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Re: [RC] 100 Mile One Day Rides - Barbara McCrary

Oh, my goodness, do you ever have it right on! There are numerous reasons given why people don't ride the 100. Some of them are perfectly understandable (the rider's health condition is the most forgivable.) Examples:

1) I rode some other tough 100 miler last month and my horse is still lame.
2) I'd love to do a 100 someday, but my horse isn't ready.
3) I'd love to do a 100 someday, but I'm not sure I can do that distance.
4) I just don't have a 100-mile horse.
5) I'll be there next year, but I just can't make it this year.

I understand every one of those reasons, and I also understand that most of them are perfectly logical. I also know that it takes as much time and energy of ride managers and volunteers to put on a 100-miler for 10 people as it does for 100. The logistics of balancing all the needs of the riders on 100 miles of trail is enormous. Trail maintenance is just the beginning. We personally maintain all the trails on our ride, with the exception of one 5-mile portion (which is maintained by Becky Glazer, who lives and rides on that portion. Thanks, Becky!!!) We even repair the trails in the state park, because they don't (CA is broke, remember?)
We are lucky to have the assistance of two horsemen's organizations as ride personnel, and the generous support of numerous neighbors. If we didn't have that, we'd be out of ride management all together.

This is year 23. We have memories of wonderful days of exploration, discovery, and pure joy of being out on this trail we love so much. We would like to share it with others.

Barbara McCrary, ride mgr.
Swanton Pacific 75/100
"The Most Beautiful Trail in the World"
Website: http://members.cruzio.com/~bigcreekranch/

See our website for information, photos, and a printable ride entry

----- Original Message ----- From: "Truman Prevatt" <tprevatt@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
To: "Barbara McCrary" <bigcreekranch@xxxxxxxxxx>
Cc: <ridecamp@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>; <AERCMembersForum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Friday, July 22, 2005 6:08 AM
Subject: Re: [RC] 100 Mile One Day Rides

Barbara, you hit the nail square on the head. When I started in the SE you'd get 20 show up in the 25, 15 for the 50 and 7 or 8 for the 100. At one or two of the SE 100's I went to in the early days of my riding there would be more 100's than 50's. Hey that's a pretty good mix. Today in the SE - with a few exceptions ( and exceptional years when the PAC or NAC is in the East) - you get 50 show for 25, 50 for the 50 and 5 for the 100. That's not a good mix. I know of one 100 that was dropped because the RM got tired of people saying they wanted a 100 but on 6 or 7 showed up. One 100 started because the ride manager was responding to all the people saying they wanted one and would come, only to have 3 people show. They only did it one year - can you blame them?

We've had in the SE about 50% decline in the 100 mile starts in the 100's while at the same time a 60% to 70% increase in the number of total starts. We went from 12% of the starts coming from 100's in the SE back when in the mid 90's to about 4% of the starts coming from 100's today.

We seem to have evolved to a few big 100 mile rides and have lost the small ones. This may either be a cause of or an effect of the overall decline - most likely both an contributor to and result of the decline. The bottom line is endurance rides are driven by supply and demand. When the demand decreases, so will the supply of people willing to run them.

If people want 100's go ride them - increase the demand. If you aren't ready then go help the ride managers on their 100's. If you want people to run 100's so you can "ride them someday when you are ready," then by golly go out there and volunteer to help a ride manger run a 100 today. If you don't, don't expect that many to be around when "you are ready." Ride managers need people to help. It's hard to get help - especially at 3 AM! The fate of the 100 mile ride is up to the riders who want to ride them or say they want to ride them.


Barbara McCrary wrote:

If riders don't come to 100 mile rides and support them, how long do you think 100 mile rides will last? A ride manager works just as hard to put on a 100 miler for 25 people as he would to put it on for 250. We had a long discussion on Ridecamp not too long ago, and it seems fairly obvious that many riders nowadays prefer 50s or even LDs because they can get back to camp, take a shower and relax.

This is a shameless plug for our ride on August 20.

Barbara McCrary, ride mgr.
Swanton Pacific 75/100
"The Most Beautiful Trail in the World"
Website: http://members.cruzio.com/~bigcreekranch/


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[RC] 100 Mile One Day Rides, Joe Long
Re: [RC] 100 Mile One Day Rides, Barbara McCrary
Re: [RC] 100 Mile One Day Rides, Truman Prevatt