Endurance Riding

Mar 31 2012

Third Time is Not Always a Charm

Published by under Endurance Riding

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I am sitting here in front of my computer crying, and as I am, feeling very foolish for the tears.

Jakob and I loaded up the horses in the trailer this morning. It was pouring down rain, so we had to tarp all our camping gear in the bed of the truck. We headed out towards Reno, on our way to the Nevada Derby. We knew clear skies and sunshine awaited us for Jakob’s first 25 on Sunday.

We made it all the way to the Tahoe National Forest, but when we hit 3,000 feet I saw the rain hitting my windshield turn to slush and then, snow. I told Jakob to cross his fingers and hope that the snow didn’t stick to the ground. But as we continued on, the snow got so heavy I couldn’t see 10 feet in front of me. We weren’t carrying chains, but even if we had been, I would have been afraid to go on while hauling the horses. I made the decision to turn around. As I did, we got temporarily stuck and I jack-knifed the horse trailer (which is what I think may have caused a dent in the front of my trailer).  

We did make it down the mountain soon after, heading towards home. I put the truck in the lowest gear and descended at 20 miles an hour. When we hit Grass Valley, on the way to Marysville, Jake and I parked at a gas station and discussed what to do. He cried a lot, out of complete disappointment. I told him I could call my endurance friend, Linda, who didn’t live far away, to see if we could crash at her place for the night and then try to make it to the ride in the morning (by 8 am for our ride-out time). But, later, Linda talked some sense into me. We both decided it was better for me and Jake to get the horses home safely and de-stress ourselves, as there was no guarantee the weather would improve overnight (I later found out the roads through Tahoe had been closed).

On the 70 outside Marysville, when we weren’t far from home, 4 cars rear-ended each other in front of me. I was able to stop in time, but I had to slam on my breaks, leaving skid marks in the road, and jostling the horses. 

Jakob and I spent 5 hours hauling the horses today, only to end up right back where we started from. When we pulled in the driveway to our home, I breathed a sigh of relief that I had gotten my son and our beloved horses home safely.

We’ve been home a couple hours now and the disappointment has left Jakob. He is playing Wii with his younger brother and looking forward to going to the movies tonight. But for me, the disappointment has just sunk in. I know nice weather is right around the corner and there are a plethora of rides we can do together, starting next month. 

My disappointment comes from the fact that this is the third ride I have tried to take my son to. We had to withdraw from a 25 miler last summer when Beauty had an allergic reaction to a bee sting, leaving her eyelid swollen shut. She also felt “off” when I was riding her the day before the ride, which gave me confirmation to withdraw her (I had already been considering it when she had the allergic reaction the week before).

The second ride we withdrew from was in September. I had signed us up for another 25-miler, not realizing we would be closing escrow on our house the same exact weekend.   

This morning, as I pulled out of our driveway, I smiled, thinking, “third time’s a charm,” but we didn’t make it to this ride either. As soon as we got home today, I looked at my husband and said, “Is this some kind of omen? Is someone trying to tell me something? Is Jakob not supposed to do endurance?” Gary laughed and said, “I think the endurance world is just scared of Jakob. Cause once he actually gets there to the start of a ride, he is going to kick some serious ass.”

Cache Creek Ridge Ride – Here We Come! 

11 responses so far

11 Responses to “Third Time is Not Always a Charm”

  1. Teresa Straubon 31 Mar 2012 at 9:28 pm

    Ugh, I feel your pain. I plan my summer schedule months in advance, and for one reason or another, I start less than half the rides I plan for. I keep hoping to improve those odds, but life happens. Make sure to doubly enjoy the rides you do make it to. See you @ Cache Creek! (fingers crossed)

  2. Kadra Gillilandon 31 Mar 2012 at 10:26 pm

    Awwww I feel for you. Just canceled my entire first year. 🙁 He will get there!

  3. Karen Bumgarneron 01 Apr 2012 at 7:27 am

    Just glad u and horses are safe! That is what is really important. Rides can be replaced but not lives. 🙂

  4. Dianna Chapekon 01 Apr 2012 at 2:37 pm

    Sorry you didn’t make it over the pass but glad you’re home safe. That happened to me two years ago trying to get to the NV Derby. Quite a few years ago I was at a ride in NV when a blizzard hit. Better to be home safe & warm than in NV on a horse in the middle of a blizzard.

  5. JayaMaeon 01 Apr 2012 at 2:41 pm

    Thanks, gals. The more endurance riders I hear from, the more I realize everyone has a similar story… endurance riders can definitely relate, while my non-endurance friends are probably shaking their heads thinking the extremes we take to get to a ride are crazy! LOL. Jake and I will archive this as another one of those insane endurance stories we all love to share – and yes, we feel thankful to have made it home safely!
    Oh, yea, and note to self: check the road conditions BEFORE we leave, so I don’t waste 3/4 of a tank of gas.

  6. Sheri Braunon 01 Apr 2012 at 3:01 pm

    Now I can see your sad face… sorry girl, trust that you were meant to be right where you’re at today, enjoy the sunshine… if I know you ~ you are already saddled up and riding in that beautiful forest right outside your front door (how many people can do that?) xoxo

  7. Ann Byrnson 01 Apr 2012 at 4:50 pm

    Very glad I did NOT know what was going on during your ordeal. Now that I know you two got safely home with your precious cargo, it doesn’t matter to me one bit that you had to cancel–I’m just thankful you survived with no serious accident! Mom

  8. Ann Scowon 01 Apr 2012 at 7:38 pm

    There will be more rides. Wow, what a story!

  9. Katie E. Arrigonion 01 Apr 2012 at 8:40 pm

    SO glad you all made it home safely, you’re a wonderful Mama and make wise choices. Jakob, Declan, and Gary are blessed to have you. 🙂

  10. Linda Straub Boisaon 01 Apr 2012 at 11:43 pm

    After reading your blog………that whole day was terrible! Good thing you turned around! Glad you got home safe! I have never had a Grasshopper die under my tutelage!

  11. Mike Iorgaon 07 Apr 2012 at 8:07 pm

    Wow, sounds pretty grim.

    You’re a great writer Jaya, You brought me into your story and I could feel you and Jakob’s pain. That’s a wonderful gift. Keep writing.

    As for the trailer, heck yeah, we’ll get it fixed. No worries, in fact, I think I can get the bumper pulled out enough to be almost indistinguishable.

    Hang in there!

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