Slept pretty well last night. Who would have thought that riding a ride in MO in July, would have you tossing a real blanket on the bed to stay warm?? Got up and got Hank and I ready for the 7AM ride start. We were the 5th team to time out. Not knowing the trails, and how they mark them, I prefer to follow someone who has ridden the area before. We had a mix of trails. Some that went along the tree line edge in fields, some through the woods. Some gravel roads. Single track, and two track. Lots of creek water, which Hank decided did not taste good. He is becoming a water princess. The pace was 5mph, and we were told the afternoon, had more mud, and slower going. So, we moved along where we could. He is feeling good, forward, and not showing any outward signs of stress of fatigue from all the travel time. We had an in hand obstacle of backing between a couple close trees, then a mount. Mount was really good, backing was fair. He hates things behind him he can not see in those situations, turns to look, then turns his body. P&R's were good. Another obstacle was one that We had an off trail, down and up, with a small ditch at the bottom, maybe 2' wide, not deep. I know Hank normally leaps these things, and I did a big sigh, which the vet commented on. I said "I know what he normally does with these things". So, as I prep for the leap, he steps into the ditch, hangs a hard left, and starts walking towards the vet. I stopped him, and then said "Now watch us get out of this". I quietly backed up in the ditch, turned on the haunches, as he stepped up out of the ditch, and back up the hill we should have gone up in the first place. I can't get mad. Hank just figured this was a good option, and often does something that catches me off guard, and very unexpected. Riding Arabs means you have to have a sense of humor.
The ride is pretty. I never know what to expect. we did have a cool creek we rode into that had a cave along the wall of the creek. Photos of course will follow.
So, I better stop now, as I need to recharge the laptop. More tomorrow, with hopefully more detail!