Riding Outdoors Endurance or Trail Riding

Natalie Edwards and HS Jibran
Natalie Edwards and HS Jibran

Recently the Scottish Endurance Riding Club (Dumfries Branch) organised a pleasure/intro or taster short/long distance ride near Three Lochs, Kirkcowan.

The aim in endurance is to pace the united skills of horse and rider against the clock and bring a sound and happy horse “fit to continue“ home at a chosen speed. Pleasure ride windows are between 8kph or 5mph and 11kph or 6.85 mph

Shiela McConnell and Knockandys Fancypants

Shiela McConnell and Knockandys Fancypants

A spokesperson for the club said: “With so much adverse publicity re endurance riding in group 7 countries there seems to be lots of unfair crit hanging over all endurance riders. In general (but of course there are always the few who let us down) horse welfare is one of our many challenges.

“Serc rules are geared to educate all newcomers to take each grade seriously and as shown by results to follow there was much variation on achievements. Newcomers tend to either be too slow or too fast . In some cases at this ride there was such a lot of riders with all sorts of aims, folk winding down used to higher goals but so chuffed to get round, folk with mounts new to them or young horses maybe out at an endurance ride for a first time (these mounts wondering why this vet was checking for heart rate etc, mostly were thinking vets give jabs so try to avoid them!)

“Most seasoned pleasure riders aim for around 9/10 kph and next step deemed training at over 9kph on preparation for competitive where we have Speed 3 (9.5-10.99 ); Speed 2 ( 11-12.99 ); Speed 1 over 13 kph. That of course is where fitter horses and riders are and longer distances live!”

Local riders best achievements:

Pleasure - Sheila Mc Connell and Knockandys Fancy Pants 8.65 kph heart rate 44

Taster - Steff Singleton Huckleberry Pie 8.4 kph heart rate 44

Also last Sunday a dozen riders from Galloway Trail Riders Group met in shore carpark at Monreith & enjoyed a lovely hack in quiet tracks around village & along shores of White Loch of Myrton weather was ideal for riding & lovely to meet some friends from “old Ayrshire days “ joining in .

In all around 10 miles plus icing on cake a wee blast on beach “ cooling off was the expression I overheard !!!!”