Labor Day weekend always makes me feel that summer is coming to a end. It also means the Green Mountain Horse Association three-day 100 (competitive trail ride). It always has beautiful vistas and lots of good friends. The ride is broken up into three days of 40/40/20. There was also a 60-mile ride and this year a 40-mile ride was offered.
I have been prepping my mare Grace all year towards this event, with much success from using Easyboot Gloves and Glue-Ons. I glued her boots on Thursday morning and heading to the GMHA to vet in. The ride had 50 horses starting the 100 which is a really great number for it. I am not sure how many entries were in the 60 and 40.
This year the first day of the ride was a warm one for September in Vermont with highs in the mid 90s and high humidity. The trail varied from dirt roads to pavement and woods trials. It has been very dry here, so natural water was scarce. At the end of the first day 11 horses had been pulled. Grace was going strong. She did have a little arm pit sore due to the calcium chloride they use on the road to keep the dust down. More than half of the horses were affected by it.
Day two was a bit cooler and we had a beautiful breeze it was a more technical day with mostly lovely woods trails. There is lots of grazing along the trail so the horses really like that. I changed saddles to put my girth in a different spot and at the end of the day Grace was a little tight in her back but was doing fine. Another nine horses (I believe) got pulled. And several had to re-present in the morning. In the morning three more horses did not go out for the last 20 miles.
The last 20 was cool and flew by over some grand trails and dirt roads. And we were finished by 10 AM. We ended with a little girth sore and a couple of interference marks. There were a lot of hills on the second day and I should be riding more with boots behind than I am. So I think she got a little tired just from not being used to them.
We got first in our weight division and she looked so good I was thrilled to pieces. I got home and she wanted to drag me to the field, and her legs were cool and tight and her back perfect. I think I was the only one in glue-ons and I don't think they really have much wear on them. Truly amazing and one of the best things I could have done for my horses.
Gene Limlaw, Weathersfield, Vermont