You have the weekend planned to a tee: go to the yard, muck out early and saddle up to enjoy a long, peaceful hack and add up some miles.
But when the morning arrives and you peak through curtains, the sky is ominously grey.
By the time you’ve pulled up at the yard the heavens have opened, wind is howling and your horse is giving you the look that says “not today”.
It can be difficult to keep motivated to ride when you’re a leisure rider, but with a #Hack1000Miles goal to aim for, every mile counts — even in the winter.
Here are some of our challengers who prove that wrapping up against the elements and disappearing into the countryside on horseback, is a good challenge…
1 Mud, glorious mud
“You know it’s been a good ride when you come back looking like this!” laughs Cassi Errington.
Who needs a spa treatment when you can be splattered by mud, for free, out hacking?
2 It’s raining, it’s pouring…
“A soggy 11 miles today!” says May Whiston. “It was quite eventful – we had a couple of loose hoof boots going flying into the hedge!”
Spook-proofing a horse at its best!
3 A stiff breeze
Gillian Kedzierski avoided an unexpected dismount.
“It was very windy – one huge gust nearly had me off! But it was lovely to be out.”
4 Time to swim?
“I headed out to test a route and then had a little explore in the woods on the way back.”
Shauna Fowles embraces flood water and all!
5 When the weather can’t make up it’s mind
Sarah Granger and Joanna Holland experienced all the seasons on a recent ride.
“We managed 8.9 miles in very confusing weather – sun, rain and wind,” says Joanna.
The result was a bit of a muddy hack – not that they seemed to mind too much.
6 Somewhere, over the rainbow…
Sometimes it’s worth it to be brave and face the weather.
“It was lovely hack, if not a bit eventful,” says Tracy Clarke. “The ponies were great, even with the tail end of Storm Diana.”
And the reward? A beautiful rainbow!
Could you Hack 1,000 Miles? Find out more about our fun, free, achievable challenge here.