Category Archives: Adventures on Horseback.

A Beautiful Day in Kershope Forest UK.

Sunday 14th May 2023, I awoke to a sun bright day. Stunning start, my friend and I travelled to Kershope Forest, and without much ado, we were off.

The dogs were in fine firm, scurrying here and there, sniffing and snorting in every bush, grass tussock and beck.

The horses felt the spring, and responded by being agile and full of go, it was great to feel the response.

We covered a good 15 miles, the temperature rose to a delightful 72 degrees, warmest it’s been since last year.

I for one thoroughly enjoyed our ride, Lynne smiled the whole way round, we finished with hot coffee and sandwiches. Freshly brewed coffee!

Great day.

Langdale Pikes Lake District UK

Many times I have rode the hills around my country, sometimes it’s good weather, sometimes bad.

But never has it disappointed me. Although I’m slowing down, I feel like I’m just a boy, sadly that is no longer so, it’s such a shame that Youth, is wasted on the young!

By the time you learn to appreciate your life, it’s almost too late, older, without the strength and physicality to do more. So I do what I can, when I can.

Film Making

I was invited to take part in a film back in September of 2019, the end result was a great film.

Unfortunately it wasn’t to be, various issues arose, mainly due to personalities. Eventually it was shelved. However, some fine shots of myself(?) and my horse Gracie were taken, and I was lucky enough to get permission to use them.

Then in 2022, another bite at the industry??

So off we toddled to Scotland again, it was rehash of the first film, with different characters. Anyway, we’ll see what the end results will be. As yet, I believe the film is still in the editing stage.

No doubt I’ll end up on the cutting room floor.

Helvellyn English Lake District UK

It was a good ride. 6am saddle up, and it was just getting light. Cold, but not too bad, horses nostrils pushing breath into the air.

Rachel, Lynne and myself, good horses and great company set the scene. Helvellyn sits behind the sharks fin shaped hill in the shot above. Hidden in the cloud. Our route follows the ridge line to the right of the same shot.

Straight ahead for Helvellyn.
Toby and me.

By the time we had gotten to 3000 feet, the temperature was way down, hence the odd shaped hat! Then the clouds rolled in,and the strong winds roared around us like Banshees.

Sometimes doing the right thing is hard, especially since this was Lynne’s first go round. But it was getting a bit unsafe for us and the horses. So down we came. Still a great day.

MTB’ers good craic!

Notes on a Miserable Month.

The weather has been decidedly crap! For winter, it’s been mild wet and windy, the fields are a mess, and everything is just mud forever. Then we get this!

Overnight it froze, -10c and four days later it thawed.

Then it froze again, and now we’ve got snow again. Never know what it’s gonna do!

On a lighter side, Christmas has come and gone, phew!

Bloody Bush

Bloody Bush Monument

After a quiet month, since my last sojourn up Helvellyn, I have done nothing. It has rained relentlessly, strong winds and alternating mild and cold.

Beautiful Scottish Moor.

However, yesterday, I was out!….Friends asked me to ride with them across the English Scottish Border at a place called, Bloody Bush!

On the left is Scotland, and on the right England. The Border.

Bloody Bush!…So named after a violent skirmish between the English and Scottish Reivers and other ne’r do wells! That was at least 500 years ago, now, there stands a huge Monument, where the incident took place. It was also recognized as the ‘Place of Toll,’…..where travellers paid a duty on any goods they had.

So back to the ride. It had rained all the previous day, right up until I arrived at Newcastleton. Just to show I’m a righteous person, the sun came out, together with a stiff breeze, and fast moving clouds. My two friends had also arrived, suitably booted and spurred we set off on a ten mile route across forest and moor, a wonderful ride, my two dogs, and my friends dogs, made it look like a hunting party!

Fabulous day.

Friday 16th September 2022…… Helvellyn.

Helvellyn Summit.

3111 feet high, it commands a central position in the Lake District, a National Park in the UK.

Centuries ago, the Packhorse Routes criss crossed these mountains, carrying Salt, Lead, Graphite and many other useful products to places far and wide, via the sea ports on the west coast of Britain. One such route crossed this Mountain Summit. When we travelled this route, on a warm sunny day, although by the time we reached it, it was bitterly cold, the first signs of winter flowing South on a North wind. As I turned my collar to the cold, I felt my horse Toby, agree. Time to head down.

Great ride, and spectacular views.

Views from the summit. Red Tarn below, and Ullswater in the distance.

The Cost.

I hear it all the time from folks, saying how?….”I can’t afford a horse, it’s so expensive!”

I tend to be of the view, that it’s only as expensive as you want it to be, and what you want. You could just buy a nag, a horse that will do most things, but in other people’s eyes, ain’t worth a shit. It all depends on you. Rescue horses, they’re all out there, just look. Keep your costs low by being self aware, learn how to be your own veterinarian, as far as you can. Don’t waste money on gadgets and trends. But most of all, don’t listen to those who think they know better than you, as there’s plenty out there. Do your own thing, be honest with yourself and the horse.

Sunset on Ullswater

Sunset above Ullswater

A late afternoon ride with friends turned into a late home ride in the dark.

We waited until the last rays of the sun sank behind Blencathra, then we dawdled away back to Scales Farm.

A beautiful evening marred by absolutely nothing. Even the rising of the Blood Moon, was extraordinary, it was a calm Red or in the night sky, as I drive home.

Toby did his job tonight despite his night blindness. He strode out from the group, occasionally he stumbled, but he immediately corrected himself. A good horse. Or should I say, a fine horse in new country.