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  • Ride and Tie is a sport combining running, riding, endurance and strategy. Teams consist of two runners and one horse who complete a 20-100 mile trail course by "leapfrogging" one another. That is, one person starts on the horse, the other on foot. The horse travels faster than the runner; after a previously arranged time has passed, the person on the horse gets off, ties the horse to a tree and takes off running. The first runner comes up to the horse, unties it and trots or gallops down the trail. When the horsed partner reaches the runner, the person on the horse can either get off and exchange with the other partner (a "flying tie") or can ride on and tie the horse to a tree. Partners do this for the entire distance and each team learns to maximize the different members' strengths and weaknesses to their advantage.

    "Has ye seen my horse?" he gasped.

    "Na, man, I haenae seen nae the horse the day," replied the countryman.

    And Alan spared the time to explain to him that we were travelling "ride and tie"; that our charger had escaped, and it was feared he had gone home to Linton. Not only that, but he expended some breath (of which he had not very much left) to curse his own misfortune and my stupidity which was said to be its cause.

    Robert Louis Stevenson, Catriona (1892), Part I, ch. 13 (action is set in 1751)

    November 19, 2015