Our Wildest Rides

Trudging through the jungle, thigh deep in mud, Andrea finds herself questioning her sanity. Callie, on the other hand, shares how she and her friends narrowly avoid a trip to the hospital on a crazy pony joy ride.

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Learn more about horses and riding at HorseClass.com

Read about Andrea’s incredible Costa Rica trek in her book, Crossing Bridges

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  • Callie King 00:01
    We hit this field and we start galloping. And my one friend that was in front, she was always in front of she had this little Appaloosa horse and he was fast as a devil. And she had a pair of boots on him. So it used to come off all the time. Or worse than come off. The horses could step on them. They could still it could catch the back of them. Yeah. And that's what happened here is this horse stepped on the back of his boot. And he went down. Oh, no. And he's in the front of there's five of us racing. He's in the front. He goes down.
  • Andrea Wady 00:42
    Oh, no.
  • Callie King 00:43
    The horse we're directly behind him. leaps, but leaps in a way that his rider comes off. Like what about half down like the horse in front, almost at a somersault?
  • Andrea Wady 00:52
    Scary. Jump in with both feet.
  • Callie King 00:57
    Go Big. Follow your dreams grab life by the reins.
  • Andrea Wady 01:01
    This is how we live. We're Callie King and Andrea Wady two horse trainers always looking for adventure
  • Callie King 01:09
    and finding it. Join us for stories of dangerous travels wild animals, new challenges,
  • Andrea Wady 01:15
    and in the end, always learning
  • Callie King 01:17
    alongside our magnificent horses. So saddle up and follow along. You're listening to grab life by the reins.
  • Andrea Wady 01:36
    What's the craziest thing you've ever done on a horse?
  • Callie King 01:39
    Well, depends on how you define crazy. I've done some really stupid things. I've done some really big risk taking things. I've done some big adventures. I think the craziest thing I remember. So when I was a teenager, I had a group of friends that I rode with, and we were hooligans on horses. Yeah. I mean, we didn't even know what walking was. I love that description. We would just get on and take off at a gallop. We did use our
  • Andrea Wady 02:11
    horses like Harry bicycles when we were kids or Harry motorbikes, I think,
  • Callie King 02:15
    yeah, yeah, there's times that I look back. And I think, oh, man, I've made some really big mistakes. And I need to apologize. And I do apologize. Me too, in relate to those horses, if it was fun, wasn't it. And there were times where I know those horses were having a lot of fun. So a
  • Andrea Wady 02:32
    lot of fun because to be honest, they were they were the ones in control. We weren't
  • Callie King 02:36
    know. So the story that I'm going to tell now, it, it wasn't one that was the best for the horses, it could have been real bad for the horses involved. It could have been real bad for us involved. But you know, in the end, everyone was safe. So I was with a group of five of us riding. We were on horse for each together. And we had trailered our horses to a nearby park.
  • Andrea Wady 03:02
    We might need to describe what a horse for ages. It's a little bit like pony club in England, kind of sort of, but more for agricultural kids. Would that be right? Yeah, it's
  • Callie King 03:13
    more it's like a casual Pony Club.
  • Andrea Wady 03:15
    And then you also like, raise a pig or a cow or something? Right?
  • Callie King 03:20
    Four H is a organization here in the US for youth that there's everything from horses to pigs to sewing. But each club has its focus. Wait
  • Andrea Wady 03:32
    how did we go from pigs to sewing? What sewing as in like, stitching clothes? Yeah. Oh, right.
  • Callie King 03:38
    Okay, yeah, but they're not all together. Like if you want to be in. You're
  • Andrea Wady 03:42
    not sat with the pig making a t shirt or a skirt or something.
  • Callie King 03:46
    You could have your wife. But no, they're separate clubs. We were in a horse club
  • Andrea Wady 03:50
    Okay, so just for everyone. Europe for each is a bit weird. Anyway. As you were we are
  • Callie King 03:56
    in America. Yeah. So, so we had all gone out for a day of trail ride. And basically what our trail rides looked like is we would gallop until the horses need a rest. We would walk for a while until we could gallop again. Yeah. And we came to this one field. And we were riding in a park that just was huge expanse of big fields and long field lanes, the hedges, expansive, big space. We were out here riding all day, then not needing to backtrack at all. Amazing. We hit this field and we start galloping. And my one friend that was in front, she was always in front of she had this little Appaloosa horse and he was fast as a devil. So she was running in front and she had a pair of boots on him like the easy boot style. Oh, wow. back then. And those they've made a lot of advances in those boots. They
  • Andrea Wady 04:56
    used to come off all the time. Not anymore. Or worst thing come off
  • Callie King 05:00
    the horses could step on them. They could still it could catch the back of them. That's
  • Andrea Wady 05:04
    why I use cavalo boots Cavalli boots are amazing. They stay on anyway. Yeah.
  • Callie King 05:10
    And that's what happened here is this horse stepped on the back of his boot. And he went down. Oh, no. And he's in the front of there's five of us racing. He's in the front. He goes down. Oh, no, the horse we're directly behind him. leaps, but leaps in a way that his rider comes off. Like when about half down like the horse in front almost at a somersault that scares the next one falls. But not all the way down, like falls to his knees and beliefs back up the next ride, but that riders off. And then my horse, I was riding a little horse named ace.
  • Andrea Wady 05:51
    I remember ace, yeah,
  • Callie King 05:53
    he was a agile little guy was clever. And he just did a flying leap to the side and basically, kind of half jumped over the horse that had fallen and stayed on his feet. But yeah, we ended up with two horses down two riders down.
  • Andrea Wady 06:09
    But everyone was okay. Right.
  • Callie King 06:11
    We were laughing so hard. The writers on the ground could barely get to their feet. The horses were fine. Again, it
  • Andrea Wady 06:18
    was the horses are up and grazing by then
  • Callie King 06:21
    I think we all had a moment of, oh, God, this is really bad as everyone say, yeah. So
  • Andrea Wady 06:25
    then there's that release of Emily
  • Callie King 06:28
    when we all look back, and okay, everyone's on their feet, horses and riders. Yeah, we just laughed and laughed and laughed. You
  • Andrea Wady 06:35
    know what, though? It's like, I can totally relate to that story. I literally went everywhere on two legs on a horse. And when I explained that, you'll know what I mean. Or one leg where you're going so far, she go round the corner on the horse, and they're literally on one leg. Those ponies loved it. And I can almost feel people can Wow, did they did yeah. Like literally you couldn't stop them. And when I think about riding as an adult, and what the horses are doing it, it's mostly about the Alto at that point, they're training or they're working on their position. And I look at a lot of the horses and I think those poor horses are miserable. Whereas our ponies got to go out in the countryside and travel, just like they're designed to bomb around and have a blast. And every time you got on them, they didn't route to the spot and not want to go they were like get in the saddle kid would go in, you literally had two seconds to get on. You swing your leg over and that horse was gone. And they had fun. And we traveled miles and miles. I mean, I did do that as an adult as well. I traveled across Costa Rica, but you weren't riding on that one. No, I was walking that's even wilder, you did that whole trip
  • Callie King 07:58
    on your own feet. Not
  • Andrea Wady 08:00
    the most sensible thing I've ever done in my life. But you know, going back to the ponies, even with them falling and stuff. And when you know that shocking you think oh my god, they lived so in the moment they hopped back up. And on they go. I think as adults, we overthink things so badly. But yeah, crossing Costa Rica. I mean, that was that was insane. And that was one of those ones where I think if I'd known what I knew, afterwards, would I have done it? Absolutely not.
  • Callie King 08:34
    So where was a moment in that track? And maybe just to give a little bit of background of this track is where you cross Costa Rica. Yeah, with Coast to Coast Coast to Coast with a rescue horse that you had purchased from an auction and done no work with. So the IDEA Part of the challenge of this track was that you were going to do your, your training, and I said that in parentheses, but your relationship building with this worse as you were walking?
  • Andrea Wady 09:02
    Yeah. So it's myself. Elsa Sinclair, my best friend in Costa Rica. Leanna. One of the horses came from the auction one came from the horrendous tourist trails that the horses were doing. And yeah, we just started walking from coast to coast. It was amazing. It was Yeah, but yeah, there were parts where I just thought, what are we doing?
  • Callie King 09:27
    So when was the moment that you remember that? You saw it? I'm in too
  • Andrea Wady 09:31
    deep. The bridge. We crossed a bridge. I remember hearing the guides say there's a bit of a river that we need to get across and I thought you know, Orlando our guide knew exactly what he was doing. He and I trusted him by them. We were you know, like, on no five days in a week in and it turned out we couldn't cross the river because it was weird to get washed away. It was huge. huge river. I mean, Costa Ricans underestimate everything like it's a bit steep means you're scrambling on your hands and knees trying to get up something. And, oh, there's a bit of a river is like, you know, the Colorado River. So we got to this bridge, and I'm terrified of heights. It was a narrow footbridge that went across a giant River. It was a suspension bridge really high up, and we had to go across it with the horses, and it moved. And it was terrifying. absolutely terrifying.
  • Callie King 10:32
    Those bridges move a lot. And also, I've always want to ask this, on those bridges, where you're walking on is typically wooden. And oftentimes, you can see below, you know, it's not like those planks are really tight up against each other.
  • Andrea Wady 10:49
    This form was metal. But it was like metal grid. So you could really see below yeah, there was trying to remember, there was pieces of metal through the middle that was solid, but the edges. So it was a narrow bit in the middle that was solid. And the edges were the mesh that you could see through right down. No, it was terrifying. But we had a lot of trust in each other then with the horses and the team. And the horses were amazing. They were absolutely amazing. And then that bridge led us into the indigenous zone, which is easily the most insane thing I've ever done with a horse. There was mud up to our size. And yeah, I did question I thought this is I think this might be cruel. I'm not sure we should have ever done this. But now we can't go back. And what do we do, but the horses were the ones that lead that conversation, I'll be really honest, because we were so out of our depth. And we were so exhausted. And we had fallen over so many times. But the horses didn't. They did not miss a beat. They didn't have one scratch on them the other side. And I'll be honest, there were times on that through the indigenous sound where I was planning in my head, how I was going to put my horse to sleep if he broke his leg. That's how bad it was. But it was worse behind was it going to get better in front we were we were in it as
  • Callie King 12:20
    an indigenous. So you're almost constantly you're climbing or you're descending. Yeah,
  • Andrea Wady 12:24
    through thick, thick rainforest in torrential rain. And there was roots and trees underneath the mud. It was it was it was absolutely insane and scary. And probably one of the best things I've ever done in my life. And I know exactly what you mean, I can do so much more than I ever thought I could do. And I think the overwhelming thing that I came out of that with, I remember sitting on the top of a hill with Elsa, and we were like laughing hysterically kind of crying hanging on to each other just going we have either completely smashed our relationship with our horses. Or we've just cemented it forever. And it was the second because horses can do so much more than we asked them to do. We have turned horses into our version of what we want them to be. Horses were born to travel horses were born to traverse incredible terrain, okay, they might have done it slower than we did, because they would have been eating their way across. We awoke something in those horses. That was so incredible that they would have walked for the rest of their lives till they took their last breath. And it blew my mind and it changed the way I look at horses forever. But it was equally the most insane thing I've ever done in my life. Wow, that was cool. Would I do it again? No. I'd do it another time. Like in another place? Would I do that again? No, because I do feel that we got incredibly lucky that No. I fail. Like so many times. I remember falling down this waterfall. Like these rocky on this side of this river bed and I fell and landed on my hip. And I just thought oh, that's it. I don't know how I'm gonna get out of here. But like I said the horses didn't miss a beat. They were fine. So
  • Callie King 14:24
    I know many of the stories that you've shared in your book crossing bridges. Oh, yeah. So Andrea, Andrea wrote a book about this track. And there's also a movie available because that added an extra element. You weren't only doing this track you were filming it. So the whole time you're miked. I'm sure you said some things that you said bad stuff. Oh, I hope that's not on. Oh, yeah. On camera. Definitely.
  • Andrea Wady 14:53
    Yeah. I mean, that could have been a whole alternative movie made taming wild Pura Vida, where Is the film which is really Elsa Sinclair story else is a dear friend of mine. And she wanted to film the track. I'd had this idea about crossing Costa Rica. She came with me it was life changing. It was absolutely amazing. But yeah, it was a lot, a lot of fun. But you've had some serious adventures on horses as an adult as well. I mean, you did about the most crazy thing you could ever do quite recently.
  • Callie King 15:27
    Yeah. 2022 I did the Mongol derby.
  • Andrea Wady 15:29
    I mean, the longest horse race in the world. 1000
  • Callie King 15:33
    kilometers. I did 12 170. I got turned around a few times. But mostly it was just the terrain was was so wild. That till you found your way, say around some of the mountains or round some of the bugs or marshes, it added mileage. So
  • Andrea Wady 15:51
    you had to find your own way. There's no one you're not like follow the leader you have because you were out in the lead a lot, weren't you but you had to follow like a GPS or something. Yeah, they gave us a GPS or they've been screwed with waypoints
  • Callie King 16:03
    entered. And every time that you left one, what they call it horse stations, which is where you would get your horse because we switched horses. Yeah,
  • Andrea Wady 16:12
    just, yeah, you're not riding the same horse, 1000 kilometers. Now you're changing, we use
  • Callie King 16:17
    the Mongolian horses, which was part of the experience. So we would they would give us a waypoint when you came out of one horse station. And we had paper maps, but they were from the 50s. So that was a bit of a bit of a wild guess as to if that was still accurate. And then you just take off across the step.
  • Andrea Wady 16:33
    Did you have a moment during that trek, where you just thought, wow, this is the coolest thing I've ever done with a horse? Did you ever have one of those moments?
  • Callie King 16:44
    I think I had that moment at least once an hour. I love it. I love open spaces and that feeling of being you know what I don't think I've ever had so much feeling of euphoria. So many times over eight days. Basically, every time I would get on a new horse, and you just take off and see that incredible landscape. I would just I would literally be grinning ear to ear, I would be laughing hysterically. You know, sometimes we're you laugh so hard, you can barely stay on the horse. I did feel like that a few times, like, Okay, I gotta get myself under control here. Or I might just fall off for laughter. I love it so much fun. And, you
  • Andrea Wady 17:29
    know, something's just occurred to me, as we're talking about these stories and telling the stories from when we were kids to doing it as an adult. I think it's fair to say that you and I do have a special way that we can we can connect with horses, as part of why we're successful in our professional lives is we can create a connection really quickly with a horse and you know why? I think it's because we're up for it. We embrace life, embrace adventure. Don't try and control them too much. And have fun, like that wild laughter of that exhilaration, they feel that and and it feels exciting to them. And they connect to us rather than coming into it with this. I need to control the horse. I'm training the horse. Not that I'm saying there's anything wrong with any of those things. But if you can't come at it with a really light hearted, fun way of doing it, it's always going to be them in us. Yeah. Whereas when we're kids or when we are as childish as an adult like we are. There's a way of connecting those two souls and having fun.
  • Callie King 18:42
    Yes, there was a time I almost lost that working as a professional horse trainer, you know, riding for a living clocking in the hours. Yeah. And it was becoming too much of a job fixing people's horses. Yes. And that's a whole story in and of itself. But when I when I stepped away, yeah, actually then took a break from from riding for a bit. And then the Mongol Derby and the prep for the Mongol Derby and moving to Mexico as part of that prep. Yeah, that led me back to just those. This is why I ride to run around like a crazy person on happy horses. Yes. And to push the limits and to enjoy being in nature. Yes. For me. That's it. That's you've
  • Andrea Wady 19:31
    absolutely summed it up. And actually, it's very topical. Because in the y's riders Club, which is a club that I have older riders, that is the exact message I'm not suggesting my 80 year old kickass people that are still riding go racing across and do the Mongol Derby or cross Costa Rica. But the message is it's meant to be fun. And I think we've lost it somewhere along the line the quest Rhian industry, it's like, the fun is all ours. It's like where's the fun for the horse? And bringing that joy together of doing something adventurous together, whether that be just walking around your own property with your horse, something that brings you both joy. The connection is instant. I love that. Yes. So, so cool. Oh, we have so many more stories about adventure. Yeah.
  • Callie King 20:27
    Well, I can't wait to talk more about the Mongol Derby because I could talk about the Mongol derby. Yes for days. And I know you have so many more stories packed into that that trip across Costa Rica.
  • Andrea Wady 20:40
    I think as we go through this podcast, we will be sharing lots and lots of stories. And I have so many questions about the Derby, but I think we're out of time for today. Yeah.
  • Callie King 20:50
    So for today. Write it like you stole it
  • Andrea Wady 20:54
    ast right. But with a wide open heart and their heart wide open and then you're together. It's the best feeling in the world.
  • Callie King 21:02
    Later today. And guys, we'll see you next time. Bye. Thank you for listening to grab life by the reins. If you want to see ridiculous photos for our adventures be the first to know when we release new episodes and be a part of war shenanigans. Join our email family at grab life by the reins.com.
  • Andrea Wady 21:24
    We'll see you in the next program.