I've done a few of these events on and off over the last few years and really suck at them. My husband and I usually do them with his parents and after the first couple of clues, I just give up and tag along for a nice trail ride. Unless no one listens to me when I say we're about to get hit with a severe storm when we are miles from the campground, then it turns into a pretty shitty ride, but I digress.
|I didn't get any pictures Saturday, so you get recycled cuteness.|
In a CMO, you are given a map and a list of clues such as "94 degrees TTM from the horizontal log, 158 degrees TTM to the crooked branch by the field". You use the map to get you in the general area, then use a compass and these "landmarks" to triangulate a small area. You're looking for a paper plate that you can see from horseback and write down the code on the plate. It's a timed event.
The plates this weekend were quite hard to find. But I actually found one! Never found one on my own before. I'm that person where you can be pointing at something right in front of my face and I still won't see it. So finding a plate was exciting. It was also the first time I was with a team that found all the plates. People who find all the plates place above those who don't, despite your time.
We were out for about 3 1/2 hours. It's the longest I've been in my western saddle and I'm not sure how I feel about it. My right ankle and knee were hurting after the first half hour. My ankle had also been bothering me while trotting during my last lesson, so I'm not sure what's going on there. I do know there were some sore spots on me where the edge of the seat was digging into the back of my thighs a bit. It felt more bruised than rubbed raw though. I was very glad to have the cordura on my saddle when we were just about swimming through the creek crossing though.
This ride was a confidence boost I really needed. We did a lot of trotting and some cantering (but I still can't sit the canter in a saddle, instead, I did 2 point, or some variation of that for most of it). When we got back, I kind of forgot that I was in a western and didn't get my leg high enough over the cantle. It was a less than stellar dismount. Oh well.
Now I'm feeling more confident and am ready to ride the boy, but it's supposed to storm. Hopefully it will last.