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Discipline: LD/Endurance, CMO, Trail Rider, Cartoonist, Writer, Co-Director/ Green Bean Endurance
Email: jackereynolds@yahoo.com


October 16, 2008

AERC Nationals.......photos of the halfway point front runners








Valerie Kanavy in the lead....Stagg Newman running about fourth place...at the halfway. Just before I left someone said that one of the expected front runners had got lost on trail. Someone said Darolyn Butler, but not sure if that was true, as I did not see it myself, nor had she come into the halfway when I was present. Guess we will find out when folks talk about it on Ride Camp?

The AERC Nationals for 2008 are being held this weekend at the farm of Bill Wilson, hosted by the Daniel Boone Distance Riders at the Clark State Forest, Henryville, Indiana. I was present today for the first half of the hundred mile and got to see the P&R at the first stop, and was present for the vet check at the halfway point of about 56 miles. As I caught my first glimpse of the hills this morning the forest was a wash of subdued color, and the cold morning mist was rising off the trees as I wound my way down State Road 160 towards ride camp. A short drive down 160, a left on Pixley Knob Road, and then a right on Flatwood, climbing up, up, and up the winding hill to Bill Wilson's place. Would I find it, this field of dreams? As I came up on the hill it was no doubt I was in the right place, as a large field was packed with horse trailers, horses, and all the excitement of a National Endurance Ride. I grabbed my jacket, and was out of the car, taking it all in...my heart doing this funny flip flop thing in my chest, and suddenly having to blink back some happy tears as I saw the riders already coming in for the first check. I believe the front runner had covered the first nineteen miles in about 1:15, at least that is what was being said as I walked through the crowd. AMAZING, and the horses looked like it was so effortless, though we all know the work that goes into such riding as this. After the horses had moved through the check, I went on to the vendors row, and nearly lost my mind looking at all the needful things for endurance riders. Beautiful well made tack in color after color....and especially exciting to me were the S-Hacks made from this light weight aero space material. There were polar fleece rump rugs in wild, crazy patterns, even embroidered ones. Hoof boots, heart monitors, fleece saddle covers, saddles, pads, you name it, they had it. Later in the morning I ran into David Monroe who graciously kept me company, and a young woman who was thinking about trying endurance riding on her arabian mare. We all traded phone numbers for some future training rides. I also ran into Donna, who was on the trail clean up crew with me, and she said she'd like to come down and ride the trails at Versailles with me sometime. I want to make mention too that there were several of the hundred mile riders who opted for easyboots on their horses. It was an exciting day, and I'd imagine in an hour or so the winners will be running in.....~Endurance Granny

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