2017 Grizzly Mtn Ride Wrap Up

I have a few things to say about the ride…obviously, but I want to start with lost and found though so it doesn’t get lost in the mix.


UPDATE! Both headstalls and the hoof boot have been claimed and will be reunited with their owners!

Does anyone recognize these headstalls? They were both left in the vet area in camp. A black Renegade boot was also left there. Any takers?

They’re pretty nice! I’d be crying by now if I had lost one of these. Contact me if one of them is yours so I can get it back to you! Same with the hoof boot!


Jessica Wynne was our ride photographer, and she got some spectacular shots! Because she is also my daughter, and the mother of my two awesome grandsons, she and my son in law, Justin stayed over for Easter, much to my joy! They headed home today, Monday, so you can expect to see her pictures posted to her Smugmug account any time.

Your ride photos are available here:

Jess photos

Thank you for your patience!


Last year when Max and I decided to go ahead and take the reins to the Grizzly Mtn Ride, we knew we wanted to sort of do what we did at the Mt Adams Ride. Take a great ride and make it even better, if possible.  We foolishly thought that the Grizzly Mtn Ride would be substantially easier than the Mt Adams Ride. HA!! WRONG!

Max dealt with all of the USFS wrangling and I am so glad he did! I just don’t have the moral fortitude for the paperwork and “stuff” that goes into getting the permits to ride on public lands. Max is a born negotiator though and did a superb job of dealing with the local office in Prineville. We did find out, through this experience, that there is more than one department in that office and the departments don’t communicate well at all. Just a few weeks prior to the ride we found a bunch of juniper trees felled right into our trail! A quick get together of PNER friends cleared up that problem.

3-18-17 Grizzly Trail Work Crew

The Grizzly Mtn Trail Gang! PNER Members, Elayne Barclay, Leonard Bottleman, Max Merlich, Holly and Les Rouska and Darlene Anderson, flanked by Blake and Rocky, AND Adakai!

The easiest part of the Grizzly Mtn Ride, this year, was finding a new ridecamp, since teh old one is for sale now. Sara and Roger Miller willingly and happily “donated” space for us! They are located right on the trail, so it was a no brainer!



The view of ridecamp from atop Kathleen Ferguson’s trailer!

We began marking the trails about a week ahead of the ride, finishing the last trail on Thursday before the ride.

Low and behold, reports came in on Saturday morning (yes, ride day!) that a portion of our trail had been obliterated by the infamous juniper eradication crew!

Fortunately, the riders going through there showed some finely tuned critical thinking skills and made their way through the fallen trees. I thank you all for that! We were so excited about this new trail! I feel like the moment was ruined by this, but hardly anyone complained! Thank you for that!

I am very particular, as a ride manager, about how things get done at “my” ride. From the way the camp is laid out, how the trot lanes work out, where the waters are set, whether or not there are enough porta-potties, and most especially, how the trail is marked.  I’ll just say it, trail markings are probably my biggest AR hang-up. I am SO particular about how the trails get marked!

A little example of my Ride Manager thinking:

With regards to trail marking:

  1. Use easily identified ribbon that can be differentiated from a different trail’s ribbon. (i.e. stripes, solids, checks, etc.)
  2. On common trail going the same direction, ribbons must be next to one another, or within close proximity…like within a foot of one another.
  3. On common trail that goes opposite directions, ribbons must be hung across from one another or as close to that as possible. (More easily done at Mt Adams in the woods, than at Grizzly Mtn…in the desert. Gah)
  4. Yellow CAUTION ribbon marks a turn.
  5. On common trail, the CAUTION ribbon should be with the ribbon that is turning, so as not to confuse riders as to which color is turning.
  6. Signs! Signs are not overrated. Pie plates are great, but a stake driven into the ground with a laminated legible sign (i.e. waterproof!) and an arrow is worth a big bunch.

With regards to participant comfort and happiness:

  1. Feed your riders!
  2. Feed your riders on Friday night, prior to the ride meeting, so they all come!
  3. Do not feed your riders potluck. There are too many people who ditch potlucks because they don’t trust the food. Understandable.
  4. Feed your volunteers! Feed them a lot, keep them happy so they want to come back!
  5. Have porta potties, or equivalent (sanitary equivalent!).
  6. Have a central fire, if allowed. Great gathering point.
  7. Have a sound system! A new one for me. EDRA has purchased a nice little battery operated sound system for the rides to borrow. Wow…it was cool. I love it. The people in the back could hear the meeting!
  8. Give decent awards. This does not equate to money spent, it equates to, “Wow, this is so cool!”
  9. Have an awesome vendor, like American Trail Gear, there to have those items we all forget! Thank you Diana Seager!
  10. Be open to things changing in an instant and be ready to flex!

That’s just a small sampling of how I drive Max crazy with my expectations of how a ride “should” be managed.

Awards made by Jesse Craig in Redmond, OR.


Woody, Celena, and Chris did an amazing job of feeding the people. The salads were fresh and delicious, the beer was a bonus, and the beef, well, it was stupendous. (Max and I brought out some “Chuck” for your dining pleasure). Thank you! We are so happy to be able to support local business!

Landmark Catering did an awesome job!

Woody and Celena, who own the Sandwich Factory and Landmark Catering in Prineville, did an outstanding job of feeding the riders on Friday evening! Hamburgers, veggie burgers, brats, and all the fixins! Oh, and beer too!

Before I go any further, I want to extend a heartfelt thank you to every single rider, crew member, friend, foe, family member, acquaintance, etc, who decided to take a leap of faith and jump out of their comfort zone this past weekend. The Equine Distance Riding Association (EDRA) is very much an infant organization, but as has been stated before, it was founded by some folks with decades of experience in distance riding horses. It also has a few new comers to our sport that decided to have faith and take the membership leap as well. There are some kinks to work out in the EDRA fabric, and there were some very special moments at the Grizzly Mtn Ride. I saw members of the TYM relay discussing some things, I saw the veterinarians and ride secretary working hard to get used to a different, but similar competition format. I had other PNER/AERC ride managers out volunteering, and even helping pull ribbon! I saw people coming together for a common greater good! I saw people who had been very vocal about their opposition to a new organization put their personal feelings aside, and come to the ride anyhow, and like it! One of the major perks of having our ride be EDRA sanctioned, is that all EDRA rides have a Steward. Someone who makes sure the rules are followed. The steward also goes into immediate conflict resolution if there is a problem. This will prove to be an invaluable addition to any ride, I predict. I appreciate every single person who came out and supported Max and I’s decision to “go EDRA” this year. We don’t regret it one bit! We hope you don’t either.


Riders raising a toast to a new beginning!

I saw our PNER community come together quickly when one of our own, Chuck Cowan, suffered a life threatening health crisis early Friday morning, necessitating a trip to St Charles in Bend in a helicopter. Fellow riders helped get the rig packed back up, gave Theresa hugs and moral support, and sent her dad off with prayers for a recovery from a very dire situation.  That’s the sort of thing that continues to make me proud to be a PNER member. Hugs and much good mojo your way, Chuck. Hopefully you’ll be on a horse again soon. Not too soon…but soon enough. Theresa, you’re a great daughter, showing a grace under pressure that is commendable. You did right by your dad and your ponies. I know he must appreciate it very much.

At the ride meeting, the two 75 mile riders agreed to start with the 50’s, which meant we all got to sleep in a bit! The start was very chilly! There was a heavy frost on the ground that resembled a light snow fall!

I even heard tell of a frozen banana. The sun was out though, and moods were jubilant! People were happy to be emerging from a long and tedious winter. Some riders even drove a really long ways to be here. About as far as Max and I drove to ride the Nevada Derby! Why you ask? Because she wanted to be a part of the very first EDRA event.  That made us very happy! It warmed up nicely though and turned out to be a banner day in many respects. I even went short sleeved for a bit.


Ridecamp landowner, and Out Check Queen, Sara Miller!


The first place awards, donated by Sabiq Arabian Ranch!


Our ride secretary, Anna Sampson, is inarguabley (is that a word? I decree that it is, if it isn’t already) the best Ride Secretary, EVER, was having technical difficulties with her printer. She is so kind to us that she took the time to go all old school and write out the results for me so I had them at the ride meeting. Thank you Anna!

Trail results

These are the riders who rode the trail ride. Thanks for coming out!

50 mile results

We had 24 start the 55 miler and 18 finished. Congratulations to Dick Root and his mare, Ali, for earning the Best Condition Award!

25 mile results - 2

25 mile results

There were 36 signed up for the 30 miler with 30 completing. Stace Moss and his Medicine Hat horse, Topper, earned the Best Condition Award!

Two riders on the 75, Dennis Summers and Sanoma Blakely. Dennis and his horse Jagger won and took home the Best Condition Award.


Dennis Summers and Jagger, overall and BC winner in the 80.

New to the Distance Riding format, the EDRA Test Your Mettle Relay made its debut! Four teams signed up this year. I’m sorry, I sent my sheet with Guy Cheek so he could get the awards that weren’t picked up to the right people.

TYM Relay Results:

1st Place: Team A: Sue Summers & Jennifer Kaplan

Tie for 2nd Place: Team D: Jo Weinstein & Tom Dean

Tie for 2nd Place: Team C: Sandy Cheek & Sue McLain

DNC:  Team B: Kathleen Ferguson & Kendal Ingraham

*Sorry, I don’t have the combined times, but Sandy Cheek should. I sent the paper with her and her hubby.

**I didn’t post pics of everyone in the relay because I have categorically stolen most all of the pictures posted! (PS, send me a few!)


These folks all bent over backwards, went above and beyond to help us get this ride off the ground.

Roger and Sara Miller, Carol Giles, Ron Sproat, Elayne Barclay, Leonard Bottleman, Les & Holly Rouska, Kristen Maholland-Grace, Darcy Bean-Hollander, Charleen Farrell, Jesse Craig, Celena Pentrack, Woody Stevens, Dennis and Sue Summers, Dr Cassee Terry, Dr Kelley Jones, Dr Susan Dent, Anna Sampson, Mary Nunn, Jo Weinstein, Jessica Wynne, Lois Fox, Suzy Zurcher, and most importantly, Dennis and Linda Tribby for trusting us with “their” ride.

I know I have forgotten more than one of those who worked so hard to make this ride happen. When I remember you, I’ll add you to the list, because I want you to know how much I, we, sincerely appreciate everything you did to make this ride happen. It really and truly does take a village.

I stated at the start of this missive that we quite mistakenly though this ride would be substantially easier to get off the ground than Mt Adams was. Oh boy…maybe we’ll feel that way in about 5 years. That’s about how long it took for us to feel like we had some sort of rhythm going with Mt Adams.

One last time, thank you so much, to all the riders who showed up to…just ride. We appreciate it, and because of your faith in us, we’ll be back. I’ve always believed that,


However, I’ve always felt a little like, oh wow, what if this happens?

If You Build it They Will Come... Just Kidding...

But it never has! Because I think the take home message isn’t to just build it, but build it right. Put a solid foundation under it. That’s when the magic happens.

Build it they come

Oh, and a little of this…


We’ll continue to build because you continue believe in us. That is huge, and it’s worthwhile.

And now, lastly, and sadly, my least favorite award to give out…


Anyone who has attended one of the rides I manage knows that I have some pretty high expectations of not only myself, as a ride manager, but equally of the people who attend any ride. I expect riders and their crews to be polite, sportsmanlike and cordial. I also realize that things sometimes get out hand when there is the pressure of competition combined. That said, I expect riders to show common courtesy and admit their faults and more importantly show some class when they find out they may have made a mistake or perhaps insulted someone they didn’t intend to insult. I’m getting wordy here, so I’ll cut to the chase. I expect riders to behave like adults and give one another common courtesy. Making obscene gestures to another rider who is attempting to keep you on trail is unacceptable! Blowing a turn and allegedly refusing to go back and do the trail correctly is grounds for disqualification. However, this was a perfect opportunity for the EDRA Steward, Lois Fox, to go gather some intel, and decide what to do. The offended party chose not to pursue the matter, even though it probably cost her a few placings. Thank you for being a good sport. You know who you are.

Grizzly Mtn update 4/12/17

Only a few days now!

We’ve had several people let us know they’re coming. We really appreciate it! Thank you!

If you are looking for an entry form and can’t find it on the front page of the Grizzly Mtn Website, look no further:

Ride Entry Form – EDRA-PNER

We also told you there would likely be changes to the criteria sheet I published last night and sure enough! I had the relay information incorrect! See below for a new and improved sheet! Nothing has changed except the information regarding the TYM Relay ride.

4-12 Grizzly Trail Info001

The weather looks like it’s going to try to cooperate. Hopefully it does! This is part of a weather forecast that I pulled off of weatherunderground.com.  We’ll take it!

Grizzly wx report

Please plan to attend the ride meeting at 6:30 p.m. on Friday (listen for the truck horn!). A ton of valuable information will be shared. We expect all riders to be at the ride meeting so the confusion factor on Saturday is kept to a minimum! 


Latest Update on the Grizzly Mtn Ride

We’re less than a week away! We’ve included some important information below.

Diana Seager of American Trail Gear will be at the ride with her trailer of goodies!

Grizzly Mountain Ride Camp Rules


  1. Park/camp in an orderly manner.
  2. Contain your pets safely.
  3. No fires (except in the central area). We’ll have a big fire pit for everyone to enjoy, complete with native Oregon Juniper firewood. Come and meet everyone and hang out at the fire cheering on the late riders.
  4. Gate Etiquette:  There shouldn’t be any cows in the areas where the ride is taking place. Please leave any gate exactly how you found it. The majority, if not all of them should be open.
  5. Vet Line Etiquette: Your horses will be well behaved in line. If your horse is causing a ruckus, please move out of the vet line with the understanding that your horse will not lose its place in line. If your horse kicks/bites/spindles the veterinarian, you may be disqualified immediately.
  6. 75 mile riders who are continuing on will have a courtesy jump to the front of the line for the welfare of their horse. Your understanding is appreciated.
  7. Trail Etiquette: If your horse is a kicker, PLEASE flag your horse appropriately. If you don’t have any ribbon, please find Darlene or Max. They have lots of yellow CAUTION ribbon to share.


Head Veterinarian: Dr. Cassee Terry

Treatment Veterinarian: Dr. Kelley Jones

Ride Veterinarian: Dr. Susan Dent (who is visiting from out of state!)


Pre-ride meeting at about 6:30pm on Friday (or as soon as most are vetted in).


Friday dinner. 5:30pm-6:30pm: Hamburgers/Veggie Burgers/Brats with all the fixins’, sauerkraut, potato chips, potato salad and a nice green salad. Dinner prepared by Landmark Catering (Woody and Celena!).

Dinner is free to the riders and $8/person for non-riders.

There will be a cooler full of drinks near the main area for riders to help themselves from all day Saturday.


Awards Sunday morning. 7:30am. We’ll honk a horn.


 Pack out garbage. Please clean up your campsite and haul out your trash.

Spread your hay & manure. Sara and Roger’s horses will enjoy picking through the leavings!

Many big thanks to Roger and Sara Miller for graciously

sharing their ranch with the Grizzly Mtn Ride!

Please be sure to thank them when you see them.

Now…please understand…I’m including this next graphic for your information only. All of the information on this sheet is entirely subject to change, for any number of reason, from inclement weather to mileage concerns. You may print, but realize that the information may change.  (Thank you for understanding!)

4-11 Grizzly Trail Info001

Much work was accomplished!

We got super busy this past weekend on Grizzly Mtn ride prep! 85% of the trail.is marked, signs are nearly complete, and camp is outlined.

Many thanks to Darcy Hollander, Leonard Bottleman, Elayne Barclay, Carol Giles, Celena Pentrack, & Kristen Grace! They all worked hard to make our job easier!

Only one week to go until the very first EDRA ride! Grizzly Mtn is gonna rock this year!

More updates as they arrive!

Remember to send a note to Anna Sampson with your intention to ride. Let me know if you plan to eat with us!

Thanks to all of you who’ve taken a moment to send a note of support! We really appreciate your kind words!

We need a headcount!

If you are coming to the Grizzly Mtn ride, please let me know! I’d like a rough headcount so we can have enough grits to feed our riders and crews! Remember, you can purchase a meal for your non-riders for $8/head.

Let me know also if you’re a rider, crew member or volunteer!

Send name & how many you’re feeding, with their designation,, please!

Email to endrncrider@gmail.com

Text 360-433-5772

Thank you!


Ride Maps!

I’m going to post these maps & trail configurations, but realize they’re subject to change, according to the trail conditions on ride day. They are VERY un-official at this point! 

Loop Configuration & Ribbon Colors for the 2017 Grizzly Mtn Ride:

Trail Ride:                                                                                       

Warner Loop                      Pink & Black Stripe/White

25 Miles:

Warner Loop                      Pink & Black Stripe/White

Tribby Loop                        Yellow & Black Stripe/White

50 Miles:

Willow Creek Loop          Blue & White Check/White

Tribby Loop                        Yellow & Black Stripe/White

75 Miles:

Willow Creek Loop          Blue & White Check/White

Tribby Loop                        Yellow & Black Stripe/White

Jasper Loop                        Pink/Blue

Tribby Loop                        Yellow & Black Stripe/White

Mettle Relay:

Warner Loop                      Pink & Black Stripe/White

Tribby Loop                        Yellow & Black Stripe/White

Many many thanks to Sue Summers for putting these maps together! Her mileage matched what we had done on foot entirely! You’ll have to ask her about her computer program. It’s amazing.

We’ve learned that there won’t be any cows on the east side of Hwy 26, but there will be cows on the west side. We’re working to get our gates figured out.

Oh, and yes, I know there are two different Warner Loops. Haven’t decided which to use yet. Trail quality/distance is in play here.

Got questions? Just ask! I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.

Darlene Anderson

endrncrider@gmail.com or text: 360-433-5772