<% appTitle="Ridecamp Archives" %> Ridecamp: Re: [RC] Very young riders in AERC rides or at any rides

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    Re: [RC] Very young riders in AERC rides or at any rides - Charles

    I think this issue may be similar to skiing for youngsters.
    I've been skiing since 10 years old (33 years ago, only missed on season because of a car accident in all that time).  My brother has been skiing as long.  For a long time, the entire family (5 kids and Dad, plus my Uncle and his 3 kids) went skiing.  We still ski today.   I've taught an ex-wife and my kids to ski (marriage advice: Pay for lessons and professional instructors for your spouse).  My two kids have been skiing since they were 3 or so.
    My youngest nephew started when he was 1 (Ok, he turned 2 the next weekend).  By age 5 he could go anywhere he wanted and ski in control and do well.  All the kids spent their time skiing the Bear Mountain Section at Killington as much as possible.  (Expert section at the ski resort).  They could go down Outer Limits, Devils Fiddle, or Superstar without a problem (Canyon Quad came along later). 
    I don't recommend those trails for most kids.  However, given enough time and experience, anyone can do them regardless of age.  By the time my nephew was 5, he had enough skiing time to be pretty much an expert and old hand at it.
    I'm going to suggest the 5 year old doing a 100 mile ride is a similar thing.  Most 5 year olds can't and shouldn't do it.  (Hell, I know enough to know I can't and shouldn't do it even at 43).  However, there are some who I'm sure were "born in the saddle" and have ridden before they walked.  I've seen youngsters team penning (OK,  maybe he was 8).  There are some 5 year olds who can ride, and can ride a 100 miles.
    Before a blanket rule is made, I hope everyone will consider that every situation is different, and if rules are made, they should take that into account.
    PS: I suggest a rule something along the lines of:  If the Ride manager feels a participant under age X (you guys work out the number) is not capable of handling a horse properly for the ride, then that rider is eliminated or not allowed to ride. 
    ----- Original Message -----
    From: Bob Morris
    Sent: Wednesday, October 23, 2002 9:35 PM
    Subject: RE: [RC] Very young riders in AERC rides

    While I do not disagree with Joe's position I offer the facts that the main proponents are Cliff Lewis who took this son Tommy on a 100 mile ride when he was five years old and his picture graced the pages of the endurance publications. The latest is Tommy's son, Cliff's grandson, repeating the adventure. This is a family with a deep background in the history of endurance competition in the US. It is a family with an ingrained  deep experience in horse riding. It is a family that is well known.
    I doubt you will ever get a negative experience from any of the family no matter the age.

    Bob Morris
    Morris Endurance Enterprises
    Boise, ID

    -----Original Message-----
    From: ridecamp-owner@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:ridecamp-owner@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx]On Behalf Of Dbeverly4@xxxxxxx
    Sent: Wednesday, October 23, 2002 7:28 PM
    To: reallykk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
    Cc: ridecamp@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
    Subject: Re: [RC] Very young riders in AERC rides

    In a message dated 10/23/2002 6:21:00 PM Pacific Standard Time, reallykk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx writes:

    Good for you, Joe.  Although I'm sure everyone won't agree, I am behind you
    on this.

    I agree and would like to also thank Joe for saying it so well in his letter.  When the last round of stories came out on RC about a 5 year old doing a 100 miler I was otherwise occuppied (but still appalled) and was tired of hashing this argument out on Ridecamp.  I say GO JOE!!


    RE: [RC] Very young riders in AERC rides, Bob Morris