Home Current News News Archive Shop/Advertise Ridecamp Classified Events Learn/AERC
Endurance.Net Home Ridecamp Archives
[Archives Index]   [Date Index]   [Thread Index]   [Author Index]   [Subject Index]

Re: [RC] Riding in the dark - a few more questions please - rides2far

  =What preparations, if any, do you take to deal with the lack of 
sleep on a 100-miler or the altered sleep pattern of a moon light 

None. I usually just get 4 or 5 hours the night before the ride. And
though I have gotten sleepy when we're going slow after dark (walking) I
really haven't had much trouble getting up the next morning.  It just
isn't something I think that much about. You've got that adrenaline thing

  =What preparations, if any, do you take FOR YOUR HORSE to deal 
with the lack of sleep on a 100-miler or the altered sleep pattern 
of a moon light ride?

Who says they're not *usually* up during the night? I believe they sleep
a lot more on an average day than we do. I know that a 50 disturbs my
horse's 10AM to whenever nap. 

  =Do you have generally arrive a few days early or stay a few days 
late when you do rides that require you to ride at night?

I get there Friday morning for a Saturday race. Might not leave quite as
early Sunday if we finished late but if we finish by midnight or so we'll
pull out around lunch Sunday.
  =Do you have any special food items or beverages (for yourself, 
not the horse) that help you pep up or stay alert?

No, but I have learned to take food on the trail with me after dark. If
you have to walk for a ways you suddenly notice you are hungry. Those
will be the best peanutbutter crackers you'll ever eat! Take enough to
share. They can hear the paper crackling when you're walking. :-)

  =Do you alter your horse's feeding strategy at all?

Yeah, I let them eat everything...and everybody's stuff. If it's still on
the ground in the vet check and he wants it, he gets to clean it up. :-)
I have taken hay with me when leaving a vet check before...just had a
flake under my arm. >g<  Something you don't think about is that you can
see grass during the day and can let them grab bites on the trail but
once it gets dark you can't see it and can't offer it. I remember on my
first 100 Joylynn Carlson was crewing for someone else and she put pans
of mash on her tailgate and drove slowly up the road letting our horses
eat as they walked. That was great. :-)

  =It seems that the use of lights are a personal preference.  What 
about reflective gear?  Do you use any sort of tape, vests, leg 
wraps, etc so you can be seen by drivers/riders at night?  If you 
do, where are the best places to purchase?  

I used to order my relfective tape from NASHBAR a bicycle catalog. They
had little reflective stickers & strips that I could just peel off and
stick to my stirrup or helmet. Don't even know if they exist any more.

  =Do you intentially ride at night in preparation for a 

Not really.

If you do, do you generally ride in a group or alone?

I've never had anyone I could talk into doing stuff like that with me
*intentionally*. However, several people have ridden in the dark with me
when I took them on a longer ride than they expected, but then they'll
never ride with me after that. :-(  I took one kid out and his parents
drove over to our house and told my husband, "I think your wife is out
riding with our son" Bill said, "Yup". Then they said, "It's dark and
they're not back" and Bill just said, "Yeah, she tends to do that". Last
time that kid ever got to ride with me. Another husband of a friend
called Bill and said, "Angie & Ruth went riding and they're not back. Do
you think we should go looking for them?" And Bill said, "If she's not
back by morning, we'll go looking for'em". Ruth's husband was just
dumbfounded but Bill was serious. That's why I'm so darned careful. I
know he wouldn't bother to come looking for a long time!

  =How much night training do you recommend before you compete in a 
ride that requires riding in the dark?

I just don't think that much about it. If you've gotta ride in the dark,
why not do it when they've got 80 miles or so under their belts and
they're mellow? :-)

  =Is it common to hallucinate while riding in the dark?

That's Jody's job. I'm the designated rider. :-) No hallucinations
here...but remember I'm the one who eats more during a ride than at a
family reunion.

  =Do you have any tips or techniques for dealing with scary 
situations (wild life or unusual noises) or trail obstacles in the 

Company. If my out time is 10 minutes before 2 other people heading out
in the dark, I'm going to wait on them. If theirs is 10 minutes before
mine I will beg and plead and offer to finish behind them, etc. if
they'll wait for me.

Angie McGhee


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!!