On March 1st, 2010, my friend Walter and I set off on an adventure with my Arabian horse, Sojourner. I rode Soj across America and Walter drove our little truck (with no trailer). The trip began in Los Angeles, California and successfully ended in Bath, New Hampshire 8 months and 14 days later. It was a 3,700 mile ride.

We rode in celebration of family and as an outreach to those dealing with divorce-related depression.

This ride tells a tale of love in many forms - through the people we meet along the way, our connection with the horse, with the land, and with each other.

As this blog goes on it gets more and more in depth with tons of photos and experiences. Snuggle in with a cup of tea and read this like a book. I have switched the blog around so it reads start to finish so you don't have to read backward (except the first entry).

Here is our story...

California Route

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So-here is the Ca route. I have the first night covered and I'm still looking for a place in Pasadena. I have a place to stay in Banning and White Water before I hit the desert and I'm going to take an extra day to go into Joshua Tree a bit and maybe stay at Ryan's campground. They allow horses. I am a little concerned about the very beginning of the ride. We are going right through the city on route 66, but I've been told it's not so bad. It's just hard to find a place for the night.

Yesterday I put all of Soj's tack on to see how it all fits. I made his bridle and halter, saddle bags, booties, and breast plate. All of those things fit nicely now (after a lot of going back and forth between him and my leather shop), but his easy boots are another issue....and his saddle. I bought a dressage saddle because it is treeless and is so incredibly light, but it slips! I have a sheepskin, super soft pad under the saddle. Maybe that is the problem. I don't ride with a very tight girth and I hate to tighten it so much just to get on him. He turns his sweet little head all the way around and looks at what I'm doing as I tighten it as if to ask why I would do such a thing to him. To tell you the truth, it doesn't even matter-the saddle slips towards me no matter how tight I make the cinch. Once I am up it's okay because my body keeps it balanced, but it's not good enough. I don't really know what to do. I kind of wish I was just taking a Mexican saddle. I'll just trouble shoot and put a different blanket underneath. I think that will probably fix it.
As for the boots, I measured his hooves and ordered what I thought would be the right East boots, but one fell off yesterday. There is a way to make them just a little bit tighter so I'll go try that and see if it helps, but they're still not as hard to get on and off as the pamphlet says they should be. AND! I bought a harmonica holder because I am going to learn harmonica as I ride and it doesn't fit the darn harmonica!! Geez Louise. So now I have to go buy a smaller harmonica, I guess...

1 comment:

  1. Hi Linny,
    You definitely need those Easyboots to fit well. And I know it's not always that easy. What I would do is call Easycare in Tucson. They have an 800# on their site http://www.easycareinc.com/

    The resident expert there is Karen Chaton. She has thousands of miles riding endurance with Easyboots. I'd tell them that you are preparing to ride all the way across the country, are having some difficulty getting Sojourner's boots to fit properly, and ask to speak to Karen.

    Regarding the saddle, you need to get it to stop sliding around as well, as you know. You could ask Karen for advice on that as well. I wouldn't hesitate to tighten the cinch down a bit more to see if that helps. I used to think that I should go light on the cinch and then I read that this can actually be less kind to the horse because the saddle moving can cause chafing.

    For the harmonica, I think you can figure that one out on your own - no problem. :)

    Good luck. I'll be interested to see how it goes.

    JackieB (Tom)