrying about catching the competition ahead him.

Even when Mike and Taladega went by us at the start, both of them having a discussion with each other about slowing down and enjoying the scenery, Willie just trotted on, steady and relaxed with his mentor Jack.

The entire day, in fact, was just beautiful, mostly sunny with a lovely afternoon edge-of-a-thunderstorm, and calm steady and smooth! Willie felt great from start to finish, and he finished Day 1 fit and ready to continue on to Day 2!

on Box Top trail, early part of loop one in City of Rocks Nat'l Reserve. It's one of my favorite scenic parts of the park. We're following Deb and Jack, and in front of her is Mike and Dega, who have come to somewhat of an understanding.

This is Kimi Linnell and her Standardbred mare Sego Lily. We got to leapfrog each other a couple times on the way to and in Castle Rocks State Park. Go Standardbreds!

Willie leading the way back home, on the Lathe Trail in CORNR

The incomparable Deb and Jack, catching the edge of that storm that didn't scare me!

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