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Re: [RC] Tevis Endurance Story (This is not for anyone new to thissport) - Laney Humphrey

"Endurance" is really the right word for our sport but sometimes it refers to stuff other than the ride. Don't feel bad that you blew so many tires. I've done a lot of cross country driving hauling my horse and have learned to count of blowing tires, especially on the trailer. In fact, I always carry 2 spares now.
Thanks for sharing your story. I made it as far as Robinsons where a touch of the stomach flu ended my ride. I think I saw you on the ground and I did see the helicopter as me and my horse were being trailed out. I did wonder what had happened so I'm very glad to know that you're going to be ok. Bruises are so painful; I think a broken bone is almost better (not the spine though!!!).
Take care and heal well!

Alicia wrote:
This year was to be the year for me and 2 of my good friends from Georgia to try Tevis. We were going to drive from South Carolina to California! 3 friends from NC were to drive with us to help us crew. It started out an endurance drive. We first got stuck in traffic around St Louis and made it to our first destination 2 hours later than scheduled. Upon arrival there I was shutting a drop down window on the trailer when it did not catch and landed back on my head with the “door stop” catch on it hitting me, blood everywhere! I had a gash in my head for 2 days. The second day we were headed to Nebraska and again were delayed by two hours due to a defective tire blowing on the truck. It was 117 degrees on the road when we changed it!! The third day did go smoothly and we made it to Park City Utah. We rested there for an extra day. The fourth day we were headed for Nevada when we lost 2 trailer tires in the salt flats of Utah. We almost ran out of diesel in the truck and had sent our extra vehicle ahead because we knew we were running on fumes. FYI-2006 Chevrolet dually 350 has a 35 gallon tank. The instruction manual does not tell you this. We finally made it on the 7^th day to California and went and rode the first 7 miles of the Tevis trail from Robie Park. That was beautiful, and we really enjoyed our ride. Then it was onto Auburn where we rode last part of the trail on Wednesday. The no hands bridge was really cool. Wednesday night we decided to move to a farm outside of Cool CA. Beautiful farm, but we did not know that my friend’s 40” horse trailer would barely make it along the twisty road. Once arriving there a dog decided to bite my horse on the nose and then he about killed another dog. The horse was ok and the dog stayed tied the whole time we were there.

Thursday night we headed up to beautiful Robie Park. Everything was looking good for the ride finally. The morning of the ride was beautiful and was going well until about 5 to 6 miles out. There were 4 very narrow small wooden bridges to cross. On the 3^rd on we got bottle necked on the bridge. My horse got excited and started cantering in place. The next thing I knew was that we were going off of the side and he was landing on top of me! Knocked the breath out of me. My horse scrambled back up and ran off temporarily but kept coming back to find me. I finally caught my breath climbed up and lead him back to the highway near Squaw Valley. I decided I had come there to finish, so I got back on. Within a mile I could feel my back swelling. It felt like I had a double back from the waist to the middle of my butt. I rode on to Squaw high camp and somehow managed to get off an electrolyte my horse. I made it through the next checks even when I had to get off. I climbed cougar rock!! After I made it out of the boggy area I think this is before 20 miles, I did not feel to well. So I started galloping my horse, I knew he was strong and I told him I wanted to keep going. We galloped everything including cougar rock! When I made it to Robinson at 36 miles I could not get off. I knew his heart rate should be fine so I rode him to the tape where the vets were. I slid off of him and I was told that since I was hurting a crew could go with me to the vet.

While in line for the crew I dropped my helmet and the next thing I knew some nice lady in a red shirt was talking to me while I was laying on the ground. I really wanted to finish the ride, but when I tried to sit up I got “woozy” again. They said it was from the shock of the fall earlier. Since they could not get me to sit up they called for the ambulance which came and pumped some fluids into me. The ambulance ride was going to be too treacherous for my back; they thought I could have some fractures so they sent for the helicopter. The ambulance took me 2 miles down the road and the copter landed on the side of a mountain. He had trouble landing. (I was not scared until this point, I did not want to crash in a helicopter). I was taken to a hospital in Sacramento. And after 7 hours on the back board being strapped down they finally got me x-rayed to discover that I had not broken anything just really bruised my back. It is quite black and blue.

The worst thing about the whole incident was that my husband got a call from a relative in CA whose friend was also in Tevis, to say that I had collided with another horse and had fallen off of the trail and had been helicoptered out. They said I might be dead. As you can imagine this terrified my husband who had my Dad with him when he received the call. My crew had no reception on their phones so he did not know what had happened or if I was alive for a few hours.

I am doing ok, moving slowly and I am at home now. My husband flew me home, and my crew and my friends are driving my horse home across the US as I write this. I know you are wondering how my horse is. He is great. He had a little scrape on his left hind and pulsed in with a 50 after I galloped him in and got all A”s on everything else. I rider opted out, but I think Tevis only lists this as a pull.

We did have lots of fun driving across the country despite our mishaps and met lots of wonderful people. First of all I would like to thank all of the Tevis volunteers who helped me, the man who helped me with my splint boots and electrolytes at Squaw high camp, the girls who helped me wet my cool medic vest, and the wonderful boy David who trotted my horse and helped me get on at the stop before Robinson flat, the two nurses especially the one in the red tank shirt and Dr. Jim Fisher who helped me at Robinson Flat, I would like to thank the people who helped me get there Lynn Kenelly, Misty Mcadams, Sarah Engsberg, Ken Marcella, the friends along the way Will and Laura Marshall in MO, Butch and Louie in NE, Louise Mahoney in Utah and my wonderful crew who flew out Faith Connelly and Pam Haulbrooks, and most of all my dear friends who went with me and who are still driving home with my horse, Sandy and Samantha Thomson, Claude and Marion Brewer and Leonie Von Arnim. My two friends from GA did not make it either. The Jr Samantha was pulled before Robinson after her horse got a puncture wound in the rocky area of trail, and Sandy was pulled for a girth rub at 50 miles.

This was definitely an endurance trip and ride for me!

Alicia Mansuetti and Davanna Dave


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[RC] Tevis Endurance Story (This is not for anyone new to this sport), Alicia