It's so exciting to see the next Nevada Discovery Ride start to come together! It brings back all those exciting pre-ride feelings of anticipation and expectation. We have what you might call a first draft of the proposed route put together. It starts and ends in Reno, making a big loop across Northern Nevada. It tops out at just over 1,000 miles, which I'm estimating we can complete in 2 1/2 months. We're thinking of a fall ride this time - heading out in August or September. What's cool about the proposed route is that we will spend the first portion on familiar terrain... We are going to ride back across the American Discovery Trail, the opposite direction from the way we rode last time. In some ways that will prove to be a nice warm-up for Sage and I, since we already know what to expect. But, we will cut off the ADT near Cave Lake and head north. The trail will eventually touch Utah, Idaho, Oregon, and California. It will include portions of the Pony Express Trail, Hasting's Cutoff, the California Trail, and the Applegate Trail. Once again it will take us through ghost towns, state parks, and wilderness, but we'll also get to ride through some new hidden Nevada gems like Jarbidge, Tuscarora, and Sheldon Wildlife Refuge. Ryan will provide much of the support of feed and water. We're aiming for next year - 2015.
Of course anyone who followed the first ride knows just how much planning goes into a long ride. Now that we have a first draft route we need to scout questionable sections, make TOPO maps, and fix/replace gear from the last ride! I'll also need to try to talk people into helping. (Who is going to house/pet sit this time? Mom? Mom???) But this next year will be fun (and challenging) as the ride continues to morph and change until we're ready to hit the trail. Did I mention that Ryan and I both are still at the University of Nevada, Reno working on degrees and working full time too?? It will no doubt be a busy year ahead...
In other news, winter is severely delayed in our neck of the woods. Not great for the Sierra Nevada snow pack, but great for riding. Sage and I have been out and about as much as we can. Often, we're lucky to ride with great friends. Bella is still accompanying us on the trail as well. She seems to enjoy the day rides as much as we do, zigzagging across the desert chasing jackrabbits. Sage is doing well. Today he and Geo got adjusted by a new chiropractor. Sage was a little tight in his poll and the bottom of his spine, but it was nothing a few good cracks couldn't alleviate.
I'm still making the rounds regionally giving talks on the ride. This month we were honored to be invited to speak at the Nevada State Museum in Carson City. Nearly 100 people came out to hear about our adventures! It was a wonderful crowd. We have a few more talks in the works, and I'll add them to the website as soon as they are confirmed. I'm happy to share tales from the trail with anyone that wants to listen - from horse aficionados to city slickers. If you'd like to book an entertaining and educational presentation on long riding, wild horses, and the beauty of Nevada just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The latest updates from Samantha on the Nevada Discovery Ride.