Saturday, 19 March 2011

In which she starts to wonder...

...just how big a challenge she's really taken on.  A little knowledge as they say can be a dangerous thing, and I keep getting little snippets of information about the Ullswater Ride - and most specifically about something called Loadpot Hill.  Now that sounds quite cute doesn't it - like the gentle sort of undulation you might find in Bilbo Baggins territory perhaps. Or then again, perhaps not.
Why am I starting to think it's maybe not exactly benign?  Because all the riders who've done it seem to speak of it in tones of respect if not downright awe.  I've actually detected a definite bond between Those Who Have Done Loadpot, and spotted a certain gleam in their eyes when they look upon those who are about to do it for the first time.
So - deciding I really should find out more - I googled it.  Which is where the dangerous knowledge bit comes in.  I found a newspaper report from 2006 when the ride was very nearly called off altogether because 'the weather threatened to make the planned route over Loadpot Hill, at 671 metres high, too dangerous for the horses.'  And I found a walker's report which simply said ominously that Loadpot is not a good place to be in the mist.  
Hey ho.  At least I can reassure myself that they've never actually misplaced a rider there - or not for long anyway.  Also - I'm going to be in excellent company.  Alas Ros Denby who was originally going to accompany me has had to change her plans, but Jean Gilbert has stepped up to take her place, and she has enormous experience of endurance riding, so I know I'll be in good hands.
Bounce and I have been making the very most of the lovely weather we've been having over the past few days, but I rather suspect any optimism about Spring arriving might yet turn out to be a tad premature.  Still - we'll enjoy it while it lasts.
Today's photo is of my other horse Barra Lad, who is definitely feeling that his nose has been pushed out of joint since Bounce is getting all the attention.  Barra Lad is also an ex-racer, but he's a real pipe and slippers sort of chap who doesn't even like taking the lead when out hacking with another horse, so was certainly never destined for greatness on the track.  I don't care though - he's a thoroughly nice character and we get along very well together.  So here he is...

1 comment:

  1. You are right about Loadpot hill! Not to be taken lightly. I have rode it several times, not in Endurance, but as a ride across to High Street. I have to say that the views can be Brill!! But the weather is essential. So Good Luck! May the weather be good!! Looking forward to a good report.