Sunday, Feb. 23, 2020 – Day Three of the OTL

Hi Babe,
Once again, we got an early start today, though Jeff dragged his feet a little this morning and we were about 15 minutes later than I wanted, but you know me, I built a little extra time into it anyway. We headed straight for the Cypress Creek parking lot, which was going to be the starting point for Jeff and the two ladies we met last night, and for me, though I was headed in the other direction so that I could once again get out before the riders. A few had already left, but they had to stop at Riverbend to check in and listen to the riders meeting, so I jumped out in front of them, taking down some orange markers and checking on the pink. The weather was absolutely perfect today, partly cloudy, low 70’s, a little breeze, just fabulous! Most of the markers were in pretty good shape, except one entire section from Cypress Creek to the cow pastures, where every darn marker had disappeared, and I didn’t really have enough to replace them all, so I had to make the markings a lot farther apart, which caused a problem for a couple of people, but they managed to get on track again. That’s the problem with marking so much earlier, some stuff goes missing! If it were up to me, I’d just mark the trails a few hours ahead of the group, and have a drag team take them down again, it would be much more efficient, because an awful lot of time and energy is spent doing it beforehand, not to mention we probably lost 50 plus markers that I needed to replace over the three days. I thought I would catch up to Jeff et al earlier than I did, but they had a good head start, so it was only a couple of miles before the end when I finally did meet up with them. I got slowed down a couple of times because someone had come out after I marked the trails in JD earlier this week and added a few turn markers on the left side of the trail, even though the turn was to the right, so they were in the wrong place and were really confusing, so I had to pull them down. Later at the pavilion I met the woman who did it, she’s one of the original founders of the OTL, and I explained what I did, and she seemed to understand, she had just never heard of that before. Anyway, the four of us arrived at the pavilion, grabbed some beer and burritos and chatted for a long time. My truck and trailer arrived, but we soon had to unhook it and have another truck take it into an area that needed 4WD to rescue a horse that pulled a ligament or something. The next group that came in was a long time later, and the Sunday group was a lot smaller than I remember from last year, though the numbers were better on Friday and Saturday evidently. Anyway, we ended up getting drawn into a long conversation with the organizers, which was fairly enlightening, and finally packed up to leave. We had arranged to meet the ladies Jeff had ridden with at Uncle Micks for rib Sunday, and we all left about the same time. Service there was really slow again, and they were out of all but a half rack of ribs, which we let the ladies have since they’re from out of town and Jeff and I can go anytime. I didn’t really need any more food, but it was good company, and we were there for more than two hours before we finally left, getting home around 8:00. Got the horses settled in pretty quick, took my shower, and now I’m more than ready for bed! Good night, my love!

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