Saturday, March 07, 2020

Patagonia: Gaucho Derby Race Day 2

Richard Dunwoody photo - Full Story

March 7 2020

Holy moly, what a day that was. Anyone watching the dots would have noticed that the tracking between VS1 & VS2 resembled some madman’s abstract Sharpie art project with riders’ tracks circling around mountains, reversing directions, and laying down tracks over and over and over again. Did we mention this race would be largely about navigation? It’s all fun and games until you are actually lost in the mountains. To be fair, the riders are traversing some pretty gnarly countryside, with trails through passes, river valleys, dense forests, and bogs – yes, bogs – while trying to chivvy along a reluctant packhorse and keep their own horse on an even keel. Not an easy task by any means and that hard and fast first leg may have given some the impression that this race would be easier than they thought. By mid-afternoon, riders were calling 1-800-HelpMeGaucho seeking assistance with reluctant horses and wayward packhorses, but even the gauchos weren’t immune to the seductive charms of the bogs with one gaucho taking an unscheduled bog-bath enroute to VS3. So in other words, Day 2 has been quite a bit slower. The weather has played its part, delivering on its reputation as a fickle beast, turning colder and wetter with possible snow in the higher elevations...

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