ridecamp@endurance.net: [endurance] Twin Oaks Charity Challenge (long...story)

[endurance] Twin Oaks Charity Challenge (long...story)

Rebecca Hackworth (bechack@cnsii.com)
Mon, 15 Jul 1996 23:23:32 -0700

This was a new ride for the SW region, the second new one this year. I was
unable to make the other, and I almost didn't make this one. Both of the
other adult riders I go with were unable to attend. So without not as much
conditioning time as has been our usual, I decided to go anyway.

Notice I said adult riders...that left me with two of my kids. Call it
being a "good mother" or just admit me to the assylum as a total nut case.......

Well 590 miles later, ( + the 25 miles of the ride ) I am still here to talk
about it ( of course we will see if I can string my sentances in a coherent

I set my alarm for 5:30 ON MY DAY OFF, got up and finished packing the
camper with the food. The biggest fear is that I didn't have my partner
going with me( we always forget different things) is that I would forget
something important and not have my usual backup. I triple checked
everything I had planned to take. Yes, I got everything...?

Got to the horses, fed, cleaned pens, then loaded the tack. That was a
bigger fear. Charla's trailer has the tack room., and all those important
little extras, mine doesn't have a tack room., so everything goes into the
trunk and in the back of the camper. Thank goodness for the crew-cab. Got
the trailer on in one try, easy to do without the camper, but can be quite a
chore with it in the way!!! Was shooting for 8:00pull out, made it by
8:15!!! I was so happy. Stopped by the feed store and the bale of hay DID
fit on the side of the trailer!!! Yeah!! Left feed store by 8:30. Now
we're truckin'.

No problems on the road trip, everyone is behaving themselves well...kids
and horses...and after two gas stops and a blow through at Burger King, we
are just blasting down the road...but this trip is taking longer than I was
hoping. Just as I was passing a semi up a grade, I see the only sign for my
turn off....a very tiny sign...thank goodness I had time to pass the
truck...get over ...and off...and made my turn with horses in one piece.
Just when I wasn't real sure I was where I wanted to be, I recognized 3 rigs
parked on the side....OK!

Now for the last 18 miles...down a narrow twisty windy trail of a road...at
least it was paved! That took 45 minutes...We got in about 3:00. Not too
bad... plenty of time to rest and set up check in, cook, clean, do the
laundry....wait a minute...isn't that what I am trying to escape from!!! Oh
well, better that getting in 5 minutes before the ride meeting...been
there...done that...

As I got out of the truck with the air conditioning...this blast of hot
humid air blasts me...and no breeze at all.. It did finally cool down
about midnight. For the first time, I got into my riding outfit and nothing
extra to keep warm in the predawn, I was even sweating tacking up. A bad
sign. My cantle bag is ripped, so I only have my pommel bag for water...not
enough...Heather's off billet isn't the right one, so I make one out of the
extra long billet I did pack ( score 1 point for Mom )

The start to Vet check#1 was only 7.5 miles, but I was off my horse 2-3
times for a slipping cinch, a fallen saddle bag, a leaking water bottle (
had a hole in it ) a dead vet card (in with the leaking bottle) and someone
pouting about trail positions, the pony was full of it ( his first ride )
"Mom he isn't listining to me" (her first ride) and all of this before the
first vet check. I was now beginning to regret my decision to bring both of
them. This portion of the trail was supposed to be where we were going to
make time, because the second leg was what everyone was worried about. Well
the 1st let was a 6 mile gentle climb, but a climb all the way. Vet #1 went
OK with an extra 10 minutes the let the buckskin stop panting. She was fine
the rest of the day, scores only got better as we went. Boy getting 3
horses through the checks takes it's toll on your nerves.

The second leg we didn't plan to make much time, but we did fine. There was
a series of swichbacks up the mountain that did give you some spectacular
views. The photos were at the top, they even came out well. Then there
was the 1st water Gina drank. It was straight out of a mountain spring.
Nice and cool, and the horses wore more than they drank, then we walked in
to vet#2. A drink and P&R and an all clear from the vet and all was well.
Oh yeah, I did forget the snacks for the kids. Now they were getting hot
tired hungry and cranky. My fault. After leaving vet#2, Heather gets a
side ache after the lemonade at the watering hole...come to find out she
didn't eat breakfast!!! Now she is yelling at the horse because Babe is
trotting and gigging down the trail, it's all down hill, and her side ache
is getting worse. Well we finally made it through that crisis, but any
thoughts of making up time vanish.

Well I put Heather and Babe in front so Babe would stop gigging and give
Heather's side a rest, and it worked, and Heather saw the 3 ribbons and made
the turn through the woods just great. We hadn't gone 100 feet when the
group in front of us came from another trail, and then followed us. Heather
had made the right choice when 5 adults had missed it... (score another
point for Mom...this kid listened) So we buzzed down the trail as best we
could. Single track for a couple of miles. Then it was back to fire road.
If you like fire road through the woods, there was plenty to go around. The
footing was good all day, even on the single track.

The group of adults passed us at the end of the single track, never to be
seen again. We now had to make our way down the mountain. The next 9 miles
I thought would never end. I was on the verge of tears a couple of times.
The"gee Mom, when are we going to get there" was driving me crazy. This was
a new ride to all, but base camp was hidden until you were less than 1/2
mile away. Most of the rides you can tell when you are getting there long
before you get there. Milage markers would have helped SOOOOOO much, if
only to entertain the kids.

Well we finally trudged into base camp and were at criteria with 10 minutes
to spare. WE MADE IT I was so tired, I was ready to drop. So I took care
of the the horses and kids instead of me...oh the joys of motherhood. So we
got everyone taken care of, and vettted in and took a short break, and were
on the road again. We got home after tucking in the horses, and I got a
real shower and tucked ME in at 11:30, just enough time to get back up at
5:30 so I could go back to work Sunday morning. Oh the joys of the working
poor. I won't do that again on a far away ride, only the closer ones.

PS I forgot to mention the herd of cows that visited the camp all night
long. That made it interesting.

Things I learned.

1) Bring more fluids for the people

2) Bring more fluids for the horses. The hose was downhill, and water is HEAVY


4) Condition more

5) Don't work the next day

6) Keep smile on face :-)

Happy Trails All, and yes, we will see you next month at Bear Valley. But
this time Charla is coming!!!!!

and thanks for stopping by Jim Mitchell (sp) a netter that stopped by Fri
eve to say Hi... I hope you finished well

Becky Hackworth on Gina
Heather Hackworth on Babe age 9, who will have the necessary 500 miles to
ride alone before she is old enough to ride Tevis at all!!!
Katie Hackworth on Cocoa age 12, 1st ride. maybe this is fun after all.