Friday, June 26, 2015

My First Official Endurance Ride - Liz Brown - Full Story

by Liz brown
Desk to Derby | June 23, 2015

I’ve been riding every day for almost three weeks in Moab. Surely, I thought, I’m now fit enough to attempt two 50 mile (80 kilometre) endurance races in one weekend.

So we packed up the trailer and drove nearly five hours to the Strawberry Fields Endurance Ride near the Strawberry Reservoir in Utah. Dubbed the “most scenically beautiful ride in the mountain region,” the ride takes you up mountains, through creeks, winds in and out of dense forest and through lush meadows of pretty yellow flowers.

I’ve been told it’s all very lovely and tranquil and I’m sure it is – if you aren’t preoccupied with preventing your horse from bucking you off, worrying about your hydration pack chafing a festering wound in your neck and gritting your teeth because your knees are about to explode from absorbing the shock of hours of trotting...

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Wednesday, June 17, 2015

An Old Wife’s Tale — OD 100 - Patti Stedman

Enduranceintrospection Blog - Full Story

By Patti Stedman | June 16th, 2015

[Disclaimer: As I write this post, I do so knowing that my husband may veto its publication. While he grudgingly tolerates my it-sounds-over-the-top-to-say “public” persona, he’s a pretty private guy, and while I might be okay sharing with the world where I peed behind a bush in Vermont, being the subject of a blog post might cause a nay vote. We’ll see.]

My close personal friend Oprah says that everyone has a story.

Without question everyone who rides a horse 100 miles in one day, on what is arguably the toughest 100-mile endurance course in the world, the Old Dominion 100, renowned for its rocks, its heat, its humidity, and its unrelenting climbs and descents — they have a tale to tell.

It was not Richard’s idea to ride the OD 100. It was mine.

He loves the Vermont ride, and rode his first 100 there on Sarge last year.

But over the course of the now eleven years that the two have been competing, I’ve always believed the OD course was right up Sarge’s alley. He’s a mountain goat of a horse, able to climb nimbly over rocks and boulders without slowing, undaunted by huge climbs, able to make time on hard pack with his Amish road buggy trot, and possessed of a work ethic I’ve frankly never encountered in a horse. In short, and I say it repeatedly, Sarge is a rock star.

I’d suggested the OD 100 to Richard, I don’t know, perhaps 47 times and this year he said ‘yes.’ With an important out. As long as it wasn’t too hot. (A prophetic man might have said ‘as long as it isn’t too humid...’)

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