Tuesday night I didn’t sleep well (yet, despite this, I still woke feeling SUPER rested – thanks Vit. D3 (&& Funder for bringing D3 to my attention this past spring)). I kept dreaming of hoof boots and the race and failure and success and whether or not I had all my logistics in order.
See, I rode Q on some of the trails on Sunday. They’ve recently put gravel on a lot of old logging roads that were just dirt, and the erosion on some of the others has reached epic proportions unearthing lots of rocks in the process. While I haven’t had to boot Q’s back feet yet, I definitely realized I would need them for the race. …I found this out < a week before the ride. Oi vey.
Fortunately, I do have boots that fit her back feet – or marginally so. Well, I guess more than marginally, but just not perfectly. I’ve bought athletic tape and vet wrap to see which will work best around her hoof pre-boot application and I plan to test this out on some mini rides over the next few days across various terrain. She will be going out with Renegades on the front and Easyboots with pads on the back. I’ve lunged her on the flat with the rear boots, and they really do seem to fit well, but they come off far easier than I hear an Easyboot should come off when it comes time to remove them, so I’m going to wrap her hooves before I wrap that sucker of a boot around her feet. The last thing I need is a boot flying off on the hill!
Speaking of hill, the hills on this ride are gnarly! When I rode the ride 5 years ago the trails were quite different. Portions are the same, but mostly different now. On the 18 mile loop alone a rider is going to gain 3,000 feet of elevation. Oi vey! Supposedly, if you can complete our 30 mile LD with ease, you’re ready for an easy-intermediate 50; and if you can complete our 50 mile endurance, you’re ready to try an easy-intermediate (though no 100 is “easy” per se) 100 miler. Go figure. Fortunately, I train on similar-esque turf at home – just sans the SUPER steepness.
I WILL be walking her down the hill I experienced Sunday. The uphill we did was steep, but short and sweet and she recovered quickly. I won’t have one for this ride, but I do plan on purchasing a crupper adaptor for my saddle from Running Bear and training her to a crupper for future rides.
Oh, additionally, Sunday’s ride helped me to note that I am not deathly allergic to stings from hornets. When I did the endurance ride LAST TIME (5 years ago) I was stung by them. That was the last time I’d been stung. Well, clearing trail on Sunday presented me with the opportunity to be stung AGAIN. SEVEN. TIMES. This means I shouldn’t get stung for another bajillion years, right? Two stings resulted in a 5 year hiatus, so this means that with seven I should get about 17.5 years, right? Wishful thinking. On a comical note, they stung me through my leggings (no horses were stung, lucky Q) and got my ass pretty good. SIGH.
I leave this afternoon for ride camp. D is taking Q out when she leaves (sometime this morning) and I will arrive no later than 3p. I’m super psyched and pretty sure all my logistics for myself, Kenai, and Q are in order. I shall update everyone on the whole experience when I return! Wish us success and safety in our first LD! (With any luck we will be attending our next race (25 mile LD in Ohio) in a little over a month! …maybe I’ll find Endurance Granny and the Spotted Wonder there as it’s near their neck of the woods!)