Rabbit Run 50 mile endurance ride
This weekend was the Rabbit Run AERC endurance ride, which is held in the pine barrens of central New Jersey. The ride is notorious for horrendous weather (last year it was 21 degrees at the start, the year before we got 2 inches of rain during the ride), but this year the weather gods were smiling! After a week of record high temperatures, I loaded Dream at 8:30am Friday and it was already 62. The drive wasn't too bad and I arrived early enough to find a good parking spot at camp.
Now for a fun question.. how many trucks do you see in this picture? Can you find 4?
Having trouble? That may be because my truck and trailer could have fit inside the trailers of the people I was parked beside!! (The black rig on the left is my bf Dean's).
The high on Friday was 78, so I was actually wandering around in shorts, which was pretty surreal. It was so warm, I decided not only to braid Dream, but to clip her neck (she's still in partial winter coat).
Ride morning was clear and warm. Rain was forecast for later in the day, but you would never have known it at the start.
The ride is generally nothing but sand and pine trees. Excellent footing for the most part (some of the sand can get deep), so the ride is generally a very fast one (winning times can be in the low 4 hour range). I wanted to do the ride in 5-5.5 hours.
Dream ate like a champ all day in the holds. I think she and George (Dean's gelding) were having as good a time as Dean and I were.
The second loop held more sand and pine trees. But we also got to play in the bog a bit!
The last hold, it started to threaten to rain but it was still so warm, we actually didn't mind the idea of a shower (high was 66, which is something like 15 degrees above average).
The last loop in Jersey is always tough, as you are over sand and pine trees and the lack of terrain change means your muscles are screaming for mercy. But you put on a good face and just count down the remaining miles.
In the end, Dean and I crossed the finish line tied for 8th place (out of 41 starters) in a ride time of 4:59:42. After the ride, we both stood for Best Conditioned, but knew we had little chance of getting it having come in so far behind the front runners. Didn't matter to us though, as it was a great start to the season!
A well-deserved rest after the ride:
SIGH. I need a trailer.
The hackamore in the picture looks like a red version of the one I've ordered!
Off topic - How do you train for the long rides? By doing long rides only?
Dawn that is fantastic!!! Looks like you and Dean were having a great time. Dreams looks fabulous in her Taylored Tack.
I thought about you yesterday while I was riding in Ebenezer wishing I had the cajones to ride endurance!!!!:lol::lol::lol: One of these days!!!
Congratulations on a great ride!
I am so jealous! You look like you are having a great time.
Do you and your friend always stay together? You said that you tied for 8th.
I was just wondering if you get in some last minute competition with Dean.
I wish that I were physically able to ride like you do.........
you made it :) i went down for the 10mile conditioning on sunday to kinda prepare in a smaller sense and the weather held up pretty nicely for us aswell...
hopefully me and the boys will be in better condition for the 30 mile to see you at the real events :p
glad you guys had fun :)
I was wondering if you had been there. Glad you made it to the Bunny Hop! Did you enjoy the trail?
What do you have planned next? Foxcatcher LD is in April.. :D
i had a ton of fun. it definitely helped me mentally prepare/ not scare me away from the 30 milers :) plus it helped me figure out some little tricks..and everyone was so nice and helpful...thank goodness :)
the trail was nice, we only did 10 miles so it really didn't phase us much but i did find some little quirks i need to work on before we go to the big 30.
i am not sure whats next still trying to figure out everything ... but definitely excited to try a real event :) hopefully foxcatcher if i get the quirks fixed then i will see you there :)
I chickened out of foxcatcher, one look at the route of pulling a horse trailer through washington DC and Baltimore was enough for me. I will be doing Meherrin River ( a fun ride) that weekend with Patrick SC as a weather backup plan. I have registered for my first 50 at the Biltmore estate in NC
Biltmore is very nice from what I have heard, certainly the pictures of the estate are gorgeous. Look forward to hearing your ride report.
I guess you decided against doing the LD at No Frills in April, if you are going to Biltmore in early may?
yeh only a week apart. I think it would be to much
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