Trail Report: Vepco Rd/240E Kritchie Mountain 3/13/2020

March 15, 2020

My tracker did not work properly back here and kept cutting off. There is no cell service here so I assume that is why. I tried to draw in a very rough yellow line adding where I rode to the trackers line.

Friday I was out of work in time to fit in a quick ride so I headed down Little Dry River Rd until it turned to gravel, then I made a left onto FR240 Vepco Rd. They have been cleaning up this road which was already in rather good condition. I took note that the FR branch on the left looked well cleared and I want to ride that next time. I don’t think it is terribly long so might be best for a day with limited time. Last time I rode it I believe it was so overgrown I turned around and drove to a different spot.

I drove up to the first right hand fire road, 240E Kitchie Mountain. This turn off has a loop but it’s always full of dumped trash and is awkward so I simply pull past the entrance and then back in and park on the side rather than pull in and use the loop. There’s plenty of room for this even with a larger rig.

I rode out past the closed fire gate and along the fire road. It did not appear to be recently used although it must have been, which I’ll discuss further into the ride.

Normally I bare left at the split. I did go straight several years ago, there was a tree down that was easy to navigate but the trail became over grown (these are old fire roads). Today I decided to check it out and found the downed tree moved and the path much improved. It did not appear to be cleared for vehicles but it appeared to be cleared for hiking. It would make a nice hiking trail. It’s not too steep at any point and the trees and such vary in type.

Do be aware that this area does have thorn trees. These are the ones that look like normal trees, so perhaps you reach out to push a branch and find yourself stabbed by large thorns.

The trail continues and I found a few downed trees that were no issue for on foot traffic. I dismounted at the second one and Simon sort of jumped it. A larger horse that is trail smart would probably be fine. But it was maxing out Simon’s height capability. The drop off to the side was pretty intense and the ground was soft and crumbly so a little sketchy. But I still felt comfortable progressing.

The trail wrapped around for a while and there was a few evident old turn offs that did not appear to be cleared. Eventually the trail just sort of disappeared so I turned around. I estimate it was a little over a mile in from the split and a mile back. It was also walking pace because of the narrowness of the trail. Watch your knees.

I returned to the split and took the normal left hand path (now to my right). This fire road is pretty open and clear and wraps down and around. Eventually I came to a cut in the ground. It appears the covert is being changed out. It was dug out and a piece of a new one is in there along with a piece of the old one. Just on the other side is a righthand turn up the mountain that I had once taken. I was hoping my tracker would show this meeting up with the branch I took earlier. But my tracker did not show anything.

I turned around and headed back letting Simon trot up the few miles of mountain and returned to the truck.

Mountes Games: Intro at 3 Socks Farm

March 8, 2020

Saturday we had a fun intro to games day at Anne Morrison’s lovely 3 Socks Farm in Mt Jackson, VA.

There were six riders new to games and I rode Simon. Anne’s indoor is awesome and long enough to set up 3 proper lanes at a time and has excellent footing!

Everyone did excellent and I was very impressed with all the ponies (including the horse sized ponies).

Thank you for donating some photos Melissa.

Trail Report: Massanutten Visitor Center – Wildflower Trail

March 6, 2020

Last Friday I managed to get out for a nice little ride through the woods.

I parked at the Massanutten Visitor Center and headed down the Wildflower trail to the closed picnic area, then followed Orange to Pink blaze and enjoyed a leisurely ride.

Last time I rode this way I had to turn back at some heavy downed trees completely blocking the way. That was probably a year ago and they were clear and there were no obstructions.

I got out to Turner Run in early February but did not record it here. It was a nice ride and I took the left hand old fire road back. It did require me to go off trail and slide down and climb up a rather steep bank to get around a down tree. Which I believe was there the last time I took this path. But was otherwise decent.

Last winter games practice 2020

February 24, 2020

Today was the last winter practice for this year and we had a perfect size turn out at five.

We forgot to get a group picture but we did try to snap one of all of the ponies chillin around the ring while we did an equipment reset.

Warm Winter Weather

December 27, 2019

We have been enjoying unseasonably warm weather for the past week. I’ve also managed to get in to and out of work early, with two holiday days off, there fore I have managed a hand full of farm hacks and generally enjoying my ponies in the daylight.

I snapped off these two quick photos of Simon the other day. He makes me smile.

I also caught this quick video of him getting a little roll in just before I got the photos.

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