So. I finally tracked down the drag ride coordinator for the upcoming AERC championships at Old Dominion. (It was on a need to know basis as I am starting a new job and work schedule within the next couple weeks). I spoke to Z over the phone and she said they had a spot for me drag riding the 2nd loop on Thursday with R.

“Are you talking about R (insert last name here)?” I asked.
“Yes,” she replied and hesitated. “Do you know her?”
“I am friends with her on Facebook,” I told her, “She knows my horse!”
“Then you’re ok riding with her?”
“Yes, of course.”
“Oh good,” Z sounded relieved. “It’s hard to pair riders up…they often change their plans at the last minute and some people don’t like each other.”
“I’m easy to get along with,” I assured her. “I’m sure it’ll be no problem.”

In the back of my mind I wondered why this other unnamed rider might have a problem with R. I’m easygoing so I don’t foresee a problem but 15 miles is a long time to share the trail with a difficult personality. NOT that R is – by all accounts we already have something in common being that we both ride non-Arabs. So I’m not going to worry about it.

My truck is supposed to be repaired this coming week (originally was supposed to be this weekend, but had to postpone due to rain). I’m trying hard not to get my hopes up too much, or get too excited, but it’s hard. I know a LOT of people who are going to be at the NC….including Justice’s old owner (M) and several fellow bloggers. I am a decided introvert and can be shy/quiet in new/unfamiliar social situations – something that’s often mistaken for unfriendliness. So I have made a mental note to try to be more outgoing, and not such a stranger. And although M and I aren’t necessarily friends (anymore?) I am going to make an effort to speak to her if I see her. Even though J and I aren’t competing, I’m sure she would like to see her old mount again.

Meanwhile we have steadily been logging miles (53.1 for the month of September). This past weekend I logged my last rides before NC. Unfortunately we were treated to low temperatures and rain.

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Justice says, "You've GOT to be kidding me..."

I rode him with a breast collar for the first time. I could only find one (that I owned) that halfway fit. It is a western type silver plated breast collar. I had to roll my eyes when I saw the final look. We look like we got lost in the way to the rodeo. Oh, did I mention my bridle is a western barrel bridle? I’m not trying to look like a hick, I swear! Somehow I did a complete 180 and I went from biothane bridles and English saddles to, well, what we’re using now. I’m sure we’re going to stand out like a sore thumb but I’m honestly just using what works for him and fits him best. So I guess that’s it for now.
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J was just not feeling the roads. And to be honest I wasn’t either. He kept stopping, trying to turn around or attempting to veer off on every side trail we passed.

I finally gave in and allowed him to take a side trail by the bridge, under the guise of getting down to the creek so he could drink. We did find a nice water crossing, but he did not drink and we got caught on someone’s trail camera. *face, palm*

Our ride started out with temps in the low 60’s and wind and rain but on the way back it let up a little bit.
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We did not ride down this trail. Just took a picture. The “mountain” in the distance is known as Stoney Mountain to locals. Don’t bother googling it – I did and absolutely nothing comes up. It’s actually two big hills, which are still undeveloped due to their rocky nature.

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We did stop to check out an abandoned house (because I’m nosy mostly) but both doors were padlocked 5 ways to Sunday.

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However they did leave a toilet out for passersby needing to answer nature’s call 😉

(Notice Justice watching me intently in the background. He was afraid I was going to leave him lol)

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There was a cool horse painted on the barn.

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View from the house.

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Another random shot from our ride.
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The pasture where J is boarded.

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Enjoying his post ride mash 🙂

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We rode pretty slow that day. I didn’t bother to boot him and he didn’t seem overly enthusiastic (neither was I).

The next day we headed out again.
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Booted up and ready to go!

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Although it wasn’t raining really, it was misting….this is looking toward Stoney Mountain.

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We rode past this house. It is one of my favorite landmarks.

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View behind the house.

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We got to ride the edge of this beautiful field.

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And this scary curve.

It was at this point that J and I decided to take a detour.

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Stoney Mountain was logged a few years back and there are still trails that cross cross over it. I had my music blasting the whole time, hoping it would alert any hunters of our presence. As before, we didn’t venture far…just enough to get a feel for the trail before turning back around.

I did take a video of us going back down. Because I was bored. This is the only time my music wasn’t playing. Cuz my phone can’t do two things at once lol.

You can’t tell from the video but under the grass the ground was strewn with rocks.

We hit the road again and pushed a little further before turning around.

Another video. Just because. I didn’t realize I was strange until I started watching other people’s riding videos. I talk to my horse all the time. For real. I hold long conversations with him at times. Yup, I’m cuckoo.

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Headed home….old house from the other side.

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Stats from that ride. Still slow, but whatevs.

I offered him a beet pulp mash as I do at the end of every ride. I mixed one scoop of electrolytes in, but he completely turned up his nose at it. I added more molasses but he still refused to eat it. I was slightly concerned but decided not to worry too much. He did take the beet pulp with salt the day before. It may be I need administer all electrolytes through a syringe and just stick to salt in his feed.

At any rate we leave for OD this coming Wednesday. It’s a 4 hr drive….the longest I’ve made with a horse trailer alone. Wish us luck!

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