[RC] Coso Junction Jam - Cunningham, Marci
Congratulations to Sue and Mike Benson for putting on a first class endurance ride this past weekend at Coso Junction, a wide spot in the road about 30 miles north of Ridgecrest CA on Highway 395. Too bad half their pre-registered riders cancelled due to the threat of bad weather. The riders who cancelled were the losers since Saturday was dry, though windy and Sunday was beautiful, with sunny skies and no wind! Yes, the trail was boggy in some places due to Friday's rain, but hey this is endurance and trail conditions are mainly dictated by Mother Nature, not by the ride manager. We were treated to spectacular views of the high desert landscape and even hoped to see some wild horses on Sunday's trail, but I'm sure any in the area high tailed it out of there when the front runners came through. It isn't often that you can water your horse from mud puddles and natural streams in this part of the country so it was nice not worrying about hot temperatures for the riders or horses.
I have to admit that as I listened to the rain beating down on my horse trailer all night on Friday I was questioning my sanity and wondering if it would still be raining when it was time to saddle, but the rain stopped sometime in the wee hours of the morning and we saddled in dry weather. I was grateful for a good waterproof blanket for my horse, as he was dry and toasty when it came time to saddle. I rode my gelding, Koztarr+, both days along with my good friend, Jane McGrath, who also rode both days on her 3000+ mile gelding, Fire Mt Scamp.
Sue and Mike surpassed all the requirements of ride managers by providing a convenient campsite, a well-marked and safe trail, competent vets, friendly volunteers and useful completion awards (a folding chair for the first day and a folding table for the second day, both with the ride name and logo). I just hope they weren't discouraged with this year's losses and consider putting on this ride next year.
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