May cover of Endurance News Magazine
I was pleased to receive a large envelope in the mail today containing a copy of the May edition of Endurance News, the house publication of American Endurance Ride Conference (AERC). It had a post-it note from the editor of the publication because one of my Endurance ride photos was on the front cover.
Challenging Endurance ride
Canter Over the Mountain was the name of the endurance ride. Here in the woods at this water crossing the temperature was reasonable, but at the vet check and other places throughout the ride temperatures were in the nineties and humidity close to 100%. It is already a challenging ride because of the steep inclines and varied trail, but this particular year there were many pulls from the ride.
If you don’t know much about Endurance riding, throughout each event horse and rider are required to stop for a vet check. The horses are checked for recovery time, lameness, dehydration and other things to make sure that the horse is approved to continue. If the vet deems that there is a reason that the horse should not continue it’s called a pull (your horse is pulled out and cannot continue the event). This why it is really about knowing and training your horse and so many endurance folks love the challenge of the event and knowing their horse and what it can do.
I said that the horse AND RIDER have to go through a vet check. Well, on this ride it was important to make sure the riders were hydrated and able to continue. Many horse and rider teams pulled themselves out of the ride even though the vet would allow them to continue. It was that tough a ride.
Learn more about this horse and rider sport
Here is where you can learn more about Endurance riding: AERC
Another thing I like to do along with the action shots from the ride that I provide for the participants in these events is to take portraits of the riders with their horses before or after the event. This time around though, it was too dang hot and everyone was red-faced and covered in sweat.
You can see in these images how riders use sponges to cool their horses when they had opportunity.