Wednesday, September 20, 2017
September 20 2017
by Merri Melde-Endurance.net
Rock, rocks and more rock! You couldn't see the trees for the rocks. - Kipling the horse, 7th with rider Ronda Eden
I think it [the first loop] was rockier than cr@p, but it was so dark, I couldn't see. - Matt Scribner, 10th on MM Cody
If you see enough rocks on the trail over all daylight hours then it is quite possible you will see rocks at night when there are no rocks! - Max Merlich, 11th on TCF Miles High
The rocks - you guys got that nailed! - Darlene Anderson, 12th on Xtreme Surprise
I love the trail. And the rocks - I don't care, I still love 'em. - Kaitlyn Cummins, 13th on VA Anastahzi
Nevada does have the record for most rocks in the US. We rode over most of them yesterday! - Janet Worts, 14th on MG Sedona
Thanks for letting me ride through your rock garden! - Troy Eckard, 15th on OT Rymoni GLY
You don't have to squint too hard, as you drive up the narrow canyon and incline from Dayton, Nevada, past Silver City and Gold Hill and on up into Virginia City at 6200 feet, to imagine how it was in the old days: loaded wagons pulled by horse and mule teams up the rough steep canyon roads, wild horses, unforgiving rocky mountains, a multitude of gold and silver mines, shafts and tailings, and rocky trails.
The first gold discovered in Nevada was in 1849 in Dayton, and with the discovery of the Comstock Lode strike in 1859 (the first major silver strike in America), Virginia City sprang up more or less overnight. Much of the old time panache is still alive, with people strolling boardwalks and visiting saloons lining a narrow main street, and much of the city is perched on the terraced multitudes of old mine tailings.
It's not too hard to imagine the horses and riders of yesteryear, gathering in a group in front of Virginia City's Delta Saloon (est. 1865), forming a posse or gearing up for a cattle drive, striking out early on the trails out of town. Those old trails in the rugged desert mountains are still there, and for 50 years, on an early morning in September, endurance riders have congregated in front of the Delta Saloon, and ridden 100 miles in this rocky, mountainous terrain for the bragging rights of earning a Virginia City 100 buckle upon finishing with their amazing equine equine partner within 24 hours.
The 100-mile Virginia City trail is itself one of the stars of the show - a demanding, unforgiving trail. It's always been rocky, but after last winter's heavy snowfall (after years of drought) and spring rains, much of the topsoil washed away to - you guessed it - expose more rocks. One rider said, "My mare remembered every rock from last year… there were just more of them!" If you think about it, it's very possible that riders probably trampled over some of the very same rocks the miners and their burros stumbled over 157 years ago! (People new to southwest Idaho endurance rides often ask me, "Are the Owyhee rides rocky?" I say, "I don't know, have you ever ridden in Nevada?" Because it all depends on your perspective.)
And Bailey Canyon, on the first loop, is extra famous for its extra rocks. It'll take you about an hour to get through there if you take it steadily and carefully. If you try to rush through it, you might shave a whole 5 minutes off your time.
And there's not just rocks, but 12,064 feet of elevation gain and loss to shoulder through. The SOB's are famous - 3 short but very steep Sons o' Bitches hills (which you will agree is a wholly appropriate name, once you have ridden or walked or tailed them, particularly in the high desert heat of an afternoon) that test your horse's mettle. There's the climb up Jumbo Grade to 7629 feet not that far from the top of Mt Davidson (and don't discount the climb down), plus myriad little mountains between the start and finish lines.
With the spirits of endurance riding history and tradition behind it, 70 riders showed up at the starting line for the 50th anniversary of the Virginia City 100 at 5 AM on September 16, 2017. The ride hadn't seen that many participants in 17 years.
Horses and riders were obviously stars of the 50th Anniversary show, as well. "Magnificent horses," said Jerry Gillespie, who, with his wife Martha and daughter Cheryl and son-in-law, plus a whole group of volunteers, were on site with 2 giant horse scales to conduct a dehydration/weight loss study with willing participants. The Virginia City 100 competitors were indeed a fabulous looking group of horseflesh - sleek, fit, athletic, none too heavy, none too skinny, but just right for the rigors of the trail ahead.
The biggest star on Saturday was the 10-year-old mustang named MM Woodrow (Woody), who carried his rider, Mark Montgomery to the win in a ride time of 15:13.
Mark and Woody were in third place leaving the out vet check at 24 miles, 11 minutes behind the leader Leah Cain and OT Dyamonte Santo, and 6 minutes behind Ann Marie Barnett aboard Ravens Allure. Coming up in the next 15 mile section was Bailey Canyon. "Bailey Canyon is not the place you're going to make up time," ride manager Crysta Turnage said Friday night at the ride meeting. "Be smart, take your time through there."
But Bailey Canyon is exactly where Mark and Woody made up time, and possibly even where they won the ride. They passed both Leah and Ann Marie in that canyon, arriving at the Washoe Lake vet check and 20 minute hold at 39 miles with the lead. Ann Marie was hot on Mark's tail, (both had the same out time of 10:31 AM), with Leah 25 minutes back. "That's his kind of trail," Mark said. "I wish the whole ride was like that! He just skipped through there."
Mark and Woody retained the lead throughout the ride, getting a little breathing room twice, when his nearest competitors were eliminated, first Ann Marie and Ravens Allure at 51 miles, then Leah Cain and OT Dyamonte Santo at 92 miles. The mustang finished at 11:33 PM, 36 minutes ahead of Lois Wifall and Morroccan Spice (ride time of 15:49).
Mark, from Penn Valley, California, first started in endurance in 2010 and has over 4000 miles. He's well known for the mustangs he trains and rides.
MM Woodrow has been somewhat of a phenomenon since Mark started him in endurance. He got Woody from a woman in Wyoming who couldn't train him, and who gave him to Mark as a 5-year-old. The now 10-year-old gelding has a record of 1905 miles with 33 completions in 35 starts, all but one of those in the Top Ten, and 17 first place finishes. His 4 100-mile completions include a first place in the 2016 Twenty Mule Team and a 34th place finish in this year's Tevis Cup (with rider Simone Krahnen), his last ride before Virginia City.
10th place Matt Scribner (who rode another of Mark's mustangs, MM Cody) said, "Mark made that horse. He was amazing."
Second place went to Lois Wifall and her 15-year-old gelding Morroccan Spice in 15:49. She was followed by the mother-son team of Peg Murphy-Hackley aboard HE Khem Chee and Bryce Hackley riding Sericko, in 16:14.
The biggest star on Sunday was HE Khem Chee. All the 4 horses (2nd place Morroccan Spice, 3rd place HE Khem Chee, 4th place Sericko, and 6th place Lynn Rigney and Predictable) that showed for Best Condition Sunday morning looked good - certainly not looking any worse for 100-mile wear - but Khemi looked absolutely fabulous in her trot outs.
Peg Murphy-Hackley bred her 11-year-old mare, by Khemistreetu x RT Johanna, by Wazirs Karahty. The mare has a record of 935 miles over 7 seasons, with 22 completions in 25 starts, and 4 100-mile completions, including Tevis (2013 and 2016), and last year's Virginia City (10th place). This year Peg, from Foresthill, California, earned her 1000-mile Tevis buckle, (she has also finished Australia's Tom Quilty twice) and with her second Virginia City buckle, she's hooked. "I'm a Tevis person, and now I'm chipping away at Virginia City. We'll be back!"
The ultimate star of the Virginia City 100 event is NASTR. Organized in 1968, the Nevada All-State Trail Riders came together for the purpose of preserving historical trails in Nevada by sponsoring and promoting horse back riding on these trails. It's made up of a grand group of dedicated individuals who diligently maintain the legacy of these Nevada rides with old photos and stories (did all of you get to page through the photo albums on the tables in the Ice House?), and who sink their heart and teeth into putting on several Nevada rides throughout the years, including the crown jewel, the Virginia City 100.
This year's ride manager, Crysta Turnage, declined credit. "It's all of you [NASTR members]. I'm just the face of it. This wouldn't happen without everybody's help." Consensus was that this year's was the best marked trail ever. Extra effort was put into not only the awards for the finishers (and each sponsor/award was recognized at the Sunday awards presentation), but each rider received a special 50th anniversary program, "Virginia City 100, 1968-2017 - 50 Years of Memories," containing stats of past VC rides and riders and horses, and special stories from some of the early ride pioneers.
And NASTR knows how to put on an awards ceremony. Special speakers Cliff Lewis (first VC 100 winner, and a founding member of NASTR), Phil Gardner (first 2000-mile VC buckle recipient), Connie Creech (2000-mile VC rider), and Gina Hall (owner of Fire Mt Destiny, who holds the record of 12 VC finishes and a 100% completion rate) gave a short talk, some of which had the audience either laughing or wiping away tears. Each finisher got a chance to speak if they wished.
A few more milestones were reached during this year's 50th anniversary. Shawn Bowling got his 1000-mile buckle award. Dave Rabe finished his 16th VC 100. Pat Chappell completed her 18th VC 100. And Connie Creech not only completed her 26th Virginia City ride, but her mare LS Steele Breeze finished her 4000th AERC mile, her 15th 100 mile ride, and her 5th Virginia City ride. That makes five horses that Connie has ridden to 5 Virginia City completions. (And for those of you who did not complete your first attempt at the VC ride, just keep in mind that Connie didn't finish her first one. :)
I'll conclude with a few more memorable quotes from this iconic 50th anniversary ride, which don't refer to rocks:
There's nowhere else I'd rather be then riding a horse here today. I don't have to be anywhere else. I don't have to do anything else but ride the VC 100! - Matt Scribner, 10th on MM Cody, at the 5 AM start
Last year I had "Virginia Shitty" engraved on my buckle. I like punishment. - Shawn Bowling, 37th on Rushcreek Spur, after receiving his 10th buckle
I swore off Virginia City after my second finish, but, oh well. Fergus just gets better and better. Now I have to come back. - Lucy Trumbull, 32nd on Fergus, her 5th buckle
Thanks for making me skip class and show up! - Bryce Hackley, 4th on Sericko, to his mom
You know you've *been somewhere* when you finish this ride! - Darlene Anderson, 12th on Xtreme Surprise
Folks in the know have said this ride is tougher than Tevis. It is possible they are right. - Max Merlich, 11th on TCF Miles High
Best ride EVER! - Tracy John (an Aussie), 31st on Al Marah Land Robin
Real Men Wear Jeans - Junior rider Jack Bowling 34th aboard Rushcreek Caribou, his second VC finish
To the little guy [Jack Bowling] who said real men wear jeans, Real Men Wear Shorts. - Dave Rabe, 20th on Cocamoe Joe
Well, ultimately the stars weren't quite in alignment for us yesterday and we were pulled at the 76-mile point...a combo of being both overtime and Beeba was off on the right hind at the trot.
Still, can't complain...that red mare poured her heart out for me all day long over some incredible and challenging trail. This was the longest either of us have gone before, and she headed out of camp for that second loop after 50 miles without any fuss or question. She was an energizer bunny all day, steadily eating up the miles, and eating and drinking amazingly well.
And me? More 75s and 100s, please! There's something special about these longer distances and I can't wait to do more of them.
Much more later...this was an incredible ride and I'm glad to have had the chance to start it this year. The VC magic got its hooks in me and you can be sure I'll return for another go at it! - Ashley Wingert, OT pull on The Habibah RA
Success. So grateful for all the support. I feel like one must feel when standing atop Mt Everest. To take on the huge challenge and achieve that goal. Knowing you still have work ahead to complete the journey. But treasuring the moment and the intense feelings. - Crysta Turnage, Ride Manager
More from the ride at:
Monday, September 18, 2017
September 18 2017
Mark Montgomery of Penn Valley, California, and his Wyoming mustang WW Woodrow (Woody) won the 50th running of the Virginia City 100 ride out of Virginia City, Nevada on September 16th. They completed the ride in 15 hours 13 minutes.
Coming in second was Lois Wifall aboard Morroccan Spice in a ride time of 15:49.
Third and fourth went to the mother-son Hackley team. Mom Peg Murphy-Hackley rode HE Khem-Chee, and son Bryce rode Sericko to finish in 16:14. HE Khem-Chee won Best Condition the next morning.
41 completed the ride out of 70 starters.
Finish list, photos, and more stories to come at:
Tentative Schedule *modifications below
Ride Entry Form
Corral Rentals - there are several stock panel corrals available for rent, $30 for the week. If you wish to reserve a corral, please email Regina or Steph
|Maps (click to download) or view at http://www.endurance.net/international/USA/2017AHAOwyheeCanyonlands/|
Day 1, October 6
Day 2, October 7
Day 3 100 Miles, October 8
Day 3 25/55 Miles, October 8
Live Music Saturday night! The Country Club will be playing country/bluegrass music Saturday evening from 5-7pm. Be sure to bring your 'horse/cow/ranch/rodeo' song requests!
Country Club facebook page
Update, trail modifications:
Footing is generally good with trails and dirt 2-track roads but there are rocky sections, shoes or hoof protection advised. Trails will likely be dusty in places.
Day 1 : AHA CTR Championship(40 miles), AERC 30, AHA National and AERC Open 50 mile rides will be one loop out of camp to Wildhorse Butte with a single out-vetcheck location.
Day 2 : AERC open 25, AHA/AERC open 50, ANCER/PFHA (Apaloosa, Paso Fino) 50 mile Championships will be 2 loops out of basecamp, north into Birds of Prey and south to Hart Creek (there will be more rock on this loop). Holds will be at basecamp.
Day 3: AERC open 25, AHA/AERC open 55, AERC open and AHA Championship 100 will be one big loop out of camp for 25 and 55, and 60 miles of the 100 mile event. Ride along the base of the mountains (some rocky sections along the road), drop down and ride around Sinker Reservoir, then to Wildhorse Butte and the Snake River, then home. 100 mile riders will have a 20 mile loop out of basecamp in the morning, then repeat the 20 mile loop out of basecamp for the final 20 miles.
Dinners by Two Trees Catering will be provided with ride entry, and all meals available for purchase beginning Thursday evening.
Ride entry is through AHA, so fill out their registration form at
Saturday, September 16, 2017
100 Mile Free Press, Tara Sprickerhoff
An elite rider, Anya Levermann has competed across North America, riding both her own and others’ horses in endurance events — a sport designed to test both a rider’s and horse’s teamwork, knowledge, skill and endurance.
On Sept. 23, the 16-year-old will be joining 0ver 150 athletes from 34 countries in Verona, Italy to ride at the Young Rider’s World Endurance Championships.
Levermann will be the only rider representing Canada at the event. She’ll be riding a 120 km track on Kataki, a 10-year-old Arabian mare from Bratislava.
While Levermann has her own horses that she competes with that live on her family’s property north of 100 Mile House, she also regularly rides other horses at events throughout the United States and Canada.
Endurance riding puts horses and riders on tracks of anywhere from 50 to 100 miles in distance. At regular intervals, the horses are examined by veterinarians for both a recoveries check, in terms of heart rate, and a physical check. If the horse doesn’t meet the requirements they are disqualified, or the rider can disqualify themselves if they feel something is off with the horse.
As a result, the events test the rider’s horsemanship — riders must effectively use pacing and the knowledge of their horse against the difficulties of the course.
The World Championship requires that riders complete the 120 km track in under nine hours and 50 minutes.
The track in Verona is mostly flat, says Levermann, which allows riders to ride faster. She’ll be heading to Italy a week ahead of time to do some touring, as well as to familiarize herself with the horse.
Levermann started riding endurance when she was six.
“I did my very first ride because my mom did it, and me and my sister wanted to do it too. It was something we could do with our mom.”
As a junior competitor, Levermann earned the national 100 Mile Award. Given to an American or Canadian rider under 16, the award is for the most 100 mile rides completed in a year.
Levermann had ridden eight, breaking the previous record of five.
To qualify for the world championships, Leverman had to do ten 120 km races without being disqualified.
“It’s something different. Not many people know about it. The challenge — it’s always different, it’s not always the same thing and you can do it anywhere in the world. You get to see so much, you get to experience things other people don’t.”
Training for an endurance ride is similar to training for long distance running. Horses have their distances increased in increments, and Levermann herself trains through riding regularly, running daily and playing hockey.
During an endurance ride, she says it’s nerve-wracking.
“I get stressed. I worry about the horse. If it’s my own horse I know what they are capable of. It takes a few miles for the horse to settle down because they want to go. They love doing it.”
Kataki’s owner wants Levermann to set a specific pace during the championship, other than that her goal is to finish and finish strongly.
“There’s going to be a high disqualification rate because some people just take off and go extremely fast. I just want to finish and have a healthy horse at the end.”
While she has been on rides that have been quite stressful on the body — where the terrain or track are difficult or where she needs to get off and run beside her horse — normally she finishes feeling a very little amount of soreness, she says.
Still, she’s just excited for the championships and the love of riding in general.
“It’s getting to spend all day with horses because I love them — and getting to see so much.”
Thursday, September 14, 2017
The Early Bird Drawing deadline is September 18 for Distance Horse National Championships! The ride is returning to Steph Teeter's Ranch this year in Oreana, Idaho from Oct. 6 to 8. We are very excited to have the Appaloosa Horse Club again this Fall, along with the Paso Fino Horse Association an additional partner. There will also be a live, local bluegrass/country music band playing on Saturday night, October 7.
There are several ride opportunities at the Distance Horse National Championships, including the AHA Competitive Trail Ride (CTR) National Championship starting on October 6; AHA Open CTR; American Endurance Ride Conference (AERC); Open Limited Distance and 50 Mile rides. Rides on October 7 will be the AHA 50 Mile National Championship; Appaloosa National Championship Endurance Ride; Paso Fino National Championship Endurance Ride; AERC Open Limited Distance and 50 Mile rides. Rides on October 8 will be the AHA 100 Mile National Championship; AERC Open Limited Distance; 50 Mile and 100 Mile rides.
All Open CTR, 50 Mile, 100 Mile and Open Limited Distance rides are open to ALL BREEDS and are recognized by both AHA and AERC.
As a reminder, if you own a Half-Arabian that is also a registered Appaloosa, you may enter both 50 Mile National Championship rides.
Make your plans now to attend the 2017 Distance Nationals in beautiful Oreana, Idaho! It's not too early to enter the National & Open Rides; the Early Bird Drawing deadline is September 18. To enter, please click here.
Wednesday, September 13, 2017
MDJ Sports Writer
September 13 2017
Katie Baldino, an equestrian athlete from Marietta, will compete in the FEI World Endurance Championship for Young Riders and Juniors from Sept. 22-24 in Verona, Italy.
Forty-two nations were invited to send up to five athlete/horse combinations to compete for a team and an individual title, and the 19-year-old Baldino was one of the individuals selected by the U.S. Equestrian Federation.
Endurance riding focuses on long distances and contains different variations of terrain, altitude and weather. The race is primarily conducted on a trail.
“The distance of the race is 75 miles, which is divided into 15- to 25-mile intervals,” Baldino said. “After each 15- to 25-mile interval, the horses are given a one-hour break where they can eat and relax. They are also given vet exams during their rest to make sure they are healthy and that they can continue the race.”
The Walton High School graduate races Synthetic, a grey Arabian gelding that Baldino has been competing with since May...
Read more here:
By MIKE MCGREEHAN | Correspondent
PUBLISHED: September 13, 2017
OAKLAND — From the break of dawn through the daytime’s broiling heat and into the nighttime moonlight, the Western States Trail Ride, better known as the Tevis Cup, widens and narrows over a historic Sierra Nevada trail that challenges both horse and rider up some steep inclines and near-perpendicular descents.
Over hills and through valleys, each horse and its rider must complete this 100-mile one-day trail ride within 24 hours.
This year’s Tevis Cup began at 5:15 a.m., on Aug. 5, and ended at 5:15 a.m., on Aug. 6, and saw 92 of the original 174 entries finish the race. Those who endured the full 100 miles included Mollie Quiroz and Juliana McElroy, members of a junior rider program/team known as the Dream Girls that trains out of the Chabot Equestrian Center in the Oakland hills.
Official results from the event website list Quiroz, a 14-year-old student at Redwood Christian High School, and Bishop O’Dowd student McElroy, 15, as having finished 77th and 78th, respectively. Quiroz crossed the finish line at 4:52 a.m. on Aug. 6. aboard Goose, an 8-year-old gray Arabian gelding. McElroy clocked in at 4:53 a.m., riding Chief, a 13-year-old branded chestnut mustang gelding...
Read more here:
Tuesday, September 12, 2017
Here is the Google Earth File from last year's Virginia City 100 track.
The loops shown as:
Loop 1 - Red
Loop 2 - Yellow (white?)
Loop 3 - Blue
Shown are the Vet Checks, Camp, Start, Finish, Trot-Bys, and Jumbo Hay Stop. I've also added water sources - note there will be more troughs than shown here, these are just some of the critical ones, along with "highlights" (Bailey Canyon - chortle), and locations you might want to hop off and hand-walk your horse.
The trail may vary slightly from what is shown (I found a few variations from year to year), but very minimally so.
Google Earth file:
Sunday, September 10, 2017
Please read this for important information about parking and housekeeping.
PARKING NOTICE: As most of you know, the parking at the Ice House (95 Toll Rd, Virginia City, NV) is limited and we have to conserve space as efficiently as possible. If you can trailer pool, that would be very helpful. The Storey County rock and sand piles are as big as ever in base camp. For those arriving at the Ice House Thursday afternoon (camp opens at 2:00 pm) or early Friday morning you will need to park along the back perimeters, so as not to block off any access. Please be aware of this, as we will ask you to move if there is parking behind you and no one can get to it.
If you are in the upper parking area at the Ice House, please BACK in (unload your horse first as needed) and park like the spokes of a wheel, with everyone facing out. Park as close to each other as possible. Yes, unfortunately this means that you yourself might become blocked, so plan with your neighbor a route to get your crew vehicles in and out. On the bottom level we will mark off from the entrance road a vehicle lane to access the back near the rock and sand piles.
**OVERFLOW PARKING** This year we have access to the Virginia City Rodeo Grounds at 575 H Street (see map attached). This is 1 mile from the Ice House and is better overnight accommodations for your horses. The footing is softer and there is an arena on-site you can use to turn out your horse for a while before/after the ride (take turns). For LARGE rigs, this is the better parking option as space is less limited. There will be hose water and restrooms on site.
For anyone camping at the Rodeo Grounds – we will rope off a large CREW AREA at the Ice House. You can bring your crew supplies up and treat the Ice House as an “away” check. Crews can drop off your supplies and then park their vehicles at the paved lot near the Fire House, which is less than a block from camp. It should make for easy access and quick retrieval of any forgotten items which you suddenly realize you need.
Horse camping will not be allowed on any adjacent city streets. Volunteer camping and parking will be allowed on the paved area to the right near the Fire House on Toll Road before dropping down into the Ice House or at the Rodeo Grounds (if camping). Extra crew parking will be available here also. The Fire House doors cannot be blocked in case of an emergency. NO HORSES ARE ALLOWED TO CAMP IN THE PAVED LOT.
We will have a few individuals available to assist in getting you parked. It might be a good idea for you to stop at the entrance before you drive in and take a look around before driving into camp. Once the Ice House is full, all other rigs will be directed to the Rodeo Grounds for parking.
For crews interested in staying at a motel/hotel, please see the list below:
Sugarloaf Mountain Motel - 430 South C. St. Rooms - $85.00 / (775) 847-0551 /www.sugarloafmountain-motel.com
Virginia City Motel - 675 South C. St. - Rooms - $80.00-$90.00 / (775) 847-0551 /www.virginiacityinn.com
Gold Hill Hotel - 1540 Main St. Gold Hill, - historic hotel / (775) 847-0111 /www.goldhillhotel.net
Please be prepared to clean up ALL HAY AND MANURE from your campsite – regardless of where you are camped. A dump trailer will be available at the ride site for your disposal. Please DO NOT TOSS ANY HAY OR MANURE off the side of the hill. This is very important for NASTR to receive the HEFTY cleaning deposit back. If you have laid out shavings or hay for bedding, make sure this is completely cleaned up.
Thanks so much for your cooperation. We are excited that you all will be joining us. It is going to be a great event and a lot of fun!
Please pass on this notice to anyone you may know that has not yet entered. If you have any questions, please call me at (775) 762-8086 or email at email@example.com.
Virginia City 100 Ride Manager
Nevada All-State Trail Riders, Inc.
Saturday, September 09, 2017
1968-2016 Total Completions = 1,942
1968-2016 Total Riders = 940
October 5th, 1968 marked the inaugural Virginia City 100 ride, known at its onset as the Nevada All-State Trail Ride, 100 Mile - One Day. Cliff Lewis and Dean Hubbard approached Nick Mansfield who hosted the start and finish of the Ride at his 102 Ranch in Sparks, NV. They wanted to make sure that the trail included all the great features of the area. The ride ended up being way over 100 miles - and there was a also lunar eclipse.
33 riders started, with 11 finishers - and 2 more finishers over the 24 hour limit. Horses had to carry a minimum of 150 lbs. Shannon Yewell Weil and Cliff Lewis finished first with the same time - 19 hours 41 minutes (minus the three hours of vet holds, for a 16:41 riding time). The ride chart shows that the two overtime riders - Shirley Wheeler and Mark Steen - received buckles.
The original finishing chart can be found here, along with photos from the ride that year.
This Year's Trail: Consists of three loops (51, 25, 24 miles), each returning to base camp in Virginia City. There will be an outlying vet check on the first and last loop, with (2) one hour hold vet checks at base camp. Crews will have easy access to meet riders along the trail. The trail covers hard pack and rocky terrain on historical wagon (now jeep) roads with some sandy single track footing and several mountain climbs. There is also pavement through town and across highways. Riders are responsible for their own safety while crossing paved roads. We do advise the use of pads and/or boots. Elevations range between 5000 and 7800 feet. Each loop will be marked with a different color of ribbon, along with chalk and glow sticks (after dark). Water & hay will be provided on the trail and at the two outlying vet checks. The ride will start in front of the Delta Saloon at 5:00 a.m., Saturday. Allow yourself time to get from camp to the Delta by 5:00 a.m. (approximately 20 minutes). There will be a controlled start out of town. Virginia City 100 is the final ride of the Triple Crown Challenge.
Base Camp: will be at the Ice House on Toll Road in Gold Hill. Parking will be on grindings (asphalt), and will be very crowded. There will be limited room for portable corrals. If you have the ability, it would be helpful if you could car pool. The camp site will be open from Thursday evening to Sunday evening. Horse water will be available. COME PREPARED, the elevation of Virginia City is over 6000 feet and can get cold at night. The comforts of motels and cafes can be found, as well as shopping and sightseeing within walking distance of base camp.
Overflow Parking: Due to this year being the 50th Anniversary, we are expecting a larger than normal amount of entries. Rather than limit the number of riders who can attend, we have obtained permission to have additional ride parking at the Virginia City Rodeo Arena, located at 575 H Street. The arena is 0.8 miles from the Ice House, about a 15-minute walk. We will set aside a designated crewing area at the Ice House base camp for any riders who are parked at the rodeo arena to drop off any crewing and ride supplies they would like to have accessible. Crew vehicles, sans trailer, can park in the paved county lot for volunteer parking direct next to the Ice House. There will be hay and mash available in base camp. The rodeo arena features tons of flat parking as well as space to turn out your horse before and after the ride. Horses are NOT allowed to camp in the arena or designated pens overnight. There is water and porta potties on site. All ride functions and vetting will be at the Ice House.
Directions to Base Camp:
From Reno take I-580 S/US-395 S. Take the US-395 S exit (Exit 57B) toward Virginia City/Carson City/So. Lake Tahoe. Merge onto US-395 Alt S/S. Virginia St. Turn left on to Geiger Grade/NV-341 to Virginia City. Drive through downtown Virginia City towards Gold Hill. Turn left on Toll Road (before heading down the hill). Watch for ribbons and follow to the Ice House.
From Carson City take Hwy. 50 East to NV-341, follow the truck route to the right. When you reach Virginia City turn left at the stop sign (NV-342/C Street), towards Gold Hill. Turn left again on Toll Road (before heading down the hill). Watch for ribbons and follow to the Ice House.
Calcutta: Following the pre-ride meeting, we will have a fun filled Calcutta. Payoffs will be given to buyers of the top three in each division, and announced at the awards banquet. BRING LOTS OF DOUGH; EACH AND EVERY RIDER WILL BE AUCTIONED! Your favorite horse and rider team may pay off for you!
500/1,000 Mile Horses: Horses completing the ride five times will receive a 500 mile halter. Also, horses completing the ride ten times will receive a 1,000 mile blanket.
Wednesday, September 06, 2017
September 6 Update:
AHA Distance Nationals, Owyhee Canyonlands - October 6,7,8 Footing is generally good with trails and dirt 2-track roads. Might be dusty though.
Day 1 : CTR/30/50 will be one loop out of camp to Wildhorse Butte with an out-vetcheck.
Day 2 : 30/50 will be 2 loops out of basecamp, north into Birds of Prey and south to Hart Creek (there will be more rock on this loop).
Day 3: 25/55/100 will be one loop out of camp for 25 and 55, and 60 miles for 100’s. Ride along the base of the mountains, to Sinker Reservoir, then Wildhorse Butte, then home. 100 mile riders will then have 2 twenty mile loops out of basecamp. There will be some rocky road in the morning, mostly good footing remainder of the day.
Dinners will be provided with ride entry, and all meals available for purchase beginning Thursday evening.
Ride entry is through AHA, so fill out their registration form at https://www.arabianhorses.org/.content/nat-show/dnl-show/DNL17_Entry_Form-Fillable.pdf
Unfortunately there is no Junior discount (or fee waiver) through AHA. We suggest Juniors do a fundraiser at the venue (sell cookies?) and we will try to encourage staff and riders to help with entry fees.
Info: http://www.endurance.net/international/USA/2017AHAOwyheeCanyonlands/ and https://www.arabianhorses.org/competition/national-events/distance-nationals/
We don’t anticipate problems with fires in our desert region this fall - but stay posted.