I'm so proud of Baby Girl. She's an angel from heaven.
Honey Creek was a huge success for us. The trails were tough and beautiful. We crossed an actual river.
The White Oak River. Four times.It was terrifying. The water was belly deep at best and dropped off suddenly in places. There was a safe path of shallow (relatively speaking) water that led across. If you fell off the path, you fell into water deep enough to swim in. The bottom was strewn with huge rocks too! I don't know how we didn't get a foot caught! The White Oak was 40 feet across and took an excruciatingly long time to cross.
We rode into caves and under natural rock formations. The rocks were a sight to behold. There were boulders the size of houses. Naturally, this meant the trails were rockier than expected. Baby Girl only had shoes in the front. She was so ouchy Saturday afternoon I had to get the farrier-on-call to put backs on her. She couldn't even walk on hard ground, even after the shoes. The next morning, we had a soundness trot on GRAVEL. I thought we were done for... But by some miracle, Baby Girl wasn't a bit lame. She didn't take a lame step for the rest of the ride.
The vet judge, Stephanie, is amazing. She was the judge at Uwharrie, Baby Girl's second ride. She said Baby Girl was getting a lot more consistent and complimented us highly on an in-hand obstacle that involved us backing around a maze of rocks. Stephanie told me she always liked me and Baby Girl as a pair, even back at Uwharrie. Compliments from her mean the world to me.
She also gave us a whole lot of "excellents" on our horse card. Baby Girl finished the ride with a 97 and 12 pluses.
That's amazing. She lost two points on fill in the back legs and one point on gut sounds.
Baby Girl's P&Rs were also epic. She got a zero and eight once. She didn't even breath in those 15 seconds they counted. And a heart rate of eight is about the lowest you can reasonably get. The rest of her P&Rs were three and nines. Pretty good!
My horsemanship card also came out super clean, with a score of 98. I lost one point at check in for running ahead of my horse when I was trotting in hand (a stupid error!) and another for bracing my legs ahead when I rode down hill (very true! Gotta work on it!).
Baby Girl completed every obstacle asked of us with flying colors. There was a back, back in hand around rocks, stand and tie a ribbon on a tree, two judged mounts, navigating a difficult hill, and crossing several creeks.
Of course, we got double blues.
The real kicker was that we also got a breed award. Best spotted saddle horse! There were a dozen there, and my humble mare beat them all! A five-year-old in her first year completing and a kid rider curb stomped
I was going to go to King's Mountain in two weeks, but I'm done. I'm resting on my victory. Baby Girl deserves some time off. I checked the national website. Baby Girl has accrued 180 competitive miles, and, due to my riding other horses while BG was out, I have stored up about 220. As a team, Baby Girl and I are first in the region by a long shot and third in the nation. Drink to that!