Looking for one of the prettiest endurance rides to attend? Look no further than the Tahoe Rim Ride, held on the eastern shores of Lake Tahoe in Nevada. We once again were a contributing sponsor to this unique ride this year, with awards going to the fastest booted rider, as well as a set of boots that was awarded as part of the Best Condition award.

The small ridecamp (18 parking spots, to be exact) means that it is a very limited-entry ride, and entries are drawn via a lottery drawing for one of those coveted parking spots. If you are selected, you can then bring as many people as can fit in your rig (caveat: you have to bring at least one other person).

Ridecamp; photo courtesy of Tahoe Rim Ride Facebook

I (Renegade customer service rep Ashley) was one of those fortunate enough to be drawn this year…it was one of the most spectacular rides I have been to. Since it’s a bit of a haul (two day drive from AZ), I was offered a friend’s horse (who had already done the ride twice) as well as her rig, so all I had to do was fly into town a couple days ahead of time.

My mount for the weekend, Roo. He toes in slightly, but keeping him barefoot allows for frequent touch-up trimming to keep him moving balanced. He does not have any problems with boots twisting or coming off, and boot cables can be adjusted to accommodate this if needed.

I had originally planned on gluing hind boots, not being sure of what to expect from the terrain, and knowing that Roo has a powerful drive and twist from his hind that has popped boots off in the past. Ultimately, I ended up making an error in sizing (too big…oops!…a good lesson in actually measuring not just assuming you know what size they’ll take…), so I used the time instead to make sure his hooves were nicely balanced, with nice tight quarters that wouldn’t put excess pressure on the sidewalls of the boot and cause them to twist, thoroughly washed his boots, checked all of the boot cables, replaced all of the toe straps, and packed a full set of four strap boots into the trailer (with a spare front and rear on the saddle with me, and a spare front and rear in the vet check crew box).

It was definitely a good ride for boots. While the footing was, for the most part, beautiful, it was also mostly comprised of Sierra Nevada decomposed granite…abrasive stuff. Then there were some sections that involved picking through rocks, and other sections with large slabs of granite that you had no choice but to step on. We had super grip and traction all day long, and his boots didn’t budge once (even on water crossing with an immediate uphill climb).

Stunning scenery: Above Marlette Lake with Lake Tahoe in the background


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50 miles finished! photo by Lucy Chaplin Trumbull

That was my first 50 in over 3 years — and what a ride to pick! Management does an outstanding job with this absolute frills ride (the food spread at the lunch check alone is worth the entry!) and I will definitely be sending my lottery entry in again for next year!

As a customer service rep, I am often asked: 1) If I ride, and 2) If I use the boots. That’s a strong absolutely to both questions (always has been), and a ride weekend like this — a tough 50 without even a whisper of boot issues — just reconfirms what I already knew: they really are The One That Works™.