Plymouth, Vermont – November, 3rd 2014

Upcoming Slideshow Presentations

             November 6th,2014                                                    November 13th, 2014


1-IMG_20141013_150709143_HDR-001           Windsor Library

           Windsor, Vermont

           November 13th, 6:30 pm

           Christine Porter – director

           802 674 – 2556


October 27th, 2014 Cornish Fairgrounds – Cornish, New Hampshire

Cornish Fair Grounds  Lovely communities!!
Cornish Fair Grounds
Lovely communities!!


I rode from Muster Field Farm Museum as clouds squeezed the remaining rain from its overcast blistery sky. Three days of torrential rains left creeks rushing with delight and lake shores spilling over soggy leaf embankments. Wet pavement is bad enough, add rotting wet leaves and it’s just plain dangerous to ride on, and I would not ride on, if not for the horseshoes Roger Robertson sends from the BlackSmith Shop ( But we safely clip clopped down the shiny black pavement with color still clinging to the Oaks and Maple trees over head. From our 3 day stop at historic Muster Field Farm to the Sutton School where children spilled out the doors like pouring rain from the sky. They’d taken a moment to wish us farewell.
History resounds in this part of the country. It leaps at you from Federal Colonial homes and mossy stone walls. It whispers to you from enchanting cupola’s, narrow twisting country roads and weathered grey barns.1-IMG_1002
There is high regard for heritage,how could it not be so? After all, did it not begin here?  The concept of democracy took shape here, the foundation set, the lines drawn. The pot got stirred, the cake got baked, America’s beginning took place here. I think what so surprises me is how much has been preserved. How great the attempt has been to retain the natural beauty of the countryside, to keep small farms intact. Living in a 200 year old home is not uncommon. To me I see a high level of citizenship, a concern for the “welfare of community” and less on the individual. Although people are very tolerant and deverse. But I do see a greater effort to find a “common good for the all” that I have not seen anywhere in my travels. Historical events are pressed between the cracks like ghosts that keenly remind these New Englander’s, again and again, of OUR heritage.




Sutton, NH  How pretty is this?
Sutton, NH
How pretty is this?


Muster Field Farm is like a jewel in the community of Sutton and Sutton is a jewel in New Hampshire both wrapped in layer after layer of precious history.

Robert S. Bristol, the founder of Muster Field Farm, stipulated in his will that a working farm always be in operation and that the museum work to support and preserve the agricultural traditions of rural New Hampshire.

Today’s farm produces vegetables, flowers, hay, eggs, and fire wood. Ice blocks are cut from Kezar Lake in the winter and stored until summer in the farm’s ice house. Over 200 of the museum’s 250 acres are under a conservation easement with the Society for the Protection of NH Forests, and a program of selective cutting and sustainable forest management maintains diverse stands of mixed hardwoods and softwoods.
The large, flat and open fields, where militias mustered during the 18th and 19th centuries, are used to demonstrate farm operations and equipment during Farm Days in August. They also produce a large amount of hay that is used on the farm to winter-over the cows and other animals.
Steve Paquin, the farm manager and seasonal helpers are always hard at work. The farm specializes in vegetable production, with the best fields producing a wide range of vegetables (including Steve’s specialty, sweet melons of all varieties). Extensive flower beds exhibit an ever-changing display of texture and color.

The farm’s produce stand is open daily during the summer from noon to 6 pm, generously supplied with all types of vegetables, herbs and a beautiful array of cut flowers. It sells to both local visitors as well as supplying neighboring restaurants and food markets, and is open on event days for our visitors.

The farm also maintains a small but varied population of farm animals which round out the farming operation. Pigs, cows, and chickens are always to be found on the grounds.
Agriculture is alive and well at Muster Field Farm in North Sutton, as it has been for parts of the last four centuries. We hope you come and see for yourself what a “working farm” really means.
©2011 Muster Field Farm, all rights reserved.
Design by Gina Gerhard | Photographs by  J. Bradley
1-_DSC2727 Bernice Ende  Maine (C) Dusty Perin

Nearly one hundred years ago as my grandmother Francis taught in a one room school house on the wild and windy eastern slopes of Montana’s Rocky Mountains her sister Linda graduated from Harvard. The first woman to graduate from Harvard with a certificate equal to that of a man. Adventurous women to say the least.
When asked the other day, “what has been the most interesting ride you have done?” I replied, “this one.”
We are nearly finished with our first year out on this “husky” 8000 mile journey, hard to believe.


Saint – Gaudens National Historic Site is in Cornish, New Hampshire’s back Yard!!

U.S. National Park Service

Pam Mills whom I met in Sunapee, N.H. gave me a memorable tour through the gardens. It is breathtaking to say the least….Please if you have time check out the website.

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Augustus Saint-Gaudens (1848-1907), created over 150 works of art, from exquisitely carved cameos to heroic-size public monuments. Works such as the “Standing Lincoln” monument and the Shaw Memorial, continue to inspire people today and his design for the 1907 Twenty Dollar Gold Piece, is considered America’s most beautiful coin.
Over 100 works of the sculptor are exhibited in the galleries and on the grounds at Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site.  park.


October 16th, 2014 Belgian Meadow Farm – Lebanon, Maine

I was escorted into Maine by Steve Collins, and his team of Belgian Mares
I was escorted into Maine by Steve Collins, and his team of Belgian Mares

Belgian Meadows offers wagon rides for all occasions, a pumpkin IMG_0898patch, an off beat guest cabin a place for ANY festivity be it weddings or birthday parties, it will accommodate your needs. But what the card/brochure will not tell you is the old world charm and hospitality you will meet at this farm. Owned and operated by Steve Collins for over 20 years Belgian Meadow Farm is very, very busy this time of year. I came thru North Rochester riding north on old hwy 125 when I sensed my position was off I had missed a turn and stopped to ask for help…at Town Line Pizza, umm I thought ” maybe they’ll have a slice of pizza?” I met owners Brenda and Lynn – had a fabulous sub-sandwich instead of the slice of pizza. Well an hour later I meet Steve Collins who just happen to stop in to say hello…. Belgian Meadows was on my route across Maine. IMG_0897And so here I had a much needed place to gather myself for the ride over to the Atlantic and regain my composure coming back as it was very emotional and very hectic in Wells, Maine. I’ll be giving a talk this evening then heading out in the morning. MORE FRIENDS, oh my goodness I do like the people over in this part of our country, the accents and casual flair to them they are as colorful as the leaves falling in the fall breeze.

stone stair case leading to the barn

I have only heard about this the barn was kept very clean, no smells, kept the upstairs warm
I have only heard about this the barn was kept very clean, no smells, kept the upstairs warm

In this part of the country there remain main barns attached to the house.
In this part of the country there remain main barns attached to the house.

Riverhurst Farm – Wells, Maine – October 10th, 2014

October 8th we rode into Wells, Maine a bustling ocean beach town. We made it, the Atlantic Ocean….thrilling.

Essie Pearl first time on ocean sand.
Essie Pearl & Montana Spirit  first time on ocean sand

Neither one of the horses have seen the ocean, its sound, it’s smell. The crashing of waves receding then dashing back at them as their nuzzles sniff with curiosity.How must the bigness of it all that I feel, feel to them? I must admit I was moved to tears at the sight of the ocean, at the sight of my two Fjord Mares who so bravely walked and endured the miles with me stepping into the crashing waves. So many of you ask about their health and care and well you should. They are the true champions of the rides. Essie and Spirit are having a much deserved rest here at Riverhurst Farm. Pete and Elaine have been managing the facility for 17 years. Its lovely, old world, quaint..the barn is 200 years old!!! Once a dairy barn now providing motel space for equine guests the farm has a soft, gentle feel to it, very nice. Parson Beach is a 1/4 mile from the farm.

Here is a bit of history that goes with the old barn. In 1812 the old barn provided a safe haven for soldiers of war. According to the Lewiston Journal illustrated magazine august 1937. The Wells Homestead, now a part of Riverhurst, “Sheltered Soldiers in the War of  1812. It was august 9th, 1813 an exiting day in the history of Kennebunk.  An American privateer, the Alexander of Salem, mounting 18 guns and commanded by Capt. Crowningshield, came up the coast pursued by the British ships.  Before it fell into the hands of the enemy the company were lodged in the Wells home over night , the officers in the house and the seaman in the big barn pictured here. As I said earlier the New Englanders are not short on history, they are submerged in it.

Last night we were lulled to sleep by the sound of the Atlantic Ocean, the reward after so many miles- months of arduous travel.  We have been here for 3 days and leave in the morning.  Our heads will be shaded from the sun each morning as we face the westward sky. The horses welcome the cooler weather, then so do I, we are all northern bred girls. Thank you Elaine and Pete.

Riverhurst Farm
Rt. 9 Kennebunk
Maine, 04043
Peter and Elaine King  

We all – Essie, Spirit and I alike need a rest, it’s good to be here.

Riverhurst Farm
Riverhurst Farm
a 200 year old floor
a 200 year old floor



Wells, Maine was an excellent choice to make my east coast landing. The roads leading into town were not terribly busy and for the most part the New Englanders have been courteous. I know that I am a nuisance to most drivers and I do my best to stay over and off the road surface, but still there you are another distraction for people driving down the road with other thoughts on their minds. It is dangerous without doubt.

Eleanor Vadenais, executive director of Wells Chamber of Commerce helped facilitate my visit to Wells. I have over the years worked with many  Chamber of Commerce and have always been very glad I did. Eleanor helped arrange newspaper interviews, camping spaces and the Rachel Carson Wildlife Refuge visit. I rode in feeling lost and furlong, dirty and tired of it all. The town was busy,  far too many people stopping to ask the usual what – where – why questions, all had me pushing the limits. Ahead I could make out a figure jumping up and down waving arms. “Oh, I thought “wonderful, its Eleanor, someone at least has come out to greet me.” Hope rose within me. But as I drew closer I could see it was not Eleanor it was Cathy Schloeder and her husband Mike…FROM MONTANA good friends from Montana!!!

Oh my goodness how could this be??? I knew they were in Maine, vacationing, but that we actually were able to connect was nothing short of miraculous and on this day of all days when I most needed a hearty, familiar hug from back home. Cathy was so confident she would find me she’d purchased a lobster roll for me. I felt as if they carried with them a car load of encouragement, smiles, love and hugs from dear friends and neighbors still back in the Northwest corner of Montana, greeting me at this important junction of my ride. I so needed it.  I so very much needed those hugs that day.

With the help of Moores Hardware whose home and place of business we so rudely interrupted Thursday afternoon October 8th – The Moores had land a mile north of where all the shouting and laughing began, I had a perfect place to camp. Eleanor worked her magic, got my next night secured at Riverhurst and the Rachel Carson visit arranged. A full moon presented itself as I ate the food Cathy and Mike left me. I no longer felt alone, what a day…..what a day.

MAINE DINER - this place is hopping
MAINE DINER, Wells, Maine – this place is hopping.


Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge

I carry with me on my coast to coast ride.. THE INTERNATIONAL LONG RIDERS GUILD FLAG.
I carry with me on my coast to coast ride..


This part of my ride has been dedicated to women. As readers following my rides you know  this year we in Montana  celebrate the 100th anniversary of women’s right to vote.  Following a number of stops at women’s historical sites earlier this year – Susan B. Anthony, Elisabeth Cady Stanton, Matilda Joslyn Gage – their homes and grave-sites.  Women whose focused, enduring determination gave me as a woman not only the right to vote but the idea of equality.

I thought how fitting to end this years travels  by paying homage to yet another woman, Rachel Carson she also wrote a new chapter into our history. Facing ridicule and formidable opposition as did the other women she persevered and today her legacy lives on. To her as to all those women who significantly altered the course of history by demanding liberty,  equality she was an individual  committed to changing society.

Biographical entry courtesy of Carson biographer © Linda Lear, 1998, author of Rachel Carson: Witness for Nature (1997)

Rachel Carson, writer, scientist, and ecologist, grew up simply in the rural river town of Springdale, Pennsylvania. Her mother bequeathed to her a life-long love of nature and the living world that Rachel expressed first as a writer and later as a student of marine biology. Carson graduated from Pennsylvania College for Women (now Chatham College) in 1929, studied at the Woods Hole Marine Biological Laboratory, and received her MA in zoology from Johns Hopkins University in 1932.
She was hired by the U.S. Bureau of Fisheries to write radio scripts during the Depression and supplemented her income writing feature articles on natural history for the Baltimore Sun. She began a fifteen-year career in the federal service as a scientist and editor in 1936 and rose to become Editor-in-Chief of all publications for the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Here's the crew holding down the fort, keeping Rachael's legacy alive
Here’s the crew holding down the fort, keeping Rachael’s legacy alive

Disturbed by the profligate use of synthetic chemical pesticides after World War II, Carson reluctantly changed her focus in order to warn the public about the long term effects of misusing pesticides. In Silent Spring (1962) she challenged the practices of agricultural scientists and the government, and called for a change in the way humankind viewed the natural world.

Carson was attacked by the chemical industry and some in government as an alarmist, but courageously spoke out to remind us that we are a vulnerable part of the natural world subject to the same damage as the rest of the ecosystem. Testifying before Congress in 1963, Carson called for new policies to protect human health and the environment. Rachel Carson died in 1964 after a long battle against breast cancer. Her witness for the beauty and integrity of life continues to inspire new generations to protect the living world and all its creatures.

Eleanor from the Chamber of Commerce had time to do a quiet walk thur the park at the Carson Wildlife Refuge with me.
Eleanor from the Chamber of Commerce had time to do a quiet walk thru the park at the Carson Wildlife Refuge with me.


I carry with me on the coast to coast Canadian ride...the INTERNATIONAL LONG RIDERS GUILD FLAG
Here We are at Riverhurst Farms the Atlantic Ocean is about 1/4 mile behind us. I carry with me on the coast to coast Canadian ride…INTERNATIONAL LONG RIDERS GUILD FLAG.


Dear Bernice,

Often times those who strive to enrich the lives of others never take the time to realize the tremendous long term positive impact they create.  Your journey will serve as a tiny seed, the true results of which may not be fully know for many years.  Perhaps a child you meet will one day tell her grandchild about the woman on a horse who changed her life via a magical journey?  Thus the Guild’s support mirrors your own actions and acknowledges the purity of your mission. Likewise, the Long Riders flag represents all of us who protect, preserve and promote the ancient art of equestrian travel. Protect its message. Carry it with pride and ride well Long Rider.

September 1st, 2014  Toucy, France

The Turner residence, Plymouth, Vermont – October, 1st 2014


Backdrop of the Turner Home Kelly laughing at my temporary fly mask
Backdrop of the Turner Home Kelly laughing at my temporary fly mask


A thick layer of dew greets us each morning. Fog rises slowly to reveal a display of color that I have a hard time describing. I have never seen the Northeast in its glorious fall attire. Rusty reds, gentle golds, pale pinks billow out like fluff. It’s as if a head of broccoli had been painted by a Picasso. I have joined the stream of “leaf peepers”. In two weeks, Columbus Day weekend will be the height of this brilliant season. I’ll be heading back from the Atlantic coast by then.
The Turner home in Plymouth, Vermont is one of those bubbly, lively revolving door households where you can not help but be devoured by “family.”  Its sisters and husbands and neighbors, brothers and children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews and….food, dogs and talk and everything that reminds us of how fortunate we are. Its been one of those stops.

campsite at the Turners
campsite at the Turners

Kelly Siemans has been my east coast connection – helping to facilitate boxes of supplies, suggestions on routes and this much needed 5 day “get myself together” stop. Her aunt Mina Turner and her husband Dick live here. I’m camped under giant Maple trees with the horses in a portable fence next to me. I met Kelly years ago when she ventured to Montana for work at the Glacier Institute.

The Historical Coolidge Estate in only a mile away. Kelly and I rode over.
The Historical Coolidge Estate in only a mile away. Kelly and I rode over.

The weather has been cool at night but hot all afternoon, intense short lived heat like a shot of hot exhaust from a passing car. Fall just may linger on, but the heat will not last much longer. Horses are in good shape, they’ll be a handful when I head out this week.02-IMG_0828

My last stretch for this year, about 300 miles left – from here to Wells, Maine then back here to Plymouth, then over to Fort Edward, New York where I’ll plant my camp for 5 months. Wait for spring to set me free once again.
I have chosen with the help of Kelly to make Wells, Maine my furthest point eastward. It is the home of Rachel Carson’s National Wildlife Refuge. Like Susan B. Anthony, Stanton and Gage this courageous woman …. Rachel Louise Carson was an American marine biologist and conservationist whose book Silent Spring and other writings are credited with advancing the global environmental movement.

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A look behind…
From Rome, New York the trail took me due east one night I spent at John Furlong’s backyard.  I rode into Northfield late afternoon and met Rhea an artist with a flare for adventure…. and a host of others at the city park. Rhea found a place for us to camp at her friend Ruby’s farm, then I got passed on to another friend of a friend…. Jim Shriner who passed me on to the Clothiers farm in Corinth, New York who passed me on to Dick Manell for an over night south of Hudson Falls. There I met David and Cathy Lamando at the local diner. They invited me to over night near Granville, New York. Cathy runs a therapeutic riding program. From there I made my way across the Vermont state line and stepped into beauty beyond anything I have ever seen, there is nothing like it. Fall in Vermont…goodness who would have thought?

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When I rode thru Fort Edward I met Darlene Lundgren. She was on her lovely front porch talking on the phone as I rode by, I shouted out what a pretty front yard she had so nicely decorated in fall decor. Well, Darlene drove passed me later in the day and stopped (I was taking a break in a nearby park) Well long story short Darlene has kindly offered me and my horses a place to winter!!
I must admit I feel relieved to have a place secured, I’ll be close to town and Darlene has lived in Fort Edwards for many years and knows many people. I am looking forward to a long break. The miles do take its toll and all of us  Essie, Spirit and I do need a winter rest.

Rome, New York – September 13th, 2014

NEW YORK IS NOT SHORT ON HISTORY! Matilda Joslyn Gage Home/Foundation – FAYETTEVILLE, N.Y.

Of the three women whose historical homes I visited this past month, it is Matilda Joslyn Gage that I find the most interesting. She was not only concerned with women’s rights but in humanity, liberty for all. She cared deeply about the injustices inflicted upon the Native American Nations. Her home played a part in the abolition of slavery. She wrote fluently with sharp criticism against religion, politics, social norms. I have posted an excerpt from the foundation page as there is so much to say about this woman and I have so little time to do so. I had the privilege of meeting  Dr. Sally Wagner  Founding Director before leaving. I have watched her You-Tube videos several times and have admired her work for years.IMG_0800The folks at Matilda J. Gage Home – Sarah Flick (left)site director, Dave Kellogg – Board Member and my guide thru the home and Sally Wagner. THANK YOU


About the Foundation

One of the most radical, far-sighted and articulate early feminists, Matilda Joslyn Gage was deliberately written out of history after her death in 1898 by an increasingly conservative suffrage movement.  Equal in importance to Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Gage is all but unknown today.  Efforts are under way to correct that.
The Matilda Joslyn Gage Foundation took root in 2000 when Sally Roesch Wagner, the leading authority on Gage, brought together a nationwide network of diverse people with a common goal: to bring this vitally important suffragist back to her rightful place in history.
The Foundation is dedicated not only to educating current and future generations about the lifelong work of this major woman’s rights thinker, author and activist, but also its power to drive contemporary social change.
While restoring knowledge of Gage’s contributions, which continue to be of great relevance today, the Gage Foundation (soon to be called the Gage Center) is also an educational resource for discussion and dialogue about the human rights issues to which she dedicated her life.

“We know we are right; we know we shall be successful,
we know the day is not far distant, when this government and the world
will acknowledge the exact and permanent political equality of man and woman …”

Matilda Joslyn Gage

Gage stood for:

Gage opposed:

  • Egalitarianism
  • Peace and justice for all
  • Women’s rights / human rights
  • Separation of church and state
  • Religious freedom
  • Treaty rights and Native Sovereignty
  • A woman’s right to her own body
  • Helping slaves to freedom on the Underground Railroad
  • Breaking the law to create justice
  • Suppression of truth
  • Degradation of women
  • Double standards
  • Church abuse of power
  • Religious fundamentalism
  • Forcing citizenship on Native men
  • Trafficking in women
  • Slavery and servitude of condition, denying any group their rights
  • Denying women the right to vote


“When all humanity works for humanity, when the life-business of men and women
becomes one united partnership in all matters which concern each,
when neither sex, race, color, or previous condition
is held as a bar to the exercise of human faculties,
the world will hold in its hands the promise of a millennium
which will work out its own fulfillment.”

– Matilda Joslyn Gage

 As I rode away I could not also help to be grateful for those dedicated individuals who keep these women’s lives on the history books and accessible to us. Without their hard work where would we be?

New York  roads, although busy, I must say people have been courteous and move over or slow down even though I know I must be a nuisance to them. The state roads are not littered, creeks and most Rivers are clear.

I rode the Historic Erie Canal and it may have been the prettiest 36miles I have EVER ridden. Stopped at the Chittenango Landing Canal Boat Museum off the Historic Erie Canal is fascinating a must stop. The whole Erie Canal story was really all new to me. We traveled the “tow path” which led along the deep canal. The mules walked this path with young children at their tails pulling the big boats up and down the canal.

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The horses now wear flannel sheets at night to keep the cool damp air off their backs. Mosquitoes and flies torment us less and less.
I could not be riding these roads without the Black Smith Shop(see sponsorship page) horse shoes that keep us safe on wet pavement. I am just plain loving my ride through New York!!

Fayetteville was one lively stop, thank you all of you that made the visit so interesting and just plain fun. Special thank you to the Hullars for letting us camp on their lovely grounds near the fish ponds.
Joanne Zimmer as if on cue stopped as I rode along a very dangerous busy road south of Fayetteville and asked if I needed a place to spend the night. I did but what I really needed was a haul around a very dangerous “I should not be riding-road” Thank you so much Joanne!!
Elaine MacLachlan put us up in her back yard and gave us a meal and quiet place to rest.
I have been in Rome for two nights at the Erie Canal Historic Village west of town. Stephen Bootroyd is the Curator and gave us a dry place to rest and take care of errands. It poured today, glad to be in. Times up this is all for now. Heading east for Vermont.