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We had a ride last weekend up at Huntersville State Forest. The leaves were about peak and weather was lovely except for a little drizzle Friday evening and Saturday morning.

Saturday I rode Comet in the 30 mile LD ride with DH riding Jake (in his first ride of the year) and our friend C and her horse Diamond. Despite a lost stirrup (C), hornet sting (DH) and smashing a leg into a tree (me on the literal knee knocker trail) we had a great time and finished with plenty of time to spare.

Since this ride also holds the one MN 100 mile ride for the year (so the vets have to be up all night anyway) they also offer a night 25 mile LD. They already put LED lights out since this is the last loops for the 75's and 100s so they start an LD at 4:30 letting everyone ride the first loop in the daylight and the second in the dark. Our friend M has had to recently retire her horse and has been sad about that so I offered her Stitch for the evening and I rode Chico. We rode with C and Diamond again (they did 55 miles that day!), her son A and his horse Salli, and friend K and her mare Patches (who is also 20 and has been off most of this year due to several health problems). We had a fantastic time, nothing like trusting your horse to cruise through the woods at a fast trot when you can't see anything and all horses finished with comments from the vets about how great they looked!

DH and I unmarked trail on Sunday using our Ranger since my knee (see above tree incident) wasn't up to another day of riding but we lent Comet and Chico to some friends for a novice ride. Chico placed 2nd! (Comet was ridden by a friend who wasn't eligible for rankings in the novice ride but he finished looking great).

Lots of fun, great friends, and great weather for our favorite ride.
 

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I gained a new respect for those of you who ride endurance. @phantomhorse13 @QueenofFrance08 and @all the others. I don't know how you do it.
Water Sky Plant Plant community Azure
Sky Water Working animal Beach Horse
Cloud Sky Plant community Plant Natural landscape
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Raven and I trailered out with a friend and her horse to Old Headquarters Lake Campground. We went on a 23 mile ride yesterday (I didn't really expect it to be quite that long) and by the end I was no longer having any fun whatsoever! If the farrier wasn't coming today I would still be in bed.

BUT, it was worth it because we did this......That is Lake Superior! A twelve mile ride got us there. We hung out, played and had lunch, and then we took a ten mile "shortcut" back to the trailer. We made it back just before sunset (I had headlamps with me just in case it didn't work out that way). Everyone was extremely happy to finally see the parking lot!
 

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@weeedlady , I know what you mean, I think my aspirations top out at limited distance/25 milers. That's plenty! It's fun to be a part of a 100, but not have to be the one in the saddle.

We did a short ride before work yesterday and it was just gorgeous. The pictures are better than anything I could possibly say about them 😉
Plant Horse Light Working animal Tree

Plant Sky Horse Tree Working animal

Plant Sky Light Botany Tree

Plant Sky Horse People in nature Natural landscape

Plant Horse Ecoregion Working animal Nature

Today is a copy of yesterday, so hoping for another short ride this afternoon. Unfortunately it's supposed to cloud up for the long weekend, but the rain should hold off. We have some folks I've met through endurance coming up for horse camping here this weekend; they're going to do a fall foliage ride Saturday and I think I'm taking them out to show them around on Sunday. Should be fun!

We crossed over the 400 mile mark yesterday. Total 2021 miles: 400.7
 

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I have ridden nearly every day this week. I told my sister I would help out the drill team at their last two rodeos of the year so I’m conditioning Skip some. I live in the country so have the country back roads to ride on, but arenas are few and far between here. I’ve been trotting him up and down the hills on the side of the road but I’ve always been scared to let him lope along the road…fear of holes I can’t see, he’s lazy and drags his right front some, ending up tripping. Farrier is coming tomorrow and he definitely needs to be done. But the last two times I’ve ridden, I bit the bullet and let him go! Not a long way, but enough to prove to myself I could do it! Woohoo! Not bad for an old lady over 60


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I have ridden almost every weekend this summer thanks to a drought in my area. Now when the riding is really good we get rain! I did manage a short ride with a friend on Saturday and my ride Sunday was cancelled due to rain. But we really need the rain so I am not going to complain. No pictures but it was great riding with a friend
 

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@egrogan , did you get your Virtual Tevis shirt yet? I was surprised to get mine already. I like it! @weeedlady , I hope you enjoy your shirt when you get it! Yay!!!! It was a very fun activity to do, and I enjoy wearing the shirts and remembering how fun it was. Thank you @CaliforniaDreaming for getting me involved! Thank you, @egrogan for taking the photos and pretending you were doing the challenges! Did I miss anyone this year? If I missed someone who is doing it, please let us know how it went, what was fun, and when you completed.

A few weeks ago, I had a horse chiropractor come out and adjust all 4 of my horses. My Chorro appeared to be clearly out and I was fairly certain he would benefit from an adjustment. The others I had done just because it's a good thing to do. Chorro was out, and the adjustment helped him tremendously. What surprised me was how much smoother Isabeau gaited after the adjustment. She's always been super smooth, but now she is more amazing than ever! I rode her 2 hours this morning and just couldn't get over how lovely her corto was!
 

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@knightrider, I don't have mine yet, but I haven't been to the post office in a few days so I hope it's there waiting for me! I've seen a few people post pictures on the Virtual Tevis FB page and it looks like a cute shirt. It really was a fun challenge, I'm also glad that all of you here on HF shared your experiences from last year, which made me want to give it a try this year!

Fizz will actually have the chiropractor see her tomorrow (as well as get fall shots done, not as fun for her). The last couple of weeks I've felt at times that she's bracing her back so I'm very curious to hear what the vet finds, and hopefully we will end the season with Fizz feeling very comfortable.

We rode a lot of miles this weekend- about 25 miles since Thursday- and had riding buddies both Saturday and Sunday. Saturday we went out with our regular riding buddies and enjoyed lots of pretty foliage and apples at the end of our ride.
Horse Plant Vertebrate Tree Working animal

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Plant Leaf Botany Tree Working animal

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We also had some new friends camping here for the long weekend, and I rode with the group on Sunday. I'll be honest, some of the ride was done at speeds that were a little uncomfortably fast for the footing we were on, but my mare is a gem and she really took care of me, even when I was nervous.

Horse Plant Vertebrate Tree Working animal

Horse Plant Sky Cloud Tree

Horse Plant Tree Working animal Horse tack

Total 2021 miles: 421.7
 

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I haven't caught up on all the posts yet. I haven't been on a horse in ages. I have had both knees replaced. The second one seems to be having a harder time getting well than the first. I have been teleworking and that has kept me busy. I wish I were out there riding with all of you.
 

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I haven't been on a horse or the forum for a while.

A short update though, last Friday I had to put my namesake Oreo down. He got something called Pythosis which I had never heard of before. It is more commonly known as swamp cancer. That didn't help either. It is caused by an organism that thrives in wet soil conditions and then gains entry through a break in the skin. I tried treating it with something the vet called a vaccine (as a science person, vaccines prevent illness not cure them). Unfortunately it didn't work.

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This Oreo and I in a local river.
 

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I've been giving Raven a break since she did the Virtual Tevis and the big ride to Lake Superior. Tucker has been neglected lately so I've been trying to get his miles caught up. I like to keep them fairly even lol. Friday we went to a new friend's home to ride the trails on her 120 acres and the 450 acres of her neighbor! That is a lot of acres! We did 7.5 miles that day.
Today I took Tucker to a new part of the National Forest and we did some exploring there. It was a really nice 10 mile ride. I would have ridden longer but I suspected that Dear Husband would be getting worried as I had not planned to be out that long.
We are have unbelievably beautiful weather for the middle of October. Here are a couple of the many many pictures I took. We are very orange!
 

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Between our fall vet visit, work, and rain, I only rode twice last week. Friday I really wanted to get out to the overlook to see the leaves one more time before it rained Saturday, figuring that the rain would probably knock a lot of the color down. The view did not disappoint!
Horse Plant Sky Cloud Ecoregion

We circled back by the beaver pond, but because there are so many pines there there wasn't actually a lot of color, except the grass still being surprisingly green!
Horse Plant Sky Cloud Tree

Saturday was foggy and way too warm for mid-October, and it rained off and on a lot of the day, with a final downpour overnight. That cleared out all the gross, sticky air, and left us with a perfect Sunday morning for a fall ride. I met up with my riding buddy, and we did 13.5 miles on trails we haven't ridden before. Some spots were pretty muddy from the rain the day before, and a lot of the leaves had come down making for some slippery footing in spots. But for the most part, we had an excellent ride.
Plant Working animal Tree Leaf Wood
Plant Horse Vertebrate Tree Working animal

Plant Horse Sky Nature Leaf

@weeedlady, we also went out in maximum orange gear! It's bow season, but we distinctly heard a muzzleloader going off somewhere in the distance as we rode through a woodsy section. I double checked the hunting calendar when I got home and there shouldn't have been any shooting as far as I could tell (although it is still bear season with guns and dogs-would someone use a muzzleloader for bears?), so I'm not really sure what to make of that. I ordered some new bells for my saddle, which I know is somewhat controversial with hunters but I'd rather err on the side of caution if I run into someone I'm not expecting to be out there.
Horse Plant Leaf Tree People in nature

Total 2021 miles: 437.2
 
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