Monday, August 13, 2018

Wolcott Mill Metropark Ride

On Saturday Alicia and I made plans to go trail riding. We didn't have much of a goal in mind other than get the horses in shape for the endurance rides we were planning on doing this fall. Plans were equally compounded by Gwyn still not having a shoe on one of her front feet plus the velcro stickers were loose on her feet so I had just pulled it off so the Megasus were out of the question. My farrier is coming Monday and I didn't feel like wasting a velcro thinger for a day. My goal was to go to a place where the footing wouldn't negatively effect Gwyn.

Highlights from my helmet cam

Wolcott Mill seemed good. While it would be fairly boring as it's just farm field edge riding with some woods it's also pretty well groomed as it's one of the few places that's good for people to come and use their carriages. It's nice and wide and mowed. The last time I was there was in 2015. I was hoping it wouldn't be as muddy as last time since we've been lacking some regular rain lately.
Wide, groomed trails

Right away, the horse flies decided to be horrendous. They were the giant ones, big black, the size of a fingernail and not your pinky unless you have humongo hands. They drove Gwyn absolutely mad. They really liked landing on her butt, right in the little dip on her spine where she couldn't reach with her tail. She figured out that if she bucked it would flip her tail up and over to swish at them but honestly I just tried to smack them as much as possible. The fuckers would dodge as soon as they saw my hand.

So this ride was characterized by a TON of bucking and kicking on Gwyn's part, while she was being perfectly behaved. Several times she broke into a trot just to try to escape them. So noted, Gwyn. We will not do Wolcott again in the summer. We'll wait for fall when the bugs are dead. The deer flies were equally bad but not as maddening. Fly spray did nothing.

 The parking is on the north side of 29 mile road but all of the trails are on the south side. So rather than cross a sometimes busy mile road, we go under it!
I was pointing out a deer, this is the view immediately on the other side of the road

Random ridiculous giant rock ditch that we bypassed

Baby deer bounding toward us! Watch the video for a better view

Hello storm clouds
 We started hearing thunder at this point in the ride and shrugged it off. The storm seemed fairly distant.

Alicia and the Storm

You can see the B52 bomber fly

It was right around this time that we saw lightning and suddenly getting back to the trailers was urgent.

Back under 29 Mile Rd

Alicia's reins got stuck when she tried to use them to get rid of a deer fly on his ear. It didn't work, lol

River view

In the woods heading back to parking

Endomondo Stats

Side by side map comparison from 2015 and Saturday. We covered some new ground. This gives me hope for going back for some good conditioning mileage.


  1. what a pretty place to ride! those damn horse flies tho, ugh. they're vicious!!!

    1. It is very pretty, but it was a big shock the first time I went as I expected something completely different, lol. I see the value in the trails now but it took a while, haha.

      And yeah, those horse flies were nasty. Never on me, just on poor Gwyn.

  2. Those trails look like amazing galloping lanes! When the flies are bad here I use it as an excuse to do speed work and try to out run them. Doesn’t always work but it sure is fun.

    1. They are! I just didn't feel comfortable with Gwyn not having even feet. The farrier came out last night so if I went back I'd totally do a ton of canter and galloping work!