Site Users

This site is not optimized for mobile access.  Would you like to access from a mobile device?
41 Vote
7 Vote

Subscribe for updates




We’re glad you stopped by to visit our website on distance driving. Perhaps you’ve just discovered MDDA and want to learn more about just what we do. Perhaps you’ve come to check the schedule to see when and where competitive drives are being held or check the results of past drives. Or perhaps you are just interested in looking at some photographs of our horses and drivers at the various competitions. Whatever the reason, thanks for browsing and drop us a line if we can answer any questions or be of service to you.

Stored Msgs

Puzzle Fun

Scooter Jigsaw Puzzle Katz and Talon Jigsaw Puzzle Jane and Wes Jigsaw Puzzle Glenn & Junior Jigsaw Puzzle
Join MDDA now!     Check out what drivers like about distance driving (right sidebar)

Future Events


Sunday Singles – 20 mile

Place Driver Horse Points
1 Katz Jackson Talon (Morgan) 371
2 Mary Clapper Benjamin (Rocky Mountain) 330

Colorama 2007

By Katz Jackson

“To go or not to go?”, that was the question I posed to myself off and on all day on Saturday, September 15, 2007 prior to finally deciding to drive north for the second day of the “Colorama Ride & Drive”, near Merrill, WI.  As an MDDA member, I also wanted to help represent our club at the event.  The weather was just about perfect, I had already missed the Saturday drive

due to other conflicts, but could make it for the Sunday event if I left either the evening before or at some ungodly hour of the morning on the 16th. The first really hard frost came the Friday evening before, too, in the Merrill area, so I wouldn’t have to worry about mosquitoes for a change.  That in itself would be a relief!

At some point I decided to call the ride manager to find about the route and the terrain, and thought I’d consider her recommendations before making up my mind. After all, 150+ miles one way would be quite a hike for a one day drive. Also, I just plain hesitated, since my valiant driving steed, “Feather Ridge Talon”, was totally barefoot, with no chance of getting shoes
any time soon. We also didn’t have a single pair of Easy Boots that fit.  The ride manager pretty much discouraged me from going, due to the trails being mainly on remote, but gravel, winding roads. But, by the time we got off the phone, I had pretty much decided that we may as well put the Morgan toughness to test, black feet and all, and see if we could persevere for the 20 mile drive. I carried a good set of directions with me and had it close at hand for the last few miles of campground searching, which was bound to be in the dark.

We hit the road right around dusk on Saturday evening and arrived up in the .Merrill neck of the woods around 11:00 PM, knowing that the campground was .full with no corrals, and no chance of setting up a portable one, either, at such a late hour. It was really dark, really chilly following the first super hard frost the night before, and I finally got parked knowing that Talon would be spending the whole night tied to the trailer for the first time, all alone from her usual traveling companion, her sire, “Bethesda Horus”.

She cooperated nicely for the short night, chomping on her endless supply of hay-in-a-bag and water, and I actually was able to catch some much-needed “z’s”, tucked under my feather comforter before the inevitable early rising and shining for the first vet check-in of the day. It didn’t hurt to have another endurance riding horse tied to his trailer less than 40 feet away.

Sunday morning we got up nice and early, went to our pre-dawn vet check, starting out with a pre-drive pulse of 12 and a respiration of 3. That made me very happy, especially when complimented by all “A”‘s in dehydration, CRT, mucus membranes, anal tone, with only a “B” in gut sounds. I don’t know how she ever got a “B” in gut sounds with all that hay munching
throughout the night. All other areas were well within the acceptable range, so when we got our driving directions, my main concerns were to take off on the correct route-as usual-and to somehow carry out the entire 20 mile drive without getting sore with those bare feet. Our departure time was 8:05 AM, following club member, Mary Clapper, who departed 5 minutes
before us. Elinore Tonsor told me to arrive back at 12:15 PM for my final arrival time, so I took off for my first 10 miles, hoping so much that Talon would stay sound. I questioned my own personal mental soundness for taking a barefoot horse on all those stones, but somehow we managed to make it through the first 10 miles without incident, and made it through the second
vet check with a P & R of 11/3, which again made me very happy and proud of Talon.

But, now we had to do it one more time, that is, complete the second 10 miles without getting sore feet or having any other problems. It turned out to be a gorgeous day for driving, with fall in the air, leaves just beginning to change color, and that crispness that invites a little adventure. The majority of the route was on “Loop Road”, which was so narrow that there was barely room for a horse and cart to pass each other, much less a pick-up truck or other larger vehicle. The ditches were practically non-existent, so there was very little opportunity for getting off the road to avoid the stones. A couple of pretty scary culverts showed up along the way, too, and an imaginary monster or two, but nothing more serious. I was so thankful that we hardly passed anyone, and that Talon was willing to take advantage of the tiny stretches of ditch that would give some relief for her potentially aching feet.

We arrived back at the finish at exactly 12:15 PM, thanks to Elinore’s rather definitive instructions to me, and as it turned out, Talon stayed sound, her strong black Morgan feet held up, as did her stamina and overall soundness, and we ended up with another P & R of 11/3, which bumped us up into first place. Another fine time to be proud of all our desires to enjoy our horses and put them to the test while we do things that we so much enjoy.  By the looks of all the horses’ ears, eyes, and overall demeanor, they were definitely enjoying the whole experience as much as we were, so cheers and kudos went out to everyone.

But… next time, mosquitoes or no mosquitoes, driving preparation time or no driving time, due to undesirable weather conditions in preceding weeks, I think I just might put that call in to the farrier before he goes away on that long annual vacation. It sounds like a good idea in retrospect to get some shoes on my horse a couple weeks ahead of time-just in case we might be able to go to the next scheduled drive.

Happy fall to everyone! Hopefully there’s something out there for all horse lovers and owners to pursue and enjoy to the fullest with our fine equine friends this season.

Leave a Reply




You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>