Endurance Riding

Jul 15 2015

My First LD

Published by under Endurance Riding

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The following is a guest blog post written by one of my students:

July 11, 2015, the day of my first LD.  I was up before the alarm had even gone off and ready to go as soon as my feet hit the ground.  I could barely contain my excitement and I could feel myself shaking as I put the tack on my horse.  I mounted Dippi, my companion for the weekend, and followed Jaya towards the starting line.  8:05 we began, and the next 5 hours would be one of the most amazing things I have experienced.

Before I met Jaya, my amazing riding instructor, I began riding in February of 2014.  I rode a horse name Memphis for about 2 months.  In April, we went and bought another horse, My Fair Lady, who would later become one of my best friends.  I was introduced to Gymkhana that same month.  I enjoyed it very much, but soon discovered that it wasn’t for Lady.  Before I met Jaya, I had no clue what endurance riding was, so I never saw it as an option for my energetic Arab.  I continued to ride in Gymkhana, but I still felt like this wasn’t quite for Lady.  Then during the school year I started taking lessons and I learned about a whole other world of riding.  I went on my first all day trail ride January 1, 2015, it was amazing.  I have always loved being on the trail and being on it for 7 hours felt great.  I expressed my interest in endurance to Jaya, but I had no clue that I would be doing a ride so soon.

I moved Lady to Jaya’s house in May of 2015, and she is so happy.  Lady didn’t have enough weight on her, so she wasn’t able to compete in this ride.  I hope to ride her in the KC Memorial ride in September.   For this ride, Jaya let me ride her green-broke arab, Dippi.  I felt so honored to be riding Dippi, it meant a lot that Jaya trusted me with her horse and was confident in my ability to handle her.

I have to be honest, in the beginning of the ride, I became a little frustrated.  Dippi was a lot more forward than I was used to and I was getting blisters on my fingers.  We stopped and put some medicine on my fingers that helped a bit and switched reigns.  Jaya reminded me that I needed to trust her and let her do her job.  After that I was able to enjoy the ride that much more.  Dippi may be green, but shes honest and she took great care of me. On the trail Jaya’s horse, Asali, threw two boots, which we were able to recover.  And Aurora’s horse, Ember, threw a boot, which the gaiter had ripped off of.  (we recovered that later on)  Then we stopped a few times to tighten the girths on our saddles, Jaya was a master of mounting and dismounting by the end!  On our ride to the vet check we went through beautiful terrain, it was nice and cool and you couldn’t stop looking around you!  At one point manzanita bushes were all around us, I’m pretty sure they were out to get us!  We got into the vet check at 11:14, we stopped and let the horses eat and drink and did so ourselves.  We all vetted through, even with Dippi not wanting to trot after eating her mash! 🙂  And then we were off again at 11:50.

There was this one hill on the way to and on the way out of the vet check that was crazy!  The first time was the craziest since we were going so fast!  The time back to the finish line seemed to fly by.  When we came around the corner to the finish line, Jaya and I wooped and held our arms up.  1:09 pm, I had just finished my first LD.  When we crossed we were greeted with cheers from the people standing there.  The supportive and positive atmosphere blew me away, it made me feel even more incredible about what I had just experienced.

I could try all I wanted to describe the feeling of the whole experience, but it’s something you have to do yourself and I strongly encourage doing.  I am definitely hooked and will be doing many more rides in the future.  I hope to do Tevis one of these days, but I’ll take it one step at a time. 🙂

— By Nyah Herndon, age 16

Gold Country

One response so far

One Response to “My First LD”

  1. Allie h. (1 of jayas students)on 01 Feb 2016 at 7:56 pm

    That sounds amazing i hope for tha tone day on my horse Angel

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