Thursday, April 29, 2010 – A Lovely Ride at Village Creek State Park

What a lovely ride we had today! The footing on the trails was a soft soil they call “loess” in the brochure, though it was gravely on the connector trail from the campground to the trailhead, but there was enough of a shoulder on the road to avoid most of it. The trails were well marked other than at the very first intersection, and it was pretty obvious which way to go from the trail map. Every other intersection was well marked, with a You Are Here plaque and a number on the post. We took a loop that came out to be about about 7 moderate miles in all. Some of it was on trails so ancient the tree roots were above our head! (see pic-this is from horseback!) The horses were excellent, happy to go for a ride, but not at all overly exuberant, just right. There were a few places where we trotted, and one long stretch where we had a lovely cantor/gallop. At the end of that, however, just before we were to make our turn to come home, Hubby noticed my saddlebag was unzipped, and an inspection revealed I had lost a plastic bag of tissues. I felt guilty for littering, but we didn’t really think is was necessary to go back. Once I realized we were ahead of schedule, I changed my mind and decided to go back, as it couldn’t be very far back. A few minutes later, Hubby realized that he, too, had lost something, his water bottle that hangs from his horn, so we were both glad we had that decision. We found my plastic bag almost at once, then had to go a bit further to find the bottle. Once we did, we headed home. There was only one obstacle that we problematic, a creek crossing that was badly bogged, so much so that my horse, while he went over it the first three times, refused on the fourth, and I had to get down and persuade him across. I don’t blame him, he sank way up his fetlocks, and he was fine after that. When we got back, we gave the horses a bath at the wash rack next to the stables, and sprayed them with fly spray, as it was the first time they had been bothered by flies on the trail. Settled down for the evening, well-satisfied at our day’s adventure!

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