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[RC] Why not 100's? - David LeBlanc

I hate to interrupt the regularly scheduled flame-war with something less
controversial, but the question has been asked - why do people not do 100's?

All I've seen so far is a bunch of really experienced riders who can't
figure out why there is a decline. Why not ask those of us who haven't done
it? Maybe there's some answers there.

So I'll go first - why I haven't done a 100. My horse and I have almost 2000
miles together, and we've done 4 2+ day rides, one 3 days for 160 miles. I
think we could do a 100. So why not?

1) I only have the one horse for myself - he'd need a lot of time off after
a 100, and I'd rather do a couple of 50's. Maybe in a year or two, I'll have
a backup horse, and this would be more practical.

2) Having done 2 75's, a 100 miles is really a long way.

3) I'd rather do multidays. Hanging out at John and Steph's for a week is a
lot of fun. A multiday allows me to go out, wrap up a 50, and then stop and
correct any issues that come up - then go ride some more a day or two later.

4) A 100 is a lot of eggs in one basket. Completion rates are low.

5) I don't think my horse is in condition to do a 100 at the start of the
season. It's wet on our side of the Cacades winter and spring, so we start
slow. The only 100 in our region late in the year is supposedly a good first
100, but an otherwise boring ride and this year it's right before Owyhee.

Maybe one day I'll do a 100 - I'd like to do that. But a medallion isn't
going to get me to do it. I'm only interested in awards that mesh with my
overall goals. For example, a PNER award is called the Sandybaar - it's for
10 rides of consecutive completions, same rider, same horse, any distance.
I'm proud we've done that, and I might even put in an extra ride to go from
9 to 10.

Another aspect is the ride manager - they have to stay up late, vets have to
work late and cost more. I'd say if you want more 100's, give incentives to
the ride manager. That would probably be more effective than trying to work
on the riders. Out of the factors I just listed, I don't think AERC can help
me overcome very much of it. AERC might be able to help the RMs more. Might
be a good thing to figure out just what the problem really is before setting
about solving it.

Just some thoughts. I very likely won't respond to the list replies on this,
but may in private e-mail.


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