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Re: RC: everyone is missing

In a message dated 01/21/2000 10:15:30 PM Pacific Standard Time, writes:

<< *how long have you been endurance riding and what is the one ride that you 
 have done that is your biggest accomplishment?* >>

I've been riding endurance since 1971, though for many years all we did was 
one per year and that was the one that started at our place.  We worked up 
gradually to more, and to great devotion to ride management.  We now manage a 
30-50 and a 100,  plus (periodically) a multi-day.  The one ride that stands 
out in my mind as the most satisfactory was the 55 mile 20 Mule Team ride in 
1996.  I took my then 5 1/2 year old mare, bred and born on our ranch, to 
this as her first full length endurance ride.  She was a disaster to start, 
higher than a kite.  I started last, rode mostly alone, and finished last.  
But what I learned about her in that 55 miles will always stand out in my 
memory.  It was a wonderful experience.  She realized at 10 miles from the 
finish exactly where she was, as it was a repeat of the first 10 miles, and 
though the desert trail was confusing with its many lateral trails, she never 
missed the correct trail.  The trail was perfectly marked but I let her 
choose, just to see if she recognized the trail from that morning.  She never 
missed a beat and chose correctly each time.  She came within 1/4 mile of the 
finish line and started whinnying loudly, trumpeting is more like it, as if 
to say "I'm here!  I've finished!  Hello everyone, look at me!  I've done 
it!"  She was so proud and I was thrilled to discover what a great mind she 


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