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Feb. 20th 2009

I wish I could say there was something special about this date, sadly it is not so.

What is special is that the friend who does my website is coming to pick up all the information, so I must get it ready. This means writing a new newsletter, I know, long overdue, too busy doing things outside, and getting some photos in order so she can post them on the website.

Let us back up a little. For those of you who read the website from time to time will know that each year at the beginning of May, I turn the farm over to the ‘Hog Scramble’ endurance ride. It means a lot of preparation for all concerned, and each year I find something that could have been done better, so I am already making lists of things to implement this year in order for the event to go even more smoothly. The biggest fun for me, and my brother who visits for 3 months at a time, is to study the maps, walk the forest and help prepare the trails. We happily spend hours in the forest checking suitability with an eye to a little challenge and some technical difficulty. It is, after all, an endurance ride!!

The added bonus of that much time in the forest is all the flora and fauna we are able to observe. Flowers, flowering trees and birds are at the top of our list of things to look out for. Often, we have to call the forest service to cross-reference something we have seen but are unable to identify. They are a marvelous source of knowledge.

This year has seen many repeat customers, thank-you, you know who you are, and many new faces. For me it continues to be a great joy of inspiration and learning as I find out, and can mostly meet peoples needs. As far as I know there were no accidents this last year, other than my own, and mostly just silly things. 

For instance, riding along one day with a friend, we were pushing through some tangle of trees when I got caught in a vine. In leaning back to try and extricate myself I unwittingly asked my horse to move forward, which, of course he did, and I landed smartly on my bum, but had a death grip on my reins. Alas, he pulled away from me and I could no longer hold on. As I watched my horse disappear down the trail, my thoughts raced ahead to what my husband would think seeing a rider-less horse at the gate. So I called him, thank heavens for a cell phone that works in the forest, and said ‘open the gate, honey, horse coming home without me!’

Disaster was averted! My friend caught up with him and all was well.

Seahorse-Haven, along with other trailriding associations, primarily Sam Houston Forest Equestrian Association (SHFEA), are working with the forest service to implement 50-100 miles of permanent trails in this area. It is likely to be a 2- year project, as funding, suitability, environmental studies to name just a few, all have to be taken into consideration. For any one who enjoys riding in the forest it is a wonderful chance for everyone to be involved in some way.

Go to www.shfea.org to become a member and find postings about upcoming events and ride-outs. Some of these take place from the Seahorse-Haven.

For those of you who do not live in the immediate area, we have had very little rain. This is both good and bad. The bad is we need the rain to get spring on the way and the grass to grow. The good is the trails are riding wonderfully and we keep finding more and more.

Happy riding everyone and I will try and do better with my updates. 

Fiona

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Page Updated 02/2009

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