Nevada-based horseback long rider goes on a 550-mile trail

Updated: Jun. 13, 2021 at 6:52 PM PDT
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A Nevada-based long rider went on an adventure of a lifetime. Horseback riding on a trail that started in Las Vegas and ended in Carson City.

Samantha Szesciorka traveled a total of 550 miles, in 42 days, all while on the back of her horse Sage and joined by her dog Juniper. Szesciorka began her adventure on May 1 in Las Vegas and she rode across the state and ended her excursion in the Carson Valley on June 12.

“What a way to discover the state then by traveling 3 miles an hour through it and really being in it and living in it on the trail,” said Szesciorka.

This is the third Nevada Discovery Ride that Szesciorka and her horse have been on. In 2016, she traveled 1,100 miles around Nevada, and in 2013, she traveled 500 miles across the state.

“Small rural communities and big cities, state parks, along rivers, ghost towns, old mining camps, and everything in between,” Szesciorka explained. “Every day it was a different experience and I made the route that way intentionally so I can get to see the state.”

Szesciorka’s horses are not just any horses. She adopted them from the Northern Nevada Correctional Center Horse Facility in Carson City, where wild horses are trained and gentled by inmates.

“I loved that I get to have helped get two great horses into a home and have a life of adventure instead of being stuck in a holding facility,” said Szesciorka.

Her other horse, Freemont, was able to join the adventure towards the end of the trail.

“Being on the trail with them is such a partnership, you really have to be a team, you have to really learn to communicate with them, horse to human and human to the horse to get through it together in a way that is safe,” Szesciorka explained.

Szesciorka faced some challenges along the way. At times she got homesick, uncomfortable, and dirty, but she says the peace and quiet made it all worth it.

“I hope that I can inspire other people to get out and see Nevada,” said Szesciorka.

Szesciorka is getting her other horse, Freemont, ready to go on other upcoming long rides, while Sage is one step closer to retiring.

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