Submitted by Bolender Horse Park

It’s time to hit the trail! The Bolender Horse Park in Silver Creek, Washington is ready to welcome participants back for their 2021 Mountain Trail Schooling Challenge Series. These fun events allow competitors to try out all the levels of the International Mountain Trail Challenge Association (IMTCA) mountain trail for one low fee. Come out to some friendly competition and brush up on your skills after a winter off.

Mountain trail is an exciting sport where you and your horse are scored on precision while navigating obstacles you may find on the real trail, including bridges, water, logs, gates, step ups and more. The course is immaculately groomed and all obstacles are built with safety in mind for both horse and rider.

Spend the whole day having fun on the course while trying out the different levels of competition. Unlike a regional qualifying challenge, at schooling challenges, you can enter all three levels in both in-hand and riding. The three different levels ensure there is something for everyone. For riding, level one is walk only, level two is walk/trot, and level three is walk/trot/cantalope. For in-hand, level one is walking and levels two and three are usually walk/trot. All sizes of equine from mini to draft are welcome and so are all breeds! Show in your English, western or Peruvian saddle! Bitless is also permitted.

Come the day before each schooling show to practice patterns or take a lesson from one of the founders of IMTCA, Mark and Lee Bolender.

The 2021 Mountain Trail School Challenge dates are as follows:

  • March 21
  • April 18
  • May 16
  • June 13
  • July 11
  • August 22
  • October 17

Compete in three of the seven schooling challenges and be eligible for year-end high points. Sign up more than three days before the competition and the office fee is waived! There is RV and LQ trailer parking for those staying the weekend. Bring your minis, ponies, drafts and mules – the whole family can compete regardless of what they ride!

While at the park, don’t forget to meet Checkers, Mark Bolender’s beloved horse who was honored by becoming a Breyer Model in 2020. You can get your picture with Checkers and bring your model for Mark to sign. For more information, visit the Bolender Horse Park website or call 360.269.6156.

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