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Re: [RC] agile arab at Swanton Pacific - Kristen A Fisher

The only thing that comes to my mind when I read these stories is HOLY S***,
HOLY S***, HOLY S***, HOLY S***, HOLY S***!!!

Thank goodness you both are OK. Just reading it made me want to faint.
Kristen in central TX where the "MOUNTAINS" are 1,000 feet high - MAYBE

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Ridecamp Guest" <guest-owner@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
To: <ridecamp@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Wednesday, September 01, 2004 5:21 PM
Subject: [RC] agile arab at Swanton Pacific


Please Reply to: Nancy Corbelletta nancy.corbelletta@xxxxxxxxxx or
ridecamp@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
==========================================

At the Swanton Pacific 75 ride last weekend I was going up a steep narrow
uphill switch backed trail and was about half way up the mountain. Suddenly
my Arab gelding Steele just stopped and started sliding backward.  His front
legs were up and well extended since the hill was about a 40 degree grade at
that point.  To our left was the side of the mountain even steeper than what
was ahead of us, to our right was a hundred plus foot drop off and the whole
trail was only 2-3 feet wide in most places. At first it felt like he was
going to fall over backwards. Somehow while standing on his hind legs with
his front feet up in the air like the Lone Ranger's horse Silver he managed
to pivot to the right on his hind legs.  At the 90 degree point he had hind
feet on the trail and his front legs up in the air like a dog sitting up
begging for a bone.  At this point my brain was telling me to bale off the
horse but when I looked down and saw nothing but air decided that we would
both be dying together.  At that point my screams became even louder and
sounded more terrified (if possible).  Steele continued to make a turn on
the haunches scooting his hind legs in place and keeping them somehow on the
trail and continuing with his right handed circle until some how he placed
his front legs back down again on the trail facing down hill (180 degrees)
from our starting point.  We were now sliding down the trail and he was
scrambling with all four legs to stay on the trail.   We finally came to a
stop with me sitting half in the saddle and half on Steele's neck and one
foot still in the stirrup. I hopped off on the up hill side holding on to
the horse so I wouldn't slide under him and off the trail.   At this point I
thought we may live and started to hear Carl Bruno further up the trail
asking if I was alright.  Steele stood their shaking and I did the same.  I
thought he must have had some major medical problem to have this happen and
started looking him over.  Then I saw his breast collar tie-down strap
dangling between his front legs.  The brass snap that attaches it to the
girth had broken in two and his saddle slid back making it impossible for
him to move his back legs up the steep incline.  After correcting the saddle
placement and reattaching the breast collar strap with a spare snap he
wanted to turn around and continue while I wanted to hand walk down the hill
and regroup.  We compromised at a turn of the switch back which was slightly
wider and he turned into the hillside and was again in the correct direction
to continue.  I still was pretty shook up but mounted and he continued up
that steep grade without any hesitation.  Later when I caught up with Carl
he described how he looked back when he heard my screams and saw Steele
reared up on two feet and thought that we would go over the edge.




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Ridecamp is a service of Endurance Net, http://www.endurance.net.
Information, Policy, Disclaimer: http://www.endurance.net/Ridecamp
Subscribe/Unsubscribe http://www.endurance.net/ridecamp/logon.asp

Ride Long and Ride Safe!!

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[RC] agile arab at Swanton Pacific, Ridecamp Guest