Monday, October 31, 2016

2016 Owyhee Hallowed Weenies: The Perfect Finale

October 31 2016

Everything was just perfect for the last Owyhee ride of the endurance season: the timing of the weather, the trails, the great Halloween costumes, the horses, the people, the music.

An intimate gathering of endurance friends showed up to ride: 22 in the 25-mile ride, and 14 in the 50.

It rained for a couple of hours Friday night - the exact perfect amount to leave the trails in perfect condition, not slick, not a bit of dust, and packed down just right. The rain stopped at the perfect time during the night so that horses were dry (although very dirty from rolling!) for saddling up. Temperatures during the day hung in the 60's - perfect for horses already haired up for the winter. The perfect fall scenery decorated the ride, with maroon quail bush and bright golden cottonwood trees along the creeks, the Owyhee mountains playing hide-and-seek with rain clouds, and tendrils of fog drifting up some of the drainages throughout the day.

Costumed Hallowed Weenie riders and horses scampered about the Owyhee desert: Wonder Woman on her Wonder Horse, a happy clown, a mother dalmatian and her spotted litter of puppies (the racing mule junior riders!), a black widow spider and its (horse) web, the Sheriff of Naughty-Ham chasing a couple of convicts, a carrot, a pirate, a Power Ranger.

All 22 starters finished the 25 mile ride, with Carrie Johnson and Belesema's Specialty just edging out Simone Mauhl and Boogey for the win in 2:57. Belesema's Specialty won Best Condition. Local crick rider Wonder Woman (Linda Kluge) and her Wonder Horse Ted finished 3rd. Trinity Jackson, the Dalmation Mom, brought a slew of Junior riders (6 of them!) who all finished on their mules. Beth Nicholes, no long a Junior, rode and finished on DWA Zifhaffir in his first ride. They completed with Beth's brother Terrence - substitute jockey for Helen Bonner - on DWA Emigree. Falisha Leon, yet another Junior, rode and finished on Sylvan Sovereign with her grandma Vicci Archer.

12 of 14 finished the 50 mile ride, with Dick Root and OFW Alivia, and Errol Fife and OMR Pristine smoking to the win in 5:48. This is after Dick and Ali started without a breast collar, and the saddle slipped way back going up the steep starting hill, and when Dick went to adjust the saddle, Ali went to bucking, bucked the saddle off, and Dick retrieved his horse and saddle, and ran back to camp on foot with Ali to grab a breast collar. He and Ali got back on trail and caught up with and passed our group before 9 miles was up. OFW Alivia won Best Condition. Sarah Holloway was the only Junior in the 50, riding her horse Noble Desperado with her aunt Connie Holloway on DWA Saruq. Finishing in 6th place on WMA Proclaim (Riley) was Karen Steenhof, who earned her 18,000th AERC endurance mile!

A new little endurance rider took to the trails this ride: 11-year-old Cameron Teeter, who trail rode the famous Jose Viola, with his dad Clay on Krusty, and grandpa John on Sunny.

Friday and Saturday evenings the perfectly delightful sounds of the Bluegrass group Pickett Crick Ramblers (is that our name??) could be heard pounding away into the night. As Tom Noll said, "We've improved a lot in the last 1 1/2 years!" We may not always play in time or in tune, but we have fun.

And that concluded the Owyhee endurance ride season: perfectly good friends, fun, and frivolity.

See you next season!

More photos and results can be seen at:

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