|Sunrise from our camp.|
As usual, it was a mix of good fun and brutally hard work. We left Fort Huachuca at 1 PM on Friday and drove the two hours to Picacho Peak to set up our camp. The next day we participated in three battles at 11 AM, 1:30 PM, and 3 PM. We had to keep a close eye on the horses as they get dehydrated an often suffer elevated heart rates. I would check them after each battle to see if they were OK. If they had excessively high respiration rates, I would swap them out for a fresh horse. We got through the battles OK and then had a big steak dinner prepared by our Chinese cook, Hop Sing (he is really a Japanese-American, but likes to be called after the Bonanza character). After dinner we relaxed around the campfire and relived our battle exploits of the day and had our "naming" ceremony, where each trooper gets their B Troop nickname. The names selected this year were, Pistol Pete, Turbo Foot, Kick Stand, Mighty Mouse, and Elmer Fudd. Each name comes with a story, of course.
|The mess tent.|
On Sunday, we did it all over again, but had to strike camp after the last battle and make the drive back to Fort Huachuca. We got back at about 7 PM. We unloaded and fed the horses, stored the weapons, and then left the rest of the stuff to be unloaded later. My wife left us pulled pork sandwiches and coleslaw so we didn't have to drive home starving (and so she wouldn't have to make food for me when I got home). As always, everyone enjoyed the weekend and are looking forward to next year.
|Waiting for breakfast and trying to shake off the morning chill at the fire pit.|