Sunday, May 31, 2009

a good boy scout

Saturday hubby and I decided to go for a ride. We parked out on one of the further loops, and did about 10 miles of it. When we got back to the trailer, I was feeling a bit crappy, but hubby was ready to ride some more, since he was heading out of town, for a busy month of working NASCAR, and this was his last chance to ride for weeks. So, I told him to ride to the main trailhead, and I would go pick him up there. Just another 7 miles. So, off he goes, with Flag just as cheerful as can be that he gets to go down the trail some more, and Hank looking happy that he gets to take the trailer to the end of the trail.

I get there, park, and go sit in the shade with some friends who are camping. Then after awhile, my phone rings. Hubby came across some riders who were a bit lost, and their horses were pooped. It was a pretty hot day. I direct him to how they can get back to their trailer, and suggest he stay with them to the creek crossing, and help cool down their horses, since he has a sponge with him for just that purpose. Then after awhile, another cal,, with him telling me he is staying with them to the split to their trailer, as one rider is not feeling well. What should have been another hour fifteen, to hour and a half ride, has turned in to him being out there almost 3 hours. He finally arrives, to fill in the details.

Seems the ladies did have a map, but got turned around, and almost headed further away from their trailer when he met up with them. They had 3 bottles of water between all three of them, and had been out a few hours already. The horses were a mix f an old out of shape broodmare, a younger, green horse, and one who was overweight and tired. As he started riding in, one woman kept falling further and further behind, and he finally asked if she was OK. She admitted she was diabetic, and was starting to crash. He dug in his saddle bag, and found one of his snack bars. She said she could not eat a candy bar, when he explained it had 2 grams of sugar, as he was borderline diabetic. She ate it, but it took about 30 min. to get her really feeling better. Meanwhile, he decided it would be best to pony her horse, which Flag willingly did, as the woman was hanging on to the saddle horn. Another woman had a rein about to break, and he told them he had something to fix it, but found it just needed to be re-tied. Oh, and his 2 bottles of water went to the ladies.

I told him he was their guardian angel for the day. He felt had he not found them, the one woman would have had to have EMT's come pick her up off the trail. It was just a little reminded for us to consider our trail rides, what basics we should have along, and to consider the "what if" scenarios. These ladies had not trail ridden on these trails in years and years. The weather was hot, and they were under prepared, and under conditioned.

So, my friends will laugh at all the stuff I have on my saddle all the time, and that I always have some sort of snack along, but this weekend, by husband was the good boy scout that had the right stuff along, and helped some wayward riders get back to their trailer safely.

Here is what is in my saddle packs, and all of this fit in a couple small zipper pencil holders, then in my side packs under my water bottles. (I use Stowaway Cantle and Pommel packs from Easycare)

One side:
short piece of baling wire
a couple zip ties
shoe lace or parachute cord
small packers/campers roll of duct tape
a small double end snap

In my back pack, is my first aid
vet wrap, stored in a discarded water bottle, with the top cut off, to the length of the roll. (keeps it from crushing in pack)
small container/film can of blood stop or wonder dust
small container of gall salve

The other side:
first aid packets of betadyne,triple antibiotic cream
Oragel (stops pain for more than teeth, great for itching of bug bite or sting)
benadryl (for stings, bites allergic reactions)
pain killer
tampon (can be use on a puncture wound)
feminine napkin can stop wound bleeding with vet wrap
small spray bottle of campers bug spray.

In my front pack, I have chapstic, snack, and then my 2, sometimes 4 water bottles. Some people electrolyte pills, or packets of EmergenC from Wal-Mart. Oh, ad a knife, that clips on my half chaps, and a multi tool in my pack. We also keep our phones on us, not the horses, in case of separation.

You do not need much of any of these things, and they will pack in to the small packs. If you use an item, then you can replace it. Go to Wal-Mart, and look in the camping section, and you will find some of these items in small packable versions.

While it is more common for us to use items on another person or their horse, or tack, I feel better having these things always along, as one never knows when that quick one hour ride can turn in to 1/2 a day in the sun!

Are you a good scout?

1 comment:

Tammy said...

Yes, those women were very lucky he came upon them! We had a similar situation in the Black Hills. Came across an older woman on foot. She started at one trail head & planned to meet friends in the middle. Probably an 8 to 10 miles trail. She had been walking for hours, out of water, no sign of her friends and we knew a storm was rolling in. We asked her if she had ever rode a horse before & she said not since she was a kid. So out best bet was to put her on my youngest son's kid broke, bomb proof horse and he got behind my husband. We kept one of our horses in front of her & one behind and told her to hang on to the horn. She chattered nervously all the way back to the trail head - probably 5 or so miles. The storm rolled in right as we hit camp with severe lightning and heavy rain.

It ended up being quite an adventure for her. After the rain, she took pictures of all of us and her with the horse she rode. We took her back to the trail head to get her car. She sent a note to us after she got back that her friends decided not to meet her due to the impending storm. (nice friends, huh)

Love your saddle bag list. I get rather lackadaisical about carrying stuff with me and this just goes to show that you never know when you might need it.