Shenandoah Trail Riders – May 19, 2019

May 19, 2019

Today I went on a lovely little ride with the Shenandoah Trail Riders at Uncle Tom’s Park.

I should start by saying I was LATE! If you know me somewhat well you know I am always super early, like way too early, and that I start to panic when I am just running on time. But I have been working on this because no one needs to be 40 minutes early for a doctors appointment.

Today this back fired and I pulled into the camp ground at about 7 minutes after ride out time and everyone was gone! Ahhh. Luckily I was already tacked up and just needed to tighten my cinch and put on my helmet. Simon is simple and an excellent trail pony so no worries there, and off we went with Daisy happily loping along.

We cantered up the road and onto the trail and when it wasn’t too rocky we moved out until we caught up with Ellie at the back of the group. She was on new dog duty, making sure the new dog learned the ropes. It took maybe ten minutes for me to catch up and we were still in the woods part of the trail.

Its a lovely ride with several water crossings, shade for the majority of the ride, and of course, excellent company. I chatted with a few people, making sure to enjoy that good company.

Most of the riders in this club are on gaited horses, and those that are not are still on taller, more athletically built horses, leaving Simon as one of the few stubby legged mounts. So I usually end up trotting, walking, trotting, walking a lot. Sometimes he will roll into this nice leisurely western jog that manages to keep up but today we were walk/trot.

Uncle Tom’s Park is a neat location I probably would not know about if not for the Shenandoah Trail Riders. My history on the location is subpar and I should probably ask someone for details but after some googling I found a neat article by STRHA member Susan on Equitrekking.com where she gives some details about the location, including that it opened in the 1930s and was popular until the 1970s.

I absolutely love the pool that still has its old ladders attached. Today it was nice and full of that cold mountain spring water and looked very inviting after our ride since it was one of the first hot days of the year. But just as the covered dish lunch was being set out, and with blue skies, the rain poured down. Refreshing.

It was another lovely ride with some super people.

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