It was fantastic, the Pony Express, wasn’t it? 400 horses, 120 riders, nearly two hundred stations and several hundred station keepers, water /feed carters and the like, through hostile territory, alkali deserts, and high mountains, to get mail across the continental USA in TEN DAYS! Unheard of!
The mochila, that piece of leather with the big (locked) pockets, slipped over the express pony’s saddle.
It would leave San Francisco and be transferred from the saddle of one horse to another, across two thousand miles of the Old West, through to St. Jo, Missouri! (They went the reverse direction, too, of course!)
But it only lasted eighteen months, I hear you say! Yes, you’re right!
But now, it’s baaaaaccckkkkk…….
And it’s run every year, by a crazy bunch of historical horse nuts. There’s plenty of info here from the National Pony Express Association about the Pony Express, the trails, the stops, you name it, they’ve got it! There are even classroom lessons!
If you want to join them, they’re always mad keen to have more people get involved to keep ‘The Pony’, as they call it, alive!
And I’m riding! Woo hoo!!!!!!
So who’s with me?
I’m riding through ____________, the section of the trail in Utah where Aleksandra, my heroine, has her most ‘exciting’ ride!
(Fill in the answer correctly to go into the draw for a specially autographed copy of A Long Trail Rolling. Click on the Leave a comment button below!)
First, I plan to speak and sign books in Salt Lake City before the event, details forthcoming. If you can make it, keep your eyes on this blog!
If you can’t make it, I’ll be wearing a Go-Pro! Luckily my portion of the trail is during the daylight hours, so you can see it too!
Here are some of the Mustangs I saw and photographed on my last trip over the trail!
Anyone recognise this photo? Hint, I took it… It’s in several places on this website!
Clifton Flat, on the Utah portion of the trail. That little bit of trail you see there is probably the piece of trail that looks most like the original trail back in the day!
This is Patrick, the man who’s helped me so much with A Long Trail, and even written the Foreword. He’s a Past President of the NPEA and he and his family keep the history alive every year. He’s written several books about ‘the pony’ with Dr. Joe Hatch.
I’ll be posting highlights and vlogs from the trail after my ride, so keep your eyes open between the 19th (USA time) and 21st of June! Sorry I can’t live-stream, but I suspect internet and phone reception’s not the best out there!
Best wishes from NZ to you from all of us, we’ll be up in the Northern Hemisphere soon!
Love from NZ, here’s a pic of me and my equine boys… One is no longer with us, but he lives on through his brother…