By Patty Wilber
The second training ride of the Back Country Horsemen, Pecos Chapter’s year was Sunday Feb. 26th, at the Galisteo Basin Preserve.
It was spitting snow at our house.
Forty degrees F and wind, was the forecast.
Galisteo Basin is boring.
But, Jim hadn’t ridden in a few weeks, the weather didn’t call for precipitation there, and my president (of BCH) said I should not be a whuss and should show up. (I do ride in all sorts of weather, but sometimes, just sometimes, I might like to stay inside with a book and a cup of tea. Just sayin’.)
President Mary Ann and Tulip.
The deciding factor was Jim, so we loaded up Cometa and LT and off we went.
It was a little on the chilly side, but it turns out it wasn’t boring! I’d even go back!
There are new and much longer trails compared to last time I was there (2014), and the footing on the three hour (including lunch) ride we did was really nice! The trails were well marked and there is a clearly drawn map.
There are tri-use trails (equine, bike, and hikers) as well as bike-hike only trails. I tried to paste the map into the post instead of linking it, but alas, the link was the best I could do. So, I linked it twice!
Heading out from the Cowboy Shack parking area, going south.
The NM sky and Jim on Cometa.
There were a few bike riders (who were really nice to the equines), but had the weather been warm, I think there would have been many more cyclists. The trail rules are horses get priority over bikes and hikers, and bikes get priority over hikers. This all makes sense from a safety point of view, but those pesky quiet bikes can sneak up on an unsuspecting equine with variable and sometimes dramatic results. No drama this day, though!
There were also loose dogs, only one of which was NOT under control and would have come with us had we not stopped to let his family retrieve him.
Back Country Horsemen is always fun to ride with. (We are looking for more members and have an informational meeting April 8. See the flyer at the end of this post.)
I rode behind Linda most of the way and that is always a lot of conversational fun!
Plus, I got this picture of her and Star.
And this one of the Kingsbury clan!
The Pecos Chapter of the BCH works like dogs in the Manzanos and Pecos Wildernesses doing trail maintenance and pack support. What better way to volunteer for a worthy cause–on a horse in the back country? Ok, we do get off and on a lot to do the work! But it is very satisfying!
In other news: Indy got her stitches out on Wednesday and is out of solitary and back in the big pen with LT. I will start riding her next week. I might consent to a medium trace clip to hide (in plain site) the bald spot on her flank. That might make a blog. Read about different clips here.