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...

Update from Walter..


Hey everyone! I've come to know some of you only from your comments, and the only things you know about me really are that I like making fun of Sojourner in a made up voice, and that I dislike beans. Hopefully I'll post every once in awhile so that you can get my perspective on things.

Anyway, two nights ago we camped right on the side of the highway, in a small depression near a large and out-of-place tree. This part of New Mexico is very desolate, and we didn't expect such a nice spot to camp. Luckily we were out of the wind, and out of sight from passers-by on the highway. The air was pretty warm and sticky throughout most of the night, so we had a good amount of dew on the tent and on our sleeping bags when we woke up the next morning.

Sojourner was content, hungry, and pretty dirty from lying down. He did his usual whinnying, knowing it was rice bran time, after Linny got up and out of the tent. We let him off of his high line (which was tied to a highway guard rail post) to graze and stretch his legs a bit.

Linny and I have been doing a light workout routine in the mornings recently, mostly good stretches and some sit ups. Combined with running, walking, riding, and the occasional rock workouts, we're getting into better shape. I mean, we were both pretty solid before we started, but now we're like, rock solid. We're also diving into a Spanish for beginners (it says Spanish for Dummies, but we're not Dummies) book, so that we can learn a language that a lot of people speak in this part of the country. I have a background in Spanish from high school, but it feels like it's been 20 years since I've tried speaking it. Jeez I guess 20 years isn't that far off. We're starting with basics, like how to say "here is an egg" and "the horse's name is Sojourner." Probably won't use those two sayings together, but it's a start.

There aren't a lot of options for water here, so it takes a bit of searching and resourcefulness in order to refill our water jugs. After breaking camp and heading up the highway a little, I saw a small well on the side of the road and I pulled over to check it out. It had water in it, but it would have taken Stretch Armstrong arms to reach down and fill up the jug. I saw a dirty hose near the well, so I grabbed it, thinking that I could siphon some water out of the well. Siphoning doesn't work too well if the water level is at the level you're trying to siphon to. Putting one's mouth on a dirty hose is also a little gross. Mission failure. At least there are some ranches coming up that I can stop at. Someone has to have water around here! Isn't it supposed to be the source of life? What the heck!

Anyway, just wanted to check in and let everyone know that this 60-mile stretch of nothing is quite relaxing and beautiful, even if there isn't any water. I'm putting up a few pictures of our camping situation from that night, and a couple of pictures from the previous few days as well when we explored local ruins and abandoned buildings. Enjoy!

Quarai Ruins, Salinas National Monument near Mountainair, NM

Old high school gynmasium where the kids ditched their books apparently.

One of the abandoned buildings at the old Lucy Ranch on Highway 60.

Linny and Soj walking through the tunnel to the spot we camped at by the highway.

Setting up the high-line... one end tied to the truck, the other end to the guard rail post.


  1. Ha ha!!! ROCK solid!! Now, now....The rocks are still giving us a run for our money. ;)

    Now we are in Fort Sumner, NM, with a wonderful family. They have opened their home to us, fed us, and offered their place for as long as we need...I can already feel how much we will miss them when we leave. There are so many good friends to be had...it's a beautiful thing...I'll post soon!

  2. Loved your post Walter. You're part in this trip is so crucial, I'm glad we're getting to hear a little from your perspective. Your photography is amazingly unique- I can't praise your work enough. Keep those pictures coming!

    You all make quite an amazing team. Glad to hear the 60 mile stretch of desert is going well.

  3. Great to hear from you, Walter. I'm looking forward to sitting by a campfire and visiting with you sometime.

    You're making an incredibly valuable contribution to the journey. You're so resourceful with coming up with whatever the three of you need.

    Rock on! Team sorting tomorrow night. Buster and I will be thinking of the three of you.

  4. Reading a bit about Ft. Sumner. Billy the Kid is buried there, which is interesting. However, I also discovered a very sad chapter in the history of Fr. Sumner. It was an internment camp for Apache and Navajo Indians. http://www.legendsofamerica.com/NM-FortSumner.html

    The plan was to "convert" the Indians into farmers using the Pecos river for irrigation. It didn't work. Can you imagine saying "Linny, you'll live in downtown Newark now. We've got a lifetime job for you working in the basement of an office building putting manila folders in filing cabinets. You'll be happy."?

    I once read a quote from an Indian presented with a life as a future farmer that made sense. He said something like "We aren't farmers. You might as well try to get a river to run backwards"

    Perhaps, on your way out of town, you can drop a little sage off the side of Soj as a way to say we're sorry. If only we could have been a bit more enlightened then. I'd like to think I would have been personally, but historians and other experts would say that almost all of us would have agreed with the forced extermination of the Native Americans' way of life.

    They lived as they always had for hundreds of generations and we eliminated all of it in about 100 years. Of course, the Native Americans went to war with one another plenty, too. And took slaves and all that. I'm not so romantic as to think otherwise. But that still doesn't make their plight in the 19th Century any less tragic.

    I hope you don't consider this post to be too much of a downer, Linny. History is what it is. But perhaps we can use our knowledge of it to be more charitable toward others in our own lifetimes. I guess that's all we can do.