So I’m going to mention a few people who have done Treks like I’m planning.
First there is Bernie Harberts author and adventure. He rode across America on a mule. When he started he says he didn’t know much about Mules or equine trekking. But not knowing much he still did it, that takes bravery of a special type. His web site is http://www.riverearth.com.
Then there is Bernice Ende a lady adventure that has almost 14000 miles to her name on horseback thru America and Canada. She travels alone with her two horses. http://www.endeofthetrail.com/blog/
Then there is the Wagon teamster Bob Skelding a man who as traveled across America by horse and wagon. Still does treks around in America when he can. He was hit by a eighteen Wheeler and two of his horses were killed and one was injured. He was hospitalized from the accident. After he got better he bought another wagon and team and continued his journey. When the injured horse was healed he rejoined the team. That takes bravery of a awesome sort. His Website is http://www.wagonteamster.com
I would also like to mention another website that has also shown me that I’m not insane or at least if I am then I’m in a select group of people. This would be the long riders guild. Their website is http://www.thelongridersguild.com
These and people like them are where I’m getting the inspiration and courage to follow my dreams. How can I not follow them with individuals like these leading and showing the way.
My route I plan on starting this Trek in July of 2018. This time frame is adjustable. I’m planning for that date because it will have me doing winter in the warmer states Ky, TN NC, Tn,Ky,Ar,OK,. Basically following the Benge route of the Trail of Tears. I’m hoping to be leaving OK. in February then it will be heading north through Dodge City Ks, Ne, SD, ND, Mt, Id,and Wa following the Cherokee Trail to the Oregon trail and then to Lewis and Clark trail then North to the Pacific Northwest Trail even though I won’t be able to follow the PNT with a wagon I’ll parallel it. I’m hoping to get to Neah Bay Wa by Oct or Nov 2019. Then I will head south down the coast to CA then start heading east thru Nv, Ut, I’m hoping to go though these to states in the spring when it will be cooler and there will be more water. Then Arizona Tx Oklahoma Arkansas Tn. Then home to Science Hill Ky sometime around July 2020. This route is adjustable depending on different factors and to where I’m led.
For the end of this trip. But not I hope the end of the story.
And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left.
We are scheduled to begin our journey on July, 2018
My extensive preparations have been going on for over two years already, including training, fitness, mapping, logistical planning and more. You can see what I’ve been doing to get ready and keep up to date with our progress and adventures right here on this blog.
There were several ideas on how to carry enough water. One was carry 5 gallon jerricans but I kept coming back to the fact that I would have to carry at least 6 and they would take up a lot of room. I had decided that 36 gallons of water would be my goal as horses drink between 10 to 15 gal. a day. Then I thought of barrels but again there was the problem of room, where would I put them. Finally I decided on two 18 gal. RV water tanks. I could put them under the seat of the wagon. The reason I decided on two was that way I could leave one empty when I knew that there would be water ahead plus it would cut down on water surge in the tank. The weight for water is 8 lb per gal so 36 gal is 288 lb. I’m going to leave it up to my friends and family “who are awesome” to build my wagon for me to figure out how to get water in and out.
As we travel slowly across America we plan on stopping and talking to local people and explaining why we are traveling the way we are. We will call ahead to see if the papers of the local communities would be willing to talk to us and do up an article.
> We are also going to try to find a local charity contact and see if they want to set up a event like a local trail ride and or BBQ with us or even have some of the rider’s in the community ride alongside of us for a day or two to raise money for local needs.
> As we ride we are hoping that the national news will start covering us. Raising the awareness to a national level.
> Horses can only travel 15 to 25 miles a day for three to five days before they have to take a rest day. We will try to schedule these rest days in conjunction with interviews and other events.
> There is exciting times ahead and I hope you will join us in Raising Awareness for the Hungry Children of America
Our mission is to raise awareness of how many children and elderly going hungry in America today and how to help. America the land of plenty has 16 million hungry children. So we decided to do something to help by what? So we tried to figure out what we could do to help. We decided that raising awareness of the hopeless hunger in our most at risk Americans would help.
Open your mouth for the mute, for the rights of all who are destitute. Open your mouth, judge righteously, defend the rights of the poor and needy.
Food insecurity is harmful to all people, but it is particularly devastating to children. Proper nutrition is critical to a child’s development. Not having enough of the right kinds of food can have serious implications for a child’s physical and mental health, academic achievement and future economic prosperity.
In the United States today, nearly 16 million children face hunger. Consequently, one in five kids are facing greater obstacles then their peers to reaching their fullest potential. The future of America lies in our children. When hunger threatens the future of a child, it threatens the future of our nation as well.
We will be stopping along the way to talk to people about the at risk people going hungry on American soil. We will be talking about ways to help American children and elderly.
1. What can local people of the community do to help.
A. Every time you go to the store to buy groceries buy a little extra and give it to someone in your neighborhood who needs it.
B. Find out what children are going hungry in your neighborhood. I’ll bet that most of your children know who doesn’t get to eat. Send a extra lunch to school with your child if he or she knows of a child going hungry. That lunch might let know of someone elderly on a fixed income fix up a box of food and drop it off. A jar of peanut butter and a loaf of bread will help. Or a couple cans of soup.
2. Why should you help.
A. The child you help feed today might be the one to save your child’s life tomorrow.
B. The children are your neighbors, what will you be teaching your children if you don’t help.
3. Don’t look the other way and expect someone else to help. Set an example to your family and your neighbors. It doesn’t cost much to help a little and if everyone helps a little maybe Children and Elderly going hungry in America will stop.
I’m pretty sure my family thinks I’m insane. Even so they have smiled as I talked their ears off. Encouraged me to do this trip. Have offered to help when I get closed to them on the trip. And even offered to ride along for a couple of days. And haven’t told to shut up even though their eyes have glazed over. Thank you to Debora, Chris, Tanya, Donnie, Tam, Tom, Jamie, Daniel, Kris. Tom, Geneva, Anthony, Claudele, Annette, Marc, Schatzie. And to all the rest I love you.
All the autobiographies I’ve read all say the same thing in the end. When you start out and you and your horses are fresh the urge to push and make miles will be there. But all agree that in the beginning try not to make that mistake.
Do no more then 8 to 10 miles for the first few weeks then move them up a little each week till you are doing anywhere from 15 to 20 miles a day. Don’t be pushy if you find a good place to camp at 10 miles take it. They also said that the urge to push hard will take you at the half way point because at that point you and your horses are fit and seem able to go on for ever. But again don’t push. Same as near the end if the Trek, at that point you start thinking that you’ve made it and you want to get to the end. That is when your horses are the most vulnerable because they are tired and are easily pushed to hard.
The idea behind my Trek isn’t the destinations end. The destination is the dream and the experiences on the way. The hard part will be remembering that God had sent me this mission. Sometimes it’s hard to remember the Mission instead of the Dream.
It will be impossible to mentally prepare for the Childhood Hunger Awareness Trek as I’ve never done one. I’ve been talking about how physically hard thus trip will be. It will be hard as neither me nor my horses are in great shape. At the start of this trek I’ll have been driving a tractor trailer for six years. So I’m overweight and out of shape. My boys have been grazing in a pasture only getting rode once in a while again out of shape and over weight. The weeks I have planned to do training isn’t enough to change that greatly. So when I start the only thing that will get me out of bed is mental toughness. This Trek is going to be one of the hardest things I’ve done in my life. Harder even then basic training in the army because I was physically in shape for that. Every thing I’ve read about trips like this is that it takes an enormous amount of mental energy. It’s really easy to say I quit and go home because the only thing keeping you out there is yourself. No one is paying you, there really is no reason beyond your dreams to do this. And the worry and stress of making sure your horses are fed increases the energy drain. So mental toughness is important. I believe I can do this and I’m excited about it. But does anyone really know till they are tested to the breaking point and beyond.
Horse feed is another unavoidable weight. 1100 lb Horses usually eat around 20 lbs of food a day. So depending on how much grazing I find for them I’ll need anywhere from 10 to 20 lbs per horse per day. My plan is at max amount to be carrying 200 lbs of feed. However that won’t be every day just when I restock. At this point I’m studying on what would be the best feed to carry. Alfalfa and oat cubes or alfalfa and timothy cube or split it between both. I’ve also have been trying to decide if I should maybe just do a complete feed instead. I have also been researching Source Micronutrients as a feed balancer. Bernice Ends the Lady Long Rider uses them with her Horses. After much searching and reading I’ve decide on what to carry the feed in. I think I will use shipping totes they are sturdy and can be stacked empty or loaded. And if I get the large size one will hold fifty lb.
Activity Level Daily Calories
Maintenance Approximately 15,000 calories
Moderate work Approximately 25,000 calories
Heavy work Approximately 33,000 calories
Feed Calories Per Pound
Green Pasture 245
Orchard Grass Hay 872
Alfalfa Hay 977
Timothy Hay 804
Alfalfa Pellets 970
Premium Oats. 1,250
Beet Pulp. 1,059
1cup Oil. 1950
1 cup molasses 950