Coming down the home stretch for getting ready for our trip to CA for Tevis. The past few days we have had some more unusual Texas weather. If 12" of snow in just one of our storms during our winter was not enough, we then had summer arrive early, with heat, and no rain. We watched the fields that had been green from the wet spring, start to crunch. Heat training for Tevis came easy, as any ride involved heat and humidity. But since July arrived, we have been having above average rain fall. In the past couple days alone, we have had about 3". Thankfully, we are not really needing to ride the horses, just let them eat, rest up, and do their thing out in pasture. That is in the pasture that has mud!
We plan on leaving at the end of next week, taking 3 days to get to So. CA for an over night at a friends, before heading up to Auburn, and the fairgrounds that is the end of the ride. Staying there, and doing some easy rides out from the finish line, a ways, and then back in will stretch the horses legs, and remind them where they are. Since both Chance, and Hank have finished the ride, I'm pretty sure they will remember that they are heading "home" to their stalls at the fairgrounds, especially when they reach the part past the last vet check at the Lower Quarry. We don't go up to the ride camp until Friday, as it is dusty and dirty, and not as wonderful and pleasant as it would be without 100's of other rigs.
But before all of that, we have the final packing to do. I have duffel bags for different items. One for grooming etc., one for tack, bridles and such. One for the leg wraps used for traveling and post ride. A nice tough plastic ice chest for medications and anything that could leak. Then we have the crew bags. A duffel for the horse stuff, and one for my stuff that will go into the two vet checks with holds. We have a nice little wagon that holds a zippered hay bale bag perfectly., In that bale bag, we will place all the things to go in to the vet checks, including feed. I am making a huge effort to have them all prepped and ready before we even leave for CA. In the past, I have spent the day before the ride, even going in to the night before, finishing up getting the crew bags and saddle packs ready. But this year will be different. After the rider meeting, I plan on going to the trailer, kissing Hank good night on the nose, and going to bed! Hopefully that plan will work out. Hard enough to sleep the night before, so giving myself the chance to do so for as many hours as possible might get me a little bit of rest.
What is still to be done is the food shopping for the trip. We have made lists of the things we think we will consider eating on the ride. Many items we both like, but there are a few that we won't have a problem with each other eating the others "favorite". I usually can eat well during the ride, while Dolly says she some times has trouble eating. Keeping hydrated AND food in our system will keep us feeling good, thinking straight, and able to take better care of the horses. It was kind of drilled in to me that there is not a reason for the rider to pull from Tevis because they feel crappy unless they are about to die. if the horse is strong and sound, you better crawl back up there, and keep going. Hopefully I will never have to face that and feel that bad to want to pull because of MY issues. I have always been able to push past any aches and pains. Of course, a pain pill doesn't hurt. ;-)
Have a new blog camera on its way, so I hope to be back to adding photos again soon. I wore my little camera out last year!