We're set to leave bright and freakin' early on Friday for the No Frills ride and I'm nowhere near ready. I've got my lists made and general idea of what I need etc. etc., but I'm not packed or anything. In many ways, this is due to the fact that I've camped several times already this year. I've got all my camping things figured out (most are always in my car), I know what meals I tend to always go to for food, and I know what my horse needs as far as all the basics go.
But its a real ride/race weekend! Shouldn't I be freaking out a little more? Prepping a little more intensely? Worrying about the amount of conditioning or lack thereof Q and I have put in pre-ride? Will all of these worries smite me the night before?
It's hard to say.
I've done what I was able with the weather and time available to me to get her conditioned. The gear we'll be using has been tested and proven. All four of those little hoofies have been trimmed. Renegades fit perfectly. A nice bale of alfalfa has been obtained. Additional hay, grain, minerals, probiotics, and e-lytes have been gathered. Buckets and tubs and containers for water have been obtained. My clothes have been thought out and packed. Kenai's crate (a lofty Newfie-sized crate!) is packed along with his accoutrements.
Will it be some crazy-fast ermahgerd go ride? Nope. Are we ready to complete within time soundly? Yep. Will it be really fun to gallivant through the GW-Jeff forest? Oh hell yes. Does the weather look awesome? Mmhmm, partly cloudy and in the lower 70s! Am I going to be traveling with and camping with one kickass endurance mentor? You betcha. (We're going with a FEI rider who has raced in Europe before ^.^)
It sounds as if the vet check/hold is away from basecamp and that they're providing us lunch/snacks there. Dunno how that'll bode for Q's food (??!!) but I'll be okay. It'll just be a day of encouraging Q pony to eat as much as possible on the trail just in case our stuff doesn't make it over to the check. With the slow pace I have planned, that shouldn't be a problem.
I think my plan for a slow pace that should be more than accomplishable is why I'm not freaking about this ride much. I know what a 4.5 mph pace is like. Its what my gallivanting in the woods lately has been like. I can definitely keep that kind of a pace and more. Its an easy and fun pace for Q. Knowing her attitude on rides with other horses though she'll probably step up her game. Knowing my horse. Knowing myself. Knowing the similarity of the terrain to our norm. These are reasons I'm calm.
I'm calm. Q's head has been screwed on pretty well lately. I think things look pretty promising! All I really want to do is get out and enjoy the GW-Jeff on horseback on a pretty spring day while finishing a 30 mile ride within the time limit on a happy, healthy horse. I think we should be able to accomplish that. =)