Submitted by Stacey Maloney Team Easyboot 2014 Member
The 2014 Rattlesnake Round Up was a few weeks ago now and was the last ride of our CTR season. I was disappointed the end of the season seemed to come so quickly as my new mare, "Marina", seemed to have just hit her stride and having only made it to four rides this year I wasn’t done yet either.
I hauled the two horses down to Writing on Stone Provincial. Park in southern Alberta on the Friday and set up camp with my friend Trisha who would be riding my gelding KC with us in the Novice division the following day.
Initial vet checks went great after which we saddled up to take the horses through the hoodoos and down the road to ensure all kinks were worked out for the morning. Marina cruised through the rock formations with confidence she gained from those in front of us and out we went down the road riding two abreast. So much fun in such beautiful countryside.
Morning always comes early and Trisha and I got our horses tacked and ready to ride. Both horses would be sporting their Easyboot Epics - my tried and trusted boot of choice for many years.
The first loop was the most technical of the two and I think harder than last year, but it was a beautiful sunny day and we trucked along with no issues for the most part, other than some green horse sillies. The trail wound along the top of the coulee with steep drop offs, sections of graveled trail, flat sand stone steps and many river crossings.
The second loop was mostly flat pastures and the trail ducked up and down the small coulees a bit. We had wasted some time throughout the day and spent more time walking than normal in the second loop as we had been told there would be an on trail vet check but lack of volunteers had made ride management have to rethink their number of vet checks.
The vet scores were a bit disappointing all around as the 12-mile loops only had water at the very beginning and very end. Even though our horses had a good drink each time we crossed the river, there wasn’t enough time for it to absorb and all horses lost points for hydration and I though for sure we would lose points for coming in late.
Not surprisingly, our Easyboot Epics performed flawlessly. Our horses traveled over the rough terrain comfortably without taking any missteps. We never experienced any twisting of the shells or rubbing of the gaiters. My horses are very confident in their footing when they're wearing their Easyboot Epics.
Our final vet outs went great with KC being normal KC and Marina being in higher spirits and better condition than her vet in – I couldn’t ask for more than that.
Awards were dolled out the following morning. The novice group was called out first and as names in my division were called out starting at 6th place by the time they got to 3rd I knew we were out based on our vet scores– and that was ok. We had personal accomplishments to be proud of but seems even though we had a crummy vet score we were still best of the bunch and we were called up to accept the first place ribbon! It was surprising and exciting and I was so proud of my little brown mare and her very first red ribbon.
Thanks to EasyCare for creating such a stellar product with so many options to help ensure all horses can experience the benefits of Easyboots. We couldn't get through our season without our Easyboots.