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Tevis 2011: Haggin Cup Awarded to Riverwatch

Thehorse.com by: Marsha Hayes
October 10 2011, Article # 18943

On Oct. 9 the Tevis Cup committee presented the Haggin Cup--awarded annually to the horse judged most fit to continue by ride veterinarians--to Tevis Cup winner Jeremy Reynolds of San Jose, Calif., for the next-day condition of his mount, the 7-year-old bay Arabian horse Riverwatch.

Earlier in the morning eight of the top ten race finishers of the 100-mile endurance event presented their horses for evaluation by the Tevis veterinarians to determine which horse was "most fit to continue." Two of the top ten elected not to present for the award.

Led by head veterinarian Greg Fellers, DVM, the crew observed the horses as they were trotted in hand around a 60 foot circle outlined in the center of the Auburn, Calif., Fairgrounds. Horses also trotted a straight course, out and back, and veterinarians looked for any signs of lameness and rated the contestants' impulsion and attitude.

Each horse was also examined carefully for metabolic condition, hydration, and soreness.

Reynolds' 2011 win make for his third Tevis Cup and second Haggin Cup victory.

Of the more than 175 starters, 123 finished the ride, a 70% completion rate according to ride officials at the awards ceremony. Only 13 horses required veterinary treatment--less than half the usual number--and no horse experienced any serious problem, Fellers reported.

Fellers attributed the favorable rates to "near perfect weather."


Reynolds Wins Third Tevis Cup

Auburn Journal Auburn teenager Shackelford second
By Todd Mordhorst Auburn Journal

The route was different, but the results were quite familiar for Jeremy Reynolds at the Tevis Cup endurance ride Saturday.

The endurance horse trainer from San Jose rode to his third Tevis Cup Saturday evening. He completed the re-routed ride in 9 hours, 31 minutes, accounting for the two hours of required rest time.

The ride began in Auburn for the first time after heavy snow high in the Sierra left much of the trail too dangerous for the horses to navigate. Tevis Cup was postponed from its usual July start because of the unusually deep snow pack in the Sierra that lingered through the summer.

Reynolds won atop 7-year-old Riverwatch after winning Tevis in 2004 and 2007 on CV Eli.

“Today was a blast,” Reynolds said. “We had a good plan and we stuck to it. I knew I had a lot of horse left at the end. It was a fun day.”

Reynolds rode with 19-year-old Rachel Shackelford at the front of the field for much of the day before pulling ahead for good about 12 miles from the finish.

Shackelford finished second, wearing a broad smile as she rode into McCann Stadium and tearing up at the finish. The Placer High graduate and Lincoln resident rode BR Cody del Sol, a 17-year-old Arab who completed his final endurance ride in style.

“I had a great start and he knows the trail really well so once his nose was headed toward Auburn he knew what to do,” Shackelford said. “I’ve been riding him since I was 5. It was a big moment for us (at the finish) because I knew this was his last ride.”

Reynolds imparted some of his riding knowledge to Shackelford as they rode Saturday. The two met when Rachel was just 9 at the Fort Shelbourne Endurance Ride and they’ve ridden together several times since then. Shackelford was happy to be able to pick up some tips on her to the impressive result.

“He’s a good family friend and he was giving me some pointers along the way,” she said. “We had a great time.”

Reynolds said he was impressed by Shackelford’s maturity. She slowed down late in the race, sensing her horse’s fatigue.

“She put the horse first and I admire her for that – especially because she’s such a young rider,” Reynolds said.

Saturday’s victory was the latest and most prestigious in a series of impressive results for Reynolds, whose wife Heather is also a former Tevis winner. Reynolds has won rides each of the last three weeks, including the North American Endurance Team Championship in Plumas County.

Dennis Summers of Gifford, Wash. rode in just before 8 p.m. Saturday night to claim third place. Dayna Weary, from Prescott, Ariz., placed fourth, followed closely by Garrett Ford of Durango, Colo., and Scottsdale, Ariz. resident Clydea Hastie.

Riders have 24 hours to complete the ride and earn a coveted Tevis Cup completion buckle. The top 10 finishers are eligible for the prestigious Haggin Cup, which is awarded to the horse judged most fit to continue riding at the finish.

The Tevis Cup and Haggin Cup will be awarded today at the Gold Country Fairgrounds. There will be a barbecue at 1 p.m. followed by the awards ceremony at 2 p.m.

See Monday’s Journal for results of the Haggin Cup judging.

Full article, Auburn Journal


Foreign riders add international prestige to Tevis endurance ride

Auburnjournal.com - Full Article

10/7/11
By Gus Thomson, Journal Staff Writer

When South African endurance rider Charles Currie sets out on the trail with his horse near Johannesburg, he’s not dealing with mountains, rattlesnakes and mountain lions.

While he noted Wednesday that any African lions are safely in wildlife preserves far from his hometown of Pendale, he’s still watching for snakes on the trail – including deadly puff adders.

And the hills in his part of South Africa are not as steep as the Sierra Nevada peaks he’ll be crossing on his way from Squaw Valley to Auburn on Saturday.

The endurance ride – a magnet for long-distance equestrians that started in 1955 – has been a n elusive goal for Currie this year. In June, he was set to go, only to have the event postponed from July 16 to Oct. 8 because of snowy conditions in the mountains that organizers considered too dangerous for horses and riders.

Three months later, Currie is part of a field of 200 riders from across the United States and around the world ready to earn a prized Tevis finisher’s buckle – continuing the tradition of the ride as not only a national but international event.

This year’s roster includes riders from at least six foreign countries – Japan, Australia, Canada, South Africa, England and the Netherlands.

Currie, a steel fabrication company owner, said his interest in the Tevis ride was piqued when he saw an online photo at Endurance.net of a rider going over the ride’s landmark Cougar Rock – one of the most spectacularly scenic stretches of the ride and a favorite photo op for participants.

Needing a horse half a world away, Currie was steered toward 21-time Tevis finisher Potato Richardson, who has hosted riders and provided mounts for several foreign visitors at his Sliger Mine Ranch in Greenwood...

Read more here:
http://auburnjournal.com/detail/189899.html?content_source=&category_id=2&search_filter=&user_id=&event_mode=&event_ts_from=&event_ts_to=&list_type=&order_by=&order_sort=&content_class=1&sub_type=&town_id=


The Tevis Cup 100 Mile Endurance Ride

AZHorseranches.com - Full Story

by Kim Abbott on October 6, 2011

As the Tevis Cup approaches this weekend I can’t help but remember the times I rode this incredible ride. I have finished 5 out of 6 tries. The Day Tevis is held I will sit in front of my computer and think of every mile watching my fellow endurance riders travel down this historic trail. I can look at my watch and know where I might be if I were riding- this Saturday is no different- I will be watching all of you and wishing I were there on the back of one of my great horses, watching and praying for a safe journey to Auburn.

This is an article I wrote after the 2002 ride:

What they had done, what they had seen, heard, felt, feared- the places, the sounds, the colors, the cold, the darkness, the beauty. Till they died, this stream of memory would set them apart, if imperceptibly from anyone but themselves, from everyone else, for they had crossed the mountains……Bernard Devoto

Four amigos from Arizona set out to do what they had done before, what was in their blood, what will live in their memories forever, what they had to do again, the Tevis Cup Endurance Ride; 100 miles, one day, one horse, one rider. Tevis is the oldest and toughest endurance ride in the nation. As the 15,540 feet of ascending and 22,970 feet of descending lay ahead of them, they arrive in Robie Park almost a week ahead of the ride to help the horses recover from the trailer ride from Arizona.

The morning of July 20th came early as the riders saddled up for the journey ahead, they started down a narrow road struggling to position themselves along with 216 other riders, their ride began at5:15am. With the sound of the horn the ride began as their horses strained at the reins, and trotted to keep their position on the narrow trails of switch backs.

About 5 miles out they begin to climb Emigrant Pass the ski area of Squaw Valley. As they looked over their shoulder they could see their last view of the mighty Lake Tahoe. From the top, at 8,750 feet, they start down through the Chief Granite Wilderness which is a scattering of large rock boulders, bogs that will suck the shoes off the best shod horse, and fierce brush that is razor sharp.

The first trot-by is 21 miles into the ride, Lyon Ridge 6,500 feet in elevation. As they ascend the famous Cougar Rock they know they are one forth of the way to Auburn.

The crews and riders work frantically to get their horses through the vet check at Robinson Flat. This one hour hold is a welcome rest to both horse and rider, emotions rise and a tear can be seen in the eyes of the riders at the relief: they are fit to continue on their journey.

THE BEAUTY, THE COLORS, the riders and horses mentally prepare for the intensity of the canyons; three canyons await them on their journey to Forest Hill. The challenge of this section of the ride is not only the ascending and descending but also the swinging bridge, the narrowness of the trail, the view is ASTOUNDING! It is not for the weak of heart or mind or body. The drops from the 18 inch trail is hundreds of feet, so much so, one can not see the bottom, only the sound of the north fork of the Middle Fork of the American River can be heard along with THE SOUND of the beating hoofs. The fear of seeing where they came from and where they need to go is at times over whelming.

Although they had a 15 minute hold, and a bit of a break, at Michigan Bluff 63 miles in to the ride, trotting into Forest Hill and seeing their excited yet exhausted crew, was a sight for sour eyes. It felt as if the whole town came out to see the tired riders and horses. People went from strangers to your best friend as everyone raced to help the tired horses and riders. The fear of not passing the vet check loomed ahead. The stress in the air was thick, people, trailers, trucks of all variety, dazed and confused riders, horses tied up to a semi receiving fluids, and mounds of hay and feed were pilled everywhere, it was a real circus. One could see the tears of joy and the tears of defeat as the vets decreed the horses fit or not to continue. Crews were in put into action as if they had come to battle and a horn “charge” sounded. As day faded into night, the California Loop, the most dangerous section of the trail lay ahead. The horses feeling refreshed after the hour hold and the relief of the cool night temperatures, tugged at the reins, for they remembered the way home. In THE COLD, and THE DARKNESS, the riders could feel THE FEAR, that they had felt before, that they would feel again, as they journeyed the remaining 33 miles to Auburn...

Read more here:
http://azhorseranches.com/2011/10/06/the-tevis-cup-100-mile-endurance-ride/


Tevis competitors go with the flow

EDHTelegraph.com - Full Article 10/6/11
Foresthill’s Hackley siblings will tackle the ride after homecoming while veteran riders roll with changes
By Todd Mordhorst Journal Sports Editor

For a couple of heavily involved Foresthill High students, homecoming week means a whirlwind of activity. So when the Tevis Cup endurance ride was pushed back to Saturday from its usual July start date, the Hackleys had some decisions to make.

Despite the festivities at school, Rylee Hackley, a senior at Foresthill, and her sophomore brother Bryce could not pass up the chance to compete in endurance riding’s most prestigious event with their mother Peg.

“I was kind of surprised they both wanted to do this instead,” said Peg Hackley, who first rode Tevis at age 17 in 1973.

Rylee, a forward on the Wildfires’ basketball team, and Bryce, a member of the Foresthill football team, were busy Thursday night working on floats for tonight’s homecoming parade. After the festivities Friday night they’ll wake up early Saturday for a Tevis Cup ride that unusual snow severely altered.

The ride that began in 1955 has been held during the seventh full moon of the year, starting at Robie Park in Truckee. Heavy snow in the high country forced ride organizers to postpone the event this year. A storm that rolled through the Sierra Nevada mid-week left nearly two feet of snow in some places. The ride committee met Thursday afternoon and decided to change the route, starting it in Auburn and making it an out-and-back journey.

The wild weather left riders in limbo all week until the announcement Thursday...

Read more here:
http://edhtelegraph.com/detail/189919.html


Ten Facts about The Tevis Cup endurance ride

Horsechannel.com - Full Article

Here’s some interesting facts about America’s most well-known endurance ride.
By Leslie Potter
October 7, 2011

n Saturday, Oct. 8, approximately 200 riders will embark on a 100-mile ride for the Tevis Cup. Riders will attempt to journey from Lake Tahoe to Auburn, California in a single day. Here’s an overview of this landmark event.

1. Although most of us know it as The Tevis Cup, the ride’s official name is The Western States Trail Ride.

2. The ride has been held annually since 1955, except when it was canceled in 2008 due to wildfires in California.

3. The Tevis Cup is usually held in July or August, but was postponed this year due to unusually heavy snow along the mountainous route. This is the first time the ride has been held in the fall, and will bring cooler temperatures and have fewer hours of daylight than usual.

4. To successfully complete the ride, riders must finish the 100 miles in less than 24 hours. Riders begin the race at 5:15 am and the first riders typically cross the finish line around 10 pm. This finishing time includes mandatory rest stops and vet checks throughout the course in addition to the actual time spent on the course...

Read more here:
http://www.horsechannel.com/horse-news/2011/10/07/tevis-cup-facts.aspx


Tevis Start Location Changed to Auburn Fairgrounds!

Thursday October 6 2011

NEW START TIME AND LOCATION FOR THE TEVIS CUP: Due to the excessive snowfall in the high country and at the usual starting line of Robie Park on Wednesday and Wednesday night, the 2011 Tevis Cup will start and finish at the Gold Country Fairgrounds in Auburn. The start will be at 6:30am Saturday 10/8 and go up to Foresthill. Rider Check-In begins at 10 AM at the Fairgrounds on Friday 10/7. More details coming soon at http://www.teviscup.org/.


8 Inches of Snow Falls on Squaw Valley

Thursday October 6 2011

The first winter snowfall brought 8 inches of snow to the Sierra Nevada mountains around Robie Park and Squaw Valley through which the 56th annual Tevis Cup traverses. Starting time for the ride is scheduled for 5:15 AM Saturday October 8th.

The chance of snow drops to 40% today at Robie with a predicted high of 41*. Overnight temperature will be 23*; Friday calls for mostly sunny with a high of 53*, and ride day sunny and 64*.

A message from the Ride Director on the Teviscup.org website says, "Ride management is aware of the cold front preceding this weekend's ride. We are working to ensure that the ride camp and trails are ready regardless. We are staying informed with weather updates and the weather will not stop the event."


Tevis: Snowing at Robie Park

October 5 2011

With a winter storm warning in effect, snow has begun to fall in Robie Park in the Sierra Nevadas - the starting line of Saturday's Tevis Cup.

Wednesday's forecast for the Robie area is total daytime snow accumulation of 3-5 inches possible, with a west wind between 15 and 25 mph, gusting as high as 35 mph. Overnight the temperature will be around 27*F, with wind between 10-15 mph and new snow accumulation of less than one inch possible. By Thursday the chance of snow showers will decrease to 40%, with a daytime high of 36*. Friday should be mostly sunny and 50*F, while ride day, Saturday, should be sunny with a high of 58*F.

As of October 4, 190 horses and riders are pre-entered in the ride.

For updated entry list, more news, stories, and photos, see
http://www.endurance.net/international/USA/2011Tevis/


Tevis 2011: Date Change Means Cooler Competition Weather

Thehorse.com - Full Article

by: Marsha Hayes
October 03 2011, Article # 18909

When the Tevis Cup endurance competition kicks off at 5:15 a.m. on Oct. 8, more than 200 horse and rider teams will attempt to travel 100 miles from near Lake Tahoe, Calif., to Auburn, Calif., in 24 hours or less. Greg Fellers, DVM, veteran head veterinarian at the ride, will oversee a team of 16 additional American Endurance Ride Conference (AERC)-certified veterinarians to make sure the horses navigate the trek safely.

Traditionally held during July, heavy snowfall along the traditional route in California's High Sierra Mountains forced ride management to reschedule the event to October. Never before has the ride been held in the fall, and the date change brings both new concerns and potential advantages.

"The weather could about 20 to 25 degrees cooler than a traditional Tevis date, and there could be a problem with a hot, hardworking horse coming into vet checks and standing," Fellers said. "It will certainly behoove both riders and vets to expedite the (vetting) process as quickly as possible."

Should hot equine muscles cool too quickly or thoroughly, muscle stiffness could result and injuries are more likely, Fellers noted...

Read more here:
http://www.thehorse.com/ViewArticle.aspx?ID=18909


Snow Forecast for Robie Park on Wednesday

October 3 2011

With less than 5 days left in the countdown, the first winter storm of the season in the Sierra Nevada range will add an element of intrigue to the 56th Tevis Cup, which is being held for the first time in October, after being postponed from its regular July date because of too much late snow on the trails.

This is the official weather forecast by the National Weather Service for the Robie Park area (the Zero Milepost for the Tevis Cup).

The current forecast (as of Monday morning) shows a winter storm watch about 7000 feet, and indicates a 100% chance of snow on Wednesday, stating:

"HEAVIEST PRECIPITATION WILL FALL TUESDAY NIGHT INTO WEDNESDAY... WITH ACCUMULATING SNOWFALL IN THE HIGHER ELEVATIONS OF THE SIERRA. THOSE PLANNING TRAVEL OVER THE SIERRA THIS WEEK SHOULD PREPARE FOR WINTER CONDITIONS NOW TO AVOID BEING CAUGHT OFF GUARD BY THIS EARLY SEASON STORM.

* TIMING: HEAVIEST MOUNTAIN SNOW LATE TUESDAY NIGHT INTO WEDNESDAY MORNING...WITH SNOW SHOWERS CONTINUING INTO WEDNESDAY EVENING.

* POSSIBLE SNOW ACCUMULATIONS: UP TO 10 INCHES ABOVE 7000 FEET ALONG THE SIERRA CREST...WITH A FEW INCHES POSSIBLE AT LAKE LEVEL.

* WINDS: SOUTHWEST WINDS 20 TO 30 MPH WITH GUSTS UP TO 50 MPH. RIDGE GUSTS UP TO 90 MPH.

SNOW LEVELS: 8500 FEET FALLING TO 6000 FEET BY WEDNESDAY MORNING."

Chance of snowfall will taper off Wednesday into Thursday, with temperatures rising. The expected high Friday is 51*F and Saturday 59*F with mostly sunny skies.

This moisture from the snowfall should help to minimize the dust from the trail-bed from the hoof-beats of 206 horses.

The following link is for the approximate latitude & longitude and elevation of Robie Park, so that it is slightly different from Truckee or Squaw Valley.

http://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php?lat=39.236507954871094&lon=-120.1849365234375&site=rev&unit=0&lg=en&FcstType=text


178 Pre-Entries in Tevis

October 2 2011

With less than 6 days till the Start of the 56th annual Tevis Cup, 178 riders are signed up to ride. As of September 28, the starting list includes 2 Australians, 2 Japanese (including Mr Seiichi Hasumi, going for his 8th buckle in a row), 1 Canadian, 1 South African, 1 Netherlands, and 2 UAE riders.

Volunteers are still needed at the Foresthill Vet Check - minimum time frame is 3 PM to 10 PM on October 8. You can sign up on the Tevis.org website: http://www.teviscup.org/how-you-can-help/volunteering/ride-volunteer-signup-form or send an email to Joanne Hoefler directly: joannehoefler@hotmail.com.

See the entry list here


EquiSearch.com Launches Tevis Cup Blog with Endurance Rider Jenni Smith

PR.com

Award-winning website EquiSearch.com announces the launch of its new blog, “Journey to the Tevis Cup.” Jenni Smith, a competitor in the 2011 Tevis Cup, will chronicle her preparations for the grueling ride, which takes place October 8.

Gaithersburg, MD, September 30, 2011 --(PR.com)-- Held annually since 1955, the Tevis Cup (also known as the Western States Trail Ride) covers 100 miles of demanding terrain across the Sierra Nevada in California. Riders aim to complete the 100-mile ride in under 24 hours. In “Journey to the Tevis Cup,” Smith will cover all aspects of her preparations: Readers will learn about proper training, conditioning and care specific to endurance horses. Smith will also post videos from her training rides, giving readers an inside view into how she gets herself and her horse ready.

Smith, the director of brand marketing for Ariat International, began endurance riding in 2001 because of her love for Arabian horses, a breed that dominates the sport because of its stamina. She is approaching 2,500 American Endurance Ride Conference (AERC) miles, rides at the international level and is working on her FEI (International Equestrian Federation) four-star qualification. An experienced Tevis competitor, Smith has attempted the ride seven times, finished five times and finished in the top 10 in both 2002 and 2003. This year she will ride BA Bearcat, a 16-year-old Egyptian Arabian, owned by Barry Waite and Jennifer Nice.

“I hope the blog is enjoyable to read and gives interested readers - from those who think ‘someday maybe’ to those who think ‘no way ever!’ but are curious about it just the same - some insight into what it’s like to be caught up in the whirl that is Tevis,” Smith says. Smith will blog in the weeks leading up to the October 8 ride and blog post-ride about her experience.

To read the “Journey to the Tevis Cup” blog or subscribe to the RSS feed, visit http://blogs.equisearch.com/jennismith/.


Horses' health is primary concern during Tevis Cup 100-mile ride

Sacbee.com - Full Article

By Sam McManis The Sacramento Bee
smcmanis@sacbee.com

Much as we might be inclined to anthropomorphize horses – Mr. Ed, anyone? – much as we'd like to put faith in rugged-as-Robert Redford "horse whisperers" to intuit deep meaning from every neigh or nod, the sad fact is that even the elite equine athletes in the Tevis Cup 100-Mile Trail Ride are sorely lacking in one important area.

"They don't talk," said Garrett Ford, last year's winner of the Haggin Cup, awarded to the top-10 finisher in the Tevis whose horse was judged as best conditioned. "That, obviously, is the challenge."

Oh, but think how much easier caring for and racing endurance horses would be if a common interspecies language were indeed possible.

They could tell riders and race veterinarians when, and exactly where, they are hurting...

Read more here:
http://www.sacbee.com/2011/09/29/3945848/horses-health-is-primary-concern.html


Tevis Cup Gallops into Auburn

Auburnjournal.com - Full Article

9/21/11

Autumn start is unprecedented for 100-mile endurance ride
By Sara Seyydin Journal Staff Writer

Tevis Cup riders may be from different walks of life, but they share a common addiction.

They live for seeing the Sierra whiz by them on horseback, leaving billowing dust clouds in their wake, while forging an unforgettable bond with a natural athlete.

The 100-mile endurance horse ride, from Tahoe to Auburn, features some of the most unforgiving terrain, yet continues to call to them year after year. Riders, like endurance trainer Janine Esler, of Granite Bay, continue to test themselves, and their horse, for 24-hours, against the elements.

The reward? A silver buckle — and a challenge that never seems to get old.

Esler said Tevis continues to thrill her, even nearly a decade after her first ride.

“I thought it was the most frightful thing I had ever done, but addicting. I finished smack on 24 hours. I didn’t have a second to spare,” Esler said. “Since then I have completed seven buckles and a very close completion. I call it my elusive eighth buckle.”

During that race Esler’s horse got stuck in a thorny berry bush about half a mile before the finish. A testament, she said to the unpredictability of the race. Last year, Esler finished fourth on Cool resident Diana Lundy’s horse, C.R. Sampson.

“He was the first horse to start dead last and place in the top 10,” Esler said. “We kind of made a little bit of history there.”

This year’s race, scheduled for Oct. 8, should be even more unpredictable than usual, according to Esler. Unusually heavy snow-melt, caused race organizers to push the race back from its original date in July. The unprecedented move means riders will be traveling in darkness for an extra couple of hours, and experience cooler temperatures.

Esler said she isn’t sure the pros of an autumn race will outweigh the cons.

“The light isn’t going to be out until approximately 7:30 (a.m.). We will be at High Camp before we see any light. I personally am very unexcited about it. It presents things that could be extremely dangerous to your horse. An extreme challenge will be the cold,” Esler said. “We are starting approximately in the teens, normally we start in the 50s. When horses are cold, they are far more reactive.”

She said the cooler temperatures should make for a pleasant ride going down the Canyon from Foresthill, but will certainly be different than the hot, dusty conditions the ride is renowned for...

Read more here:
http://auburnjournal.com/detail/188348.html?content_source=&category_id=&search_filter=tevis+cup+gallops+into+auburn&user_id=&event_mode=&event_ts_from=&event_ts_to=&list_type=&order_by=&order_sort=&content_class=1&sub_type=&town_id=


2011 Tevis: 2 Weeks 3 Days Away!

Riders and horses are gearing up for the 56th annual Tevis Cup, which will be held October 8.

Agenda for Ride week can be seen here.

The checkpoint card for riders can be seen here.

166 riders are pre-entered as of September 1st - you can see the list here: http://www.teviscup.org/index.php/news/2011-tevis-cup/2011-tevis-cup-rider-list

More information can be found at the Tevis website:
http://www.teviscup.org/


2011 Tevis: Ride Director's Report

www.teviscup.org/

September 16 2011

The 56th annual Western States Trail Ride will run on an autumn day, which is unprecedented. I would like to discuss some things to consider as you prepare for your ride.

October 8 will present 2 fewer hours of daylight than you would have on a midsummer’s day. Your trail will have morning glowsticks most of the way to High Camp (about 13 miles out) as sunrise will occur at 7:06 bringing a breaking dawn at around 6:15. Our start is set for 5:15, and you may expect chilly predawn temperatures as low as the teens. The bridges on the way to Hiway 89 could be frosty, so they will be sanded for traction. We are going to ask that all riders cross the bridges at a walk for safety.

The trail has been adjusted to take out Bald Mt. and the Pucker Point loop after Robinson Flat. Riders will go down Road 43 instead. This trail change is intended to get the riders through the canyons in the daylight. The cutoff times will be 30 minutes earlier at each point from Last Chance to Francisco’s and 15 minutes earlier at Lower Quarry. The rider card has this year’s mileage and cutoff times updated for your reference. The official timed finish is at 5:15 under the banner in McCann Stadium. Riders will arrive at the finish by using the Pioneer Express trail which loops south around the skateboard park at the overlook. This trail turns left approximately100 yards short of the staging area and crosses under Pacific Avenue with a right turn along the railroad tracks, then back toward the north to the traditional railroad crossing at Pacific Avenue.

The top 20 horses will get a “place holder” finish card on the Pioneer Express trail on a wide gravel stretch before the Pacific Avenue undercrossing. After crossing the “place holder” finish line, riders will hold their order of finish in McCann Stadium.

The trail committee has been logging many hours of work widening, leveling, pruning and generally improving safety on our trail. You will be impressed.

October 8 falls on the third week of the 2011 deer season. We have posted signs cautioning hunters of the presence of horses and riders for the portion of the trail from Hodgson’s Cabin to Last Chance. It would be a good idea if riders planned to wear brightly colored clothing for added visibility.

The Western States Trail Ride has never been run in October before, and we will be sharing the fairgrounds with some pretty festive events; namely, The Music Fest, Octoberfest, and a gun show (scheduled for Sunday). Parking will be tight and our stabling will not be available until September 28. If you are traveling a great distance and need to arrive in the Auburn area before this date, please contact the Tevis office for assistance in locating stabling as we have some options available.

As you can see we have been planning for many eventualities to make the 56th Annual Western States Tevis Ride as memorable and incredible as ever. Keep training and check back to our website for any future updates.

Chuck Stalley
2011 Ride Director