For context I’ve been in and around endurance for over 20 years. Seen so many great rides have disappear recently I took my young mare to her first 50 I saw some people I knew and lots of new faces but I was shocked at how stand offish most people were. I haven’t been to a ride since before the pandemic. If this is happening at most rides I can see new people not wanting to get involved or showing up again. That and coupled with the cost of entries and everything else most people (at least here in the US) are just barely making ends meat, horses now are a luxury. I’ve just stuck to trail riding and doing mileage on my own terms.
The quote above is your entire thread-leader post. What is your question?
Are you asking about the future of competitive endurance, or just about your future in competitive endurance?
Your “context” didn’t go any further than your own recent decision that horses are expensive and you will just trail ride. OK.
You haven’t said anything about the current state of competitive endurance, or what decisions you feel it should face, other than one time in the distant past people were not friendly to you.
Could you clarify with more details about what you want to ask?
Welcome to the forum!
I can see why you wanted to vent! I’m sorry you noticed such changes in your sport since you last competed. Did you get a chance to touch base with any of the familiar faces you mentioned? They might have some thoughts on whether your experience was maybe a one-off vs. a developing trend. I don’t have any endurance experience and only a little with judged trail rides many moons ago, so I have no anecdotes to share. I’m sure other endurance riders will be along to comment.
Sweetie I was just venting thanks for the confirmation of why I stay away from these forums
Nomad, I hear ya, even for the organized trail rides in my area. It seems to me that years ago, there were several rides a month, in different areas, but all within a one-hour trailer ride from my suburban area. Now, there are a few per season, it seems.
I think alot of the older horsewomen who organized the rides have retired, and for whatever reason it can just be harder to get younger people to step up. Younger women may have children, or be showing on those prime weekends, or be so tired from working longer hours at higher-stress jobs, that it just feels like too much to get organized to load the trailer, load the horse, etc. A shame, because I absolutely loved horse-camping, etc. the few times I tried it. So proud of my horse, so much fun to meet new people, etc.
My own experience is that everyone is just spread too thin these days. Even if people are still working from home, there is some psychosocial thing going on that makes people too tired to do things outside of the routine. And, as horsekeeping gets more expensive, you just have fewer people overall, so that changes the dynamic.
I know that I was profoundly grateful for the kind and funny people who mentored me on a few CTRs.
My hope is that you just met up with a sourpatch bunch at the last ride, but if you keep going on more rides, you’ll find your people. Maybe the electronic bulletin boards at Ridecamp or whatever might point you toward some people who actually enjoy being at a ride and interacting with other like-minded people… And if not, there is always just the fantastic-ness of you and your horse moving down the trail, with your horse in its element and you admiring the equine athleticism that is unique to the trail. Keep the faith! What region are you in?
I’m in AERC’s northeast region and occasionally head down to SERA too. I can’t say that I’ve experienced people being unfriendly at a ride. As to expensive, obviously what each person can afford is personal to them but I think endurance rides are still a steal of a deal when it comes to horse sports. I’m going up to do the Fall Endurance Ride at GMHA in Vermont this Saturday- for the just over $200 entry fee, I get a camping spot, a stall for two nights with bedding, the ride, food, all the vettings etc. Conversely I have several friends going to CBLM championships in NJ on the same day. My $200 doesn’t even cover their stall for the day lol
can you be more specific about how and when people were being standoffish? and people like other riders or vets or management?
I have not found rides to be unfriendly, but may be some regional differences.