Great Meadow International Part 2: Cross Country Day and Blogger Meetup!

Alternate titles I considered:

Great Meadow International Part 2... 

...Falling in Love with Welcome Shadow
...Amateur Photography at its Finest
...I Regret Everything
...So Much Salt

I could go on. Subtitles are the best. If I write an autobiography it'll have a subtitle of epic proportions.

Emma and Austen picked me up from my hotel in the morning so we could all take one car, since I had already bought a car pass. We definitely should've brought some adult bevs with us but this just leaves improvement for next time!

The amount of volunteers they had running this show was phenomenal. They had people riding around in golf carts driving from the parking lot into the main area so you didn't have to walk. The cross country course was all around us so we just stomped over to the first jump and got right into it.

I started blogging because I wanted to write more, but I've gotta say meeting other bloggers and having other nerdy horse people to do stuff with is pretty damn top.

I'm starting to notice a trend with fancy pants events; at some point they have a display of hunt horses and hounds. Great Meadow doesn't breed their own hounds like Badminton does but they still had a couple field masters blowing a horn and galloping across the field. I won't lie eventually I'm going to bag eventing and foxhunt full time. I went once and loved it and I also like the idea of being allowed to have a flask of scotch with me when I ride.

I digress. It wasn't too long after we arrived that the first horse got on course. I loved the course design. The jumps were all beautiful and it flowed really well. The problems on course were spread out, although the biggest issue people had were at the huge brush corners in the arena. I had seen them the day before in stadium and while we didn't get a chance to walk any of the lines it seemed to invite itself to be run out on.

If you want video media, check out Emma and Austen's posts, especially because Austen is way more dedicated about getting all the riders right.

I got fancy. Have a slideshow.

Other thoughts again in no particular order:
  • omg guys, Welcome Shadow. When I was eight I had an imaginary horse (you know, like you do) named Diamond. She was one quarter Thoroughbred, Morgan, Quarter Horse and Shagya Arab. I don't want to know what that abomination would actually look like but in my head she looked like Welcome Shadow. So much obsessed. I seriously doubt Welcome Shadow has any Morgan in her. 
  • The rocks at the water jump are not as comfortable as they look to sit on.
  • If the live stream went out ever it was because I tripped on the cords literally every single chance I had.
  • You could see so much of the course from one spot. We walked around a lot and you could see between four and six jumps from certain viewpoints. That made it so much more fun to spectate, because you could watch one rider zoom around the back field over six jumps.
  • We ran into a woman who works for Boyd. She chimed in because I was talking about how Otis Barbotiere never came back after the Olympics so this might be the ONLY time to get to see these riders on these horses. Apparently he is retired, fat and happy. She also told us all about Blackfoot Mystery.
  • Blackfoot Mystery is even cooler in person than he is from my internet stalking. He's a BIG dude and just seems like a total bro. Really cool horse.
  • Jessica Phoenix and A Little Romance had a sticky ride through the coffin but she was really sweet and encouraging to her and I thought it was really cute.
  • I was so sad when I heard Elisa Wallace had a spill at the stupid beaver. She was sitting in good standing going into cross country, their strongest phase, and she really worked out stadium the night before. Unfortunate.
  • Ditto Kim Severson and Fernhill Fearless, who pulled up before we saw them.
  • Lots of frangible activity in the back field, which ended up being influential. They had a couple holds on course to fix an airy oxer made of logs.
Anyway, so that was my day. I hit no traffic coming home and rode Runkle which fulfilled my "omg I just watched people gallop around the coolest track ever and I haven't run XC in 2 years".



  1. I love blogger meetups and Emma and Austen are tops! Glad you were able to meet and hangout with them :)

    1. yeah it was awesome! really nice blogging perk

  2. I love all these blogger meet ups and I really need to move to a more horse centric area, so I can join in on the fun.

    1. hah i like how you're like i need to move to a more horse centric area not for the horses but for the social aspect

      maybe more valid :P

  3. Love the slideshow haha!!! So much fun let's definitely do it again. Needs more salt and booze tho lol

    1. salt and booze... sounds like we need margaritas :P

  4. So fun! I love the horse and hounds. I really need to move back to the east coast so I can go to watch more fancy events.

    1. yeah foxhunting demos are always my fav. looks so fun and free!


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