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Re: research - travel

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  • Alastair Millar
    Hmmm... As it happens, the question of horseback travel times has recently been aired over on Britarch, the big mailing list for British
    Message 1 of 6 , Oct 1, 2000
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      Hmmm...
      As it happens, the question of horseback travel times has recently been
      aired over on Britarch, the big mailing list for British
      archaeology/archaeologists. Here are some extracts - note that none of these
      opinions are mine!!!

      _On roads_:

      ""According to Col. Gunter et al with regard to his account of the 'flight
      of Charles II' from Hampshire into Sussex... He was able to travel with the
      King and escort (not military!) at a gentle trot, and including a stop for
      lunch, off the parlimantarian guarded roads, a distance of about 70 mile in
      one instance.""

      "" I have heard old men talk about driving a pony from Norwich to Ipswich
      and back in a day (about 100 miles), admittedly on 20thC roads, and then to
      Cambridge the next day. I have driven my horse 40 miles in a day with no
      trouble.""

      _Cross-Country_:

      ""The Golden Horseshoe ride over Exmoor is the most gruelling endurance ride
      in the world and takes two forms,100 miles over 2 days,or 75 miles, 50 on
      day 1 and 25 on day 2. Most riders are disqualified during the course by vet
      checks. A fit pony could do 30 miles a day for 3 days top whack I'd say. ""

      ""Some years ago I took part in a sponsored "long distance" ride. It was 20
      miles, along forest tracks, and on a fit horse it took me 2 hours.""

      "" it looks like about 30 miles a day is the thing. ""

      HIH

      Alastair
    • Judwiga Czarna Pika
      Hello all!! A horses trot is about 6-8 MPH. A walk, about 4.A gallop, about 12-15. However, there was a pony express rider who did some 120 miles or more on
      Message 2 of 6 , Oct 1, 2000
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        Hello all!!
        A horses trot is about 6-8 MPH. A walk, about 4.A gallop, about 12-15.
        However, there was a pony express rider who did some 120 miles or more on
        one horse, as there were no remounts. I remember seeing in a show about
        Mongols that the Khans messengers Could and Did about 100 miles a day. The
        horses were in GOOD shape. There are regularly Endurance riders who do 100
        miles in a race. Nowadays, though, there are vet stations, and the horse
        has to be cooled down, pulse rate dropped to a certain level, checked for
        dehydration, etc before each team goes on. I doubt the period practice did
        anything like that.Like the pony express, I am sure they rode till the
        horse dropped or a remount was gotten.
        Sorry to be so long winded...LOL Take care all!!
        Judwiga



        > Someone who knows about horses will have to tell us how many miles a horse
        > usually goes per hour. (a rough estimate.)
        >
        > As a former backpacker traveling with a pack over rough ground, we used
        to go
        > from 10 to 14 miles a day. (14 if you're in better shape.) We had to
        calcluate
        > our daily hike to get from one spring to the next on the Appalachian
        trail.)
        >
        > Leya


        Judwiga Czarna Pika
      • Alastair Millar
        Judwiga wrote... ... I wonder... Ignoring draft animals for a moment, a riding horse was a major expense - the archaeological evidence from pre-12th century
        Message 3 of 6 , Oct 2, 2000
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          Judwiga wrote...

          >Nowadays, though, there are vet stations, and the horse
          >has to be cooled down, pulse rate dropped to a certain
          >level, checked for dehydration, etc before each team goes
          >on. I doubt the period practice did anything like that.Like
          >the pony express, I am sure they rode till the horse dropped
          >or a remount was gotten.

          I wonder... Ignoring draft animals for a moment, a riding horse was a major
          expense - the archaeological evidence from pre-12th century Bohemia shows
          that such beasts were confined to the "nobility" (i.e. the various bits,
          straps, buckles etc. appear only within the hillforst/enclosures of the
          ruling elites.) It's rather like a modern sports car - noticeable (i.e.
          flashy), expensive, costs a fortune to feed, and has to be maintained by a
          team of specialists... Of course, warhorses (which one would expect to be
          fitter/stronger) had to be specially trained, adding even more to their
          cost...

          Post routes like that of the Mongols or others were an exception, in that
          horses would have been bred by the central authority for the purpose, and in
          the knowledge that the attrition rate might be high (although unless the
          message was REALLY urgent I suspect that the riders wouldn't have belted
          along at maximum speed anyway...).

          Yrs aye

          Alastair
        • MHoll@aol.com
          In a message dated 10/2/2000 2:48:30 PM Central Daylight Time, ... Good point. Although they didn t have vets in period, I suspect each rider knew a lot more
          Message 4 of 6 , Oct 2, 2000
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            In a message dated 10/2/2000 2:48:30 PM Central Daylight Time,
            alastair@... writes:

            > It's rather like a modern sports car - noticeable (i.e.
            > flashy), expensive, costs a fortune to feed, and has to be maintained by a
            > team of specialists... Of course, warhorses (which one would expect to be
            > fitter/stronger) had to be specially trained, adding even more to their
            > cost...

            Good point. Although they didn't have vets in period, I suspect each rider
            knew a lot more about horses than most of our riders today, even endurance
            riders (average vs. average, of course; and you'd be surprised how little
            some "horse people" know!). When a living horse is a matter of life and death
            (forget the price for now), I'd think they'd be rather careful.

            Predslava.
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