Hawk and Kerry endure… again
Five days and 250 miles exploring the mountains of eastern Nevada. Trails climbing out of the sagebrush into grassy meadows and then above the treeline at 10,000 feet. Hills alive with wildflowers and remains of silver-seeker’s cabins and the Ft. Schellbourne pony express station. Not everybody’s idea of fun with their horse, but then, not everybody was cut out to be an endurance rider.
Kerry Greear of Whitewood, SD and her horse, Hawk, recently finished the Ft. Schellbourne XP ride with the second fastest time over the five days and 250 miles on the same horse. That is 33 hours of trotting, cantering and climbing up and down hills in the rain, hail and some days of sunshine. Seventy-eight riders started the ride on day one before dwindling to 46 riders on day five. Some horses were lame, some were tired, but sometimes it was the riders who just could not handle another 50 miles in the saddle.
“I planned to ride all five days and finish with Hawk in good shape,” said Greear. “I did not plan to place so highly. We were in the top 10 finishers three of the five days. The tougher the trail, the better my horse does. He is a morab, and they are tough as well as fast. I rode slowly enough to enjoy the trail and let Hawk grab bites of grass along the way. When we got on the Pony Express Trail I just had to whoop and gallop and pretend I was carrying the mail! My sister, Colleen, traveled to Nevada with me and helped take care of me and Hawk.”
On the way home, Greear started thinking about the 2,400 miles of endurance rides Hawk and her have done together. They loved the multi-day (3 day/155 miles and 5 day/250 miles) and 100 milers the best. Every ride they have done has been fun, but she also enjoys trailriding in the Black Hills with her family and friends and hopes to do more of that this summer. Greear has three horses to ride besides Hawk, and she needs to start his little sister, Annie. Greear hopes Annie loves to travel and trot the trails like her big brother.
On July 25 and 26, Greear will be hosting the Ft. Meade Remount Endurance Ride on the Ft. Meade Recreation Area for the third year. Last year, over 90 riders participated. Greear believes it will be even bigger this year as she already has entries from eight states. There will be 25 and 50 mile events each day and have added a Fun Ride on Sunday, which is 15 miles.
“I hope local riders will compete in the Fun Ride, volunteer at the event or enter the 25 mile ride,” says Greear. “Our local riders have finished very well the past two years in both 25 and 50 mile competitions on a variety of horse breeds.”
For information, contact Kerry Greear at 605-347-5817 or Rick Soelzer at 605-390-4646 or visit the website at: http://www.ftmeaderemount.com.
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The road has been long, but saddle bronc rider Wade Sundell hasn’t lost his passion for rodeoing.