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National Drive some more!

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  • National Drive some more!

    Okay, I'm going to finalize the National Drive hotel arrangements today, so if there are any last minute changes or additions, please let me know!

    It's quite crisp outside this morning, and it reminded me of how sweet the mornings were in Kentucky during last year's National Drive. For a while after lunch you'd be in your shirtsleeves, but in the morning and the late afternoon the air had a definite crisp bite of fall. Early on a couple of evenings a mist settled over the green and rolling countryside, magical to drive through as the sun set and the light haze changed colors.

    I had never had such long distances to drive before, without having to turn around and go back! The grassy stretches on the Rolex cross-country course made Sparrow's hooves dance, and to have right-of-way on the paved roads was a real treat.

    This year, as I won't be bringing my own horse, I intend to catch as many of the free clinics as possible. I didn't make it to one last year, as I was too excited by the driving possibilities! The opportunites to learn from such expertise are a rare treat for me, out here in Mississippi.

    But I learned just as much from the other COTH drivers and the rest of the many and varied turnout crews that we met. I've been going to horse shows and horse gatherings for most of my life, and in all those years I've never been surrounded by so much fine horsemanship, laid-back hospitality and genuine joy in the pursuit of perfection as during those four days last October.

    Over the next few days I will endeavour to find out where our stalls are, because it can be a little confusing when you first pull in if you've not been there before.

    If you have any other questions for which I can try to find answers while I'm on the phone, please let me know.

    Roll on the National Drive!

  • #2
    Okay, question: Where's that vendor list?? I want to know what to drool over! LOL

    Leia
    Hey look, I joined ANOTHER forum! And you thought horses were addictive.

    Comment


    • #3
      OMG... this time next week we'll be packed and ready to go! Looking forward to seeing all of you. And Dale, I might need more than ballast. I've been having a bout of tennis elbow (from driving)
      Pat Belskie - ASHEMONT Farm

      PnP Distributors - KUTZMANN Carriages
      Ashemont2@gmail.com

      Comment


      • #4
        I need another month.

        If I had another month I'd be ready, maybe. Bob Giles got back Sat night and Sunday we put a unicorn together. Monday I hauled 4 Caspians to his house and we hitched the 4 in hand. It was a bit rough around the edges but Bob was able to drive them. We did 4 miles. Today we were rained out so tomorrow we go for it again on the 4.

        It was Bob, Brenda, Cheppy, Mary and I all working to get them harnessed and hitched. Bob continues to plan to use them in hitches up to four in hand at the National Drive so again,,,,,,,, Dale if you are available there will be times when we really need your help.

        We should be some of the first people and horses in as Bob is to be on duty as a clinician at 8 AM Wed. Probably some sort of clinician meeting or something. We are now planning to drive straight through as Bob will be with me and we can switch off driving the truck.

        Discovered yesterday that one brake pad is completely worn out on the carriage. Cheryl is to overnight a set to me tomorrow. I have to go get another load of hay and lay in more feed so Cheppy does not run out while we are gone.


        Looking forward to seeing everybody.

        Dick

        Comment

        • Original Poster

          #5
          You know I'll be delighted to help any way I can!

          I feel very, very fortunate that I have such special good friends to see again and new ones to meet at this event.

          (inarticulate noises signaling delighted anticipation)

          Dale

          Comment


          • #6
            Since I'll have Maggie there this year I know Joe will be happy to have company behind Phoenix if anyone's inclined And Dick, don't you dare forget I get a go behind your little horses this year. Since we'll both be there for the full time I expect we'll manage it this year

            Whoo-hooo! We should actually BE there by this time next week!!!!
            Pat Belskie - ASHEMONT Farm

            PnP Distributors - KUTZMANN Carriages
            Ashemont2@gmail.com

            Comment


            • #7
              I fly out the day after tomorrow! I'll have a little horse there but expect to be available to ride behind anyone and everyone as I really want to get a feel for some of the bigger rigs that we don't have back West. (You rarely see a four-in-hand of any size here, for instance.)

              Leia
              Hey look, I joined ANOTHER forum! And you thought horses were addictive.

              Comment


              • #8
                4 in hand

                Leia I'd say four in hands of any size are sort of rare anywhere. The inputs required are pretty daunting.

                Look forward to meeting you.

                Dick

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  'Allo, Dick! and etc.

                  Hi. I just sent you a PM, in case you didn't notice.

                  I'm still trying to squeeze info about shopping and stall numbers out of the very very busy office. Big turnout this year. It should be WONDERFUL! I'll let everyone know when I have more information.

                  Roll on!

                  Dale

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Just found out this morning that my neighbor will NOT be going. Two of her ponies have eye infections and need treatment every 3 hours plus her buddy can't make it That frees up 4 stalls and one hotel room (for the weekend) and leaves us with 1/2 a tack stall to share if anyone is interested.
                    Pat Belskie - ASHEMONT Farm

                    PnP Distributors - KUTZMANN Carriages
                    Ashemont2@gmail.com

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I would give about anything to be putting Tootsie in the trailer to head that way!! I do not, however, have anything, since our truck required a new transmission last week in North Carolina!!(A LONG story will follow shortly) You ALL have a great time, and I look forward to meeting everyone NEXT year.....

                      Nancy

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        pushing hard

                        We have been pushing as hard as possible to get the four in hand going. On sunday we drove a unicorn with little Onyx out front. On Monday we drove a 4 with Onyx and Triumph out front. On Tuesday we were rained out. On Wed we drove the 4 with Onyx and Triumph out front again and crashed through some unexpected flooded areas out on the trails. Those boys were in water up to their bellies. Bob was whooping and hollering and they charged right on through. Four deep water crossings!

                        Today we hauled to Bobs again and hitched the four. We've been switching sides every day and today Triumph stayed straight and did not lean on the collar chain. Little Onyx did not once leave the ground. He completely refrained from doing the airborne pony act. Kiyan did not try to bite Arman except for one half hearted attempt AND I WAS DOING THE DRIVING.

                        Just a progress report.

                        Dick

                        Comment

                        • Original Poster

                          #13
                          that sounds wonderful, Dick! Now, can you teach them to do the aerial things and stuff on command, just for entertainment value?

                          Can't wait to see them!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by kearleydk View Post
                            Leia I'd say four in hands of any size are sort of rare anywhere.
                            Actually we have more multiples than singles around here, it seems! I've got 2 friends who have 4's of ponies and several in our driving club have 4's of horses. Makes me feel a little silly sometimes with just one little pony!

                            Must confess when I moved the mares up front today for the horse dentist and then turned them out with Phoenix I kept watching as he and Patricia (our black Hanoverian mare) moved along together. A bit of difference in size, but not in type or stride. I really, really think we need to see if she'll drive .... and Joe has already said he'd like to try getting Phoenix's daughter, Mehru, broken to drive. Well, there's a unicorn. Just would need one more black horse.....

                            Oooops! Time to stop daydreaming

                            To get back on track, we got the health certificates on Phoenix and Maggie today. Body clipped Maggie (and she's STUNNING!). Tomorrow is farrier. We deliver a horse and pony over the weekend and then it's time to pack for The Drive!!!!!
                            Pat Belskie - ASHEMONT Farm

                            PnP Distributors - KUTZMANN Carriages
                            Ashemont2@gmail.com

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              farrier

                              well Pat I'm a little ahead on some things. My vet was doing the health cert. the day before yesterday. Over the past two days I've given the boys a light hoof trim. I did it myself so nobody got too industrious with the knife and rasp. They needed a little trim but I sure don't want sore feet at this point.

                              I hope to drive 'em again today, Sat and Sunday, but today looks rainy again. Yesterday the nursery got 5 inches while the farm got less than 1/4 inch and Bob Giles farm continues to get no rain. Crazy weather.

                              Today the truck is scheduled for service and pre trip check-up by Duncan.

                              Sat or Sunday I have to pick up a load of hay so the rest of the herd will be fed while we are gone.

                              WE'RE GETTING THERE!

                              Dick

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Farrier yesterday, hope everyone remembers something for the slippery asphalt!!! Vet on Monday for the full treatment, chrio/acupunture/health certificate. After that, Poppy gets off until we get there to let it all soak in. I was looking on the KHP website for information on the CDE and found that they are having a Fjord happening while we are there. Anyone interested in Fjords should certainly make time for it. One of my friends is bringing her Fjord mare.
                                Now if the seals for my batmobile would just get here, I would have that ready too.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Maggie is barefoot - has never had shoes and has GREAT feet. Phoenix will get borium tipped nails but I don't think I can do anything for Maggie. Dick, aren't your guys barefoot? Did you have any problems on the asphalt last year?
                                  Pat Belskie - ASHEMONT Farm

                                  PnP Distributors - KUTZMANN Carriages
                                  Ashemont2@gmail.com

                                  Comment

                                  • Original Poster

                                    #18
                                    getting closer now!

                                    If you've followed Off Course at all, you'll know that our little neighborhood of horsepeople suffered a tragedy on Wednesday. It has somewhat dampened our preparations for the National Drive, but yesterday we caught up with the rest of you, getting farriery and health certificate for Little River.

                                    I do wish I could bring Sparrow! But she will probably benefit from a break. She's working very hard for me right now, bringing along beginners and advanced riders alike, as well as going out for drives two to four times a week. She's been very much a part of conditioning Little River for the National Drive. Little River, at 30", has to trot sturdily to keep up with Sparrow!

                                    The great thing about this conditioning program for Little River is that I've found Sparrow's "other gears." She's always sprung from walk to full-bore trot, large-striding, elevated, enthusiastic. To give the VSE a chance of staying on the same stretch of road with us, Sparrow has had to let me teach her a nice, steady trot, still well-elevated and round, but much slower.

                                    I swear that Sparrow understands what we're doing when we're out with Little River! On curves she peeks around her blinkers to see where the other cart is, and asks if I want her to slow down when she sees Becky and the mini too far behind.

                                    I'm very excited about finding new equipment for Little River, equipment that will fit her correctly and balance well enough to make pulling as close to effortless as possible. Becky has a 10 am Thursday lesson with Bob Giles, which we hope will set us up for some inspired shopping.

                                    I hope that the weather in Kentucky will be more amenable than it is here. I am SO ready for fall!

                                    Can't wait to see you all --

                                    Dale

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Almost ready to go here!

                                      Health Certificate is in the mail from the vet and should arrive today. Coggins is good. Ms. Priss got new shoes with some light borium tack yesterday. Vehicle and trailer are checked out and ready to go. USRider membership is set up. KHP here we come!

                                      Can't wait to meet everyone and their ponies!

                                      Pam

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by MySparrow View Post
                                        I'm very excited about finding new equipment for Little River, equipment that will fit her correctly and balance well enough to make pulling as close to effortless as possible. Becky has a 10 am Thursday lesson with Bob Giles, which we hope will set us up for some inspired shopping.

                                        I hope that the weather in Kentucky will be more amenable than it is here. I am SO ready for fall!

                                        Dale
                                        Heh, we jumped from summer to full winter here with no fall at all. It hasn't stopped pouring rain in two weeks and the temps have been in the 40's and 50's for the daytime! Yuck. I'm ready for some SUN!

                                        I am more than happy to help you and Becky shop for Ms. River. There is some increasingly good material out there and I have personal experience with most of it at this point. That's me, the VSE Personal Shopper and Harness Fitter! I love doing that, it's so much fun. There's nothing like finally getting that driving setup just right....

                                        I'm off to the airport now!! See you all whenever you get there.

                                        Leia
                                        Hey look, I joined ANOTHER forum! And you thought horses were addictive.

                                        Comment

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