Trego, Montana July13th, 2017


Our jaunt to and from Carol Guthrie’s home, about 300 miles was as pleasant as could be, more like a little vacation ride. I have shaved Little Liska’s mane as she needed a VERY good cleaning and the Fjord mane and tail are beyond thick, impossible to get to the skin. She looks like a mule.

I forgot to mention some time ago. I’d been sitting on my front porch at the cabin when a new red pickup truck drove in and out hopped a small spry woman. Turns out it was 76 year old Rosie Rollins with a copy of her book in her hand.

She’d driven from Tennessee with one of her beloved horses destined for retirement in Nebraska. Well she thought, “Might as run up and see if I can find that Lady Long Rider,” and well she did.

In her Author’s note she says, “In search for a motto that fits me, I settled on one by an anonymous writer. “She flung herself upon her horse and rode madly off in all directions.” She began her rides in 1960, and refers to herself as a “short lady long rider,” as most of the hundreds of miles were 200 mile rides. But still she’s packed a great deal of miles in all over the United States. On the back of her self published book she writes, ” Any ride on a horse is an adventure, and most folks can only dream about the places she seen from the back of her horse.” Needless to say, I was honored by her short visit.

I hope to see Rosie again this year as she may chauffeur me and my girls on the upcoming book tour.

Libby, Montana – July 9th, 2017

The Bear Grass is outrageous this year.
The Bear Grass is outrageous this year.

Website update July 2017

When the temperatures reach 100 degrees its far to hot for riding. We must be in the saddle by 5am and done by 11am. After leaving Carol Guthrie’s lovely home feeling encouraged and satisfied with our work on my book, I rode north back to Paradise for a return visit at Paradise Fjord’s – and new friend Nancy Beech, (see story in previous posting) Nancy not only owns Paradise Fjords but is an organic farmer and owns Mountain Spring Farms. She raises garlic, blueberries, cherries and potatoes, I know I am forgetting some of her produce. Here she is resting after a very hot day!

Nancy at the end of a grueling hot day of farming.
Nancy at the end of a grueling hot day of farming.

Riding through Plains became an event when I stopped for supplies and a host of women miraculously appeared from seemly nowhere. ONE OF WHICH was a long rider, well 150miles short of a long rider. She came walking over, long stride, cowboy boots and reached out for a hand shake and said, “I’ve been looking forward to meeting you.”

Debbie York, Associate member of the Long Riders Guild. She's moving to Plains from New York!
Debbie York, Associate member of the Long Riders Guild. She’s moving to Plains from New York!

Sandy Spineler came walking over to the horses pushing her bicycle I am not sure how old she was but she said, “I’m in heaven,” when she gave Spirit a hug. She brought out photos of her as a 16yr old riding a big palomino horse in 1959.


Libby, Montana was dancing on its toes with summer tourist activities when I rode into town and settled down at J. Neils Park. I’d completely eaten all of my food before coming in so I swung down main street for Rosauers Grocery Store. While there 3 women came out with big smiles on their faces from the near by campground, “Are you Bernice Ende?” For 3 years they’d been traveling the United States. They were from Colorado and had been following my rides since 2007, I think they said. They held the horses while I dashed in for food, buying way too much, everything looked good!. THEN standing in the check out line a woman touches my are and said, “Do you remember me?” “YES.” I’d met them a few years earlier on a ride into Libby. She and her husband insisted on paying for my groceries.Here’s the carry out boy, Nate with a surprise on his face. “Have you ever packed a pannier?” I asked him. “AHHH No.” lots of fun.

Nate looking bewildered
Nate looking bewildered

The day before I rode into Libby I got a view of this. The LDS – Latter Day Saints were doing a reenactment. I asked one of the outriders on a mule what was going on and he said, “They were commemorating the 100 year date when they were run out of Missouri.” I would imagine if was for the polygamy practice.

Then, as I rode into Libby I rode past this…A group of workers from Habitat for Humanity, putting a house back together.
And I thought, goodness this is truly America and I feel encouraged and hopeful. But then I read in Libby’s local “Montanian” newspaper that huge budget cuts will be made to our libraries, NO. NO. I say.

I ride with Susan B. Anthony and Sacajawea dollar coins. Seems appropriate.
I ride with Susan B. Anthony and Sacajawea dollar coins. Seems appropriate.

When I rode thru Plains, Mt. (the first time this year) I spoke for a group of 6th graders on a field trip to the Bend Guard Station north of Plains about 30 miles. One of the projects they did was to make beaded necklaces. after they were done a young gal named Issy Crabb placed her newly made necklace around my neck. I added the coins. Sacajawea came from Burton Robson and Susan B. Anthony came from I don’t know where but I do like having the women around my neck.

Heading back north to the cabin, getting ready for the next jaunt east, Helena and back. Will visit FarCountry Press, the publishers handling my book.

Hot but all are well.

Huson, Montana – June 23rd, 2017

New Tent from Burton Robson
New Tent from Burton Robson

Here’s a cute story. Last year when I spoke at the International Fjord Show in Sandpoint, Idaho I walked past a woman and turned and said, “Don’t I know you from somewhere?” Something familiar caught my eye. “No,” she said, “I don’t think so.” Then again later visiting with the folks attending the show I said, “Are you SURE we have never met, you look SO familiar.” And again she replied, “No, don’t think so.”  Well she went home looked up my website, looked at where I had gone to school and well turns out Nancy Beech then Nancy Olsen and I had gone to all 12 years of Elk River Elementary and High School together. There is even a photo in our year books of us on the basketball and volley ball teams together. Good Golly Miss Molly!! And now here I am visiting Nancy in Paradise, Montana!!


How’s that for a cute story?

Rode over Siegel Pass 6300 feet, nice ride on my way to Huson, Montana where I have met up with Carol Guthrie author of  Glacier National Park: The First 100 years and other books on Glacier Park. Carol is putting the finishing touches on my book, “In My Own Skin” to be published by FarCountry Press released this winter.

Nice ride across Siegel Pass
Nice ride across Siegel Pass
Weather was quiet enough to camp on top.
Weather was quiet enough to camp on top.
Carol and I at her lovely home in Huson taking a break from editing.

Horses are fat and content. This is vacation riding, I’d never consider this “long riding.”

Trego, Montana – June 2nd, 2017

Montana Spirit simply cannot keep her hoof off my Benchmark Maps."Lets go to Washington, she says..Ok, Ok"
Montana Spirit simply cannot keep her hoof off my Benchmark Maps.”Lets go to Washington, she says..Ok, Ok”

Little Liska Pearl’s report card

                                    April, 2017                                  June, 2017

Leading…………….. C _________________ B+

Bridling……………. D- ________________ B+

Hoof trimming……A ________________ A+

Shoeing…………….. F _________________ C

Standing still when saddling

                                       D-________________ B+

Catching …………..  C- ________________ B+

(she can sometimes “play” – smiles)

Backing ……………  D-_________________ C+

But Spray bottle…    F _________________ C+

Wearing fly mask… C ________________ A+

Picketing on rope skills.. F _________________ B+

Road skills………………….C+ _______________ B-

Brushing………………….     A ________________ A+

Friendliness ……………..    B ________________ A+

Eagerness ………………….. B ________________ A+

Willingness………………..   A ________________ A+

Beauty……………………….   B+________________ A+

I have taken to calling her Little Liska Pearl, next to Spirit she is little and seems so young and puppy-ish. They have taken on a definitive Big/Little sister relationship. They are a delight to work and live with.

I love watching the transformation from uncertainty to knowing to partnership to contentment. She’s a character, a little live-wire and trots everywhere she goes. She has developed a curiosity and attentiveness I would never have expected from her a couple of months ago.

The first ride out was hard for her, its always hard. But we traveled slow and after a week you could tell, you could just tell she liked it, she liked the travel, the grazing, the newness. She likes to move, she likes change. There is a brightness in her eyes, her ears, she has a lively step. She has filled in and rounded out with muscle….. AND Spirit likes her! I can picket Montana Spirit next to me and Liska Pearl will not leave! They scratch each others backs with vigorous bites and nuzzle  rubbing, accommodating from one side to the other. This afternoon Liska Pearl dashed back and forth with whinnies and bucks because Spirit wandered away from her and ended up on the wrong side of the fence. After our tragic loss of Essie Pearl this past winter I can only smile at the lovely transformation they are making, it’s a joy having them in my life. Leaving soon for Washington.

Burton Robson from Michigan is visiting, Liska thinks he has something for her.

Trego, Montana May 25th, 2017

Should be out be next week. New shoes going on today.

When I am not long riding I am longing to long ride. smiles

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The first saddle Lady Long Rider Bernice Ende used in 2005 will be offered at the upcoming auction June 24th  located 3 miles north of Eureka, Montana. The 40 pd Simco…. Saddle in good condition also comes with the following: an original hand-out card Ms. Ende used on the ride, a DVD “the first 10,000 miles,” photos and story about the ride AND a signed copy of her upcoming book “In My Own Skin,” when the book comes out this fall. Early bids can be submitted on line at……. Photos and contact information:

Workman Auction
 Auction Zip Auctioneer ID # 18263  
Mike Workman
PO BOX 1289
Eureka, MT 59917Phone: 406-889-3822

Trego, Montana – May 23rd, 2017

Getting ready to head back out.

This time we ride west for eastern Washington. The Okanagon Area.  Meeting up with Lynx Vilden for a short 2/300ride with her. The two of us are planning a 1000 mile ride in France next year. WE SHALL SEE. We shall see.

THe girls new spring attire, colorful don't you think? It is my own specialty, bed sheets from the 2nd hand store, keeps the bugs of my beloved and its inexpensive!
The girls new spring attire, colorful don’t you think? It is my own specialty, bed sheets from the 2nd hand store, keeps the bugs of my beloved and its inexpensive! Flymasks by Cashel, these are the best as far as I am concerned!
Sewing new riding pants on my treadle machine.