Journey America Part 2

Heat and Rocks

My plan was to rest one day in Choele Choel before I continued south, but Picasso changed those plans. He has the horrible habit of pawing at the ground when I grab feed for them. As I walk towards the boys with alfalfa in hand, he stands right up to the fence and paws away. As he was doing that, his right foot went into the fence line, and when he tried to pull it out, the back of his shoe got caught and he yanked it clean off.
It was already late in the afternoon so it was impossible to find a farrier. I awoke early the next day and began calling my contacts. After lunch I finally located a farrier and he nailed the shoe back on for me.
The next morning I woke up at 4 am, tacked the boys in the pitch dark and rode out of choele choel. With the heat in the 40’s, I needed to ride as much as possible before noon. With the pack saddle I once again rode south alone.
The road became plagued with large rocks and stones. Making every step the horses took a painful endeavour. After only a few days, Sapo especially, began to limp once in awhile. Making me loose sleep with worry and cringe with the noise of their shoes hitting the rocks during the day.
Because my ponies come from the Buenos Aires Province, they are not used to walking over rocks. Their hooves are not strong enough to take this stress all day and all week. It was a big problem.
When we arrived in Chichinales, I knew the boys needed to rest their feet and bodies. The night we rode into town, an amazing family hosted me with a grandiose BBQ. I met cousins and uncles and friends as we chowed down on a delicious pork and a lamb. They took photos with me and asked to hear stories from the road. With one too many Fernets, I slept like a baby.
I was worried about my horse’s health, “how will I continue south,” i thought to myself… but amongst my new friends I felt safe and sure I would find a way to continue.