Rachel Sather has participated in several equine events over the years. And when she saw Extreme Horse Skijoring at Canterbury Park last year, she thought: “Why not?”
Sather will be one of the participants at the Feb. 23 event, which involves a skier being towed by rope behind a horse. Competitors can reach speeds of up to 40 mph as they navigate obstacles, soar over jumps and collect rings.
In the Novice division, she will draw on her experience in grand entry, cow sorting and barrel racing for Extreme Horse Skijoring.
Extreme Horse Skijoring
• 1-4 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 23
• Canterbury Park
• $10 for adults; free for kids 12 and younger
• Free parking
Getting Ready for Skijoring
When she first thought about participating in skijoring, the Excelsior resident “watched every video possible” to get a sense of what the sport — which was first reported in the mountains of Central Asia thousands of years ago– is all about.
And while she and her partner, boyfriend August Blasing, get ready for Extreme Horse Skijoring, so too do her horses. Sather said having her horses exposed to different things makes them better at events overall, noting the improvement she saw among them from one year to the next in rodeo-style events.
Sather said she tried to have one of her horses pull a weighted sled as practice.
“He wasn’t really a huge fan of it, so we’re kind of working on that,” she said. “You never know what you’ll get. Horses have a mind of their own, so we’ll see.”
What They Expect at Skijoring
Blasing, who will be skiing at the event, said he hadn’t heard of skijoring until Sather suggested they try it.
“It’s one of those things that you would never even imagine doing,” Blasing said. “It’s something you didn’t even know was a thing. When else are you going to be able to do that?”
While neither has competed in Extreme Horse Skijoring before, Blasing said they “might have a few strategies in place.”
Meanwhile, Sather said they’re both excited about the event.
“We’re just going to go for it,” she said.