Ride-about in Patagonia – Episode II

6 February 2018

Morgane and Noé are going through a period of great doubts because of harsh weather conditions, but finally they get over it thanks to their mutual support and also thanks to some pretty amazing encounters on the road. So we wanted to know more about them…

“Patagonians show an unusual kindness”

Horses are their world and we were lucky to get great help from them, since they know what it is to travel by horse. They are honoured that we chose their beautiful country for our ride-about. If we had to tell you about only one of the most amazing human experience we would definitely choose to talk about our great encounter with Ariel… It was at the end of our first riding week. We hadn’t seen a soul for 7 days, we had plodded on through wind and snow storms, we couldn’t make a fire because it was too windy so we were not eating much, we were dirty as we couldn’t face washing in ice cold rivers…..We arrived by chance in a little hamlet of ruined houses littered with waste all around. Ariel, a 27 years old Gaucho came out with his 12 dogs and offered us his house to rest. We felt so happy to finally see a smiling human face! There was no electricity nor running water, but being able to wash with hot water heated over the wooden stove and the hot tortas fritas felt like a five star meal. We stayed 2 days in his house and our farewells were extremely touching, as he often spends several weeks without seeing anybody.

“Generally, we try to live in the moment. In fact, times when our morale is low are thankfully short and always in daytime, so that evening is when we recover our smile, thanks to encounters, the spectacular landscapes or simply a nice grazing field for our horses….We are soon going to enter Santa Cruz province, not without apprehension however: according to people we have met, weather conditions are terrible there. We have already gone through one awful day, with winds averaging 120 km/hour, it was extremely hard. Sometimes, we had to lie down on the ground not to fall off, our horses were staggering!!We hope it won’t be like this every day.”

How much time do you have left, and what are your next objectives?

“We are about half way through our trip. We have about 1 and a half to 2 months to reach Calafate. Our objective is to reach this point but we won’t forget to make the most of what we see on the way and take it all in. For instance, we are at the moment in a beautiful Estancia where the Gauchos have offered to show us their jobs: This trip is more than a sports experience, it is important to take the time to discover the wonderful culture of this country. We would also like to take leather braiding lessons and learn how to make the famous Argentinian bridle. And of course, once we have finished, we will want to find a good home for our horses. It is something which is really important for us, as Gauchos are pretty rough with their horses and we would like to find a reliable person who will take good care of them.

Right now, we are being held in Los Antiguos (end of January ndhp) because of repeated injuries to our horses… we got together with Catherine, a Belgian girl who is doing the same trip as us, with two mares, which means that the risk to hurt the horses gets even bigger. Worst of all, bad luck keeps following us… We hope to be able to make it to El Calafate at the end of February, but from now on, there won’t be any internet connection, distances are great and we will ride through deserted areas, the hardest part of our trip is about to start!!”

“Since the beginning of our ride-about, I have been writing about our adventure, because I would like to turn it into a graphic novel (I have already made a few rough strips, only sketches for now- cf infra). It was very important for us to know what we would do after the voyage. I didn’t want to be coming back and feeling frustrated and numbed by Parisian life after such an adventure! As for me (Morgane), as I’ve said before, I am preparing a graphic novel about our trip. Noé, who works in special effects, would like to work abroad: there are great opportunities in this field. As far as riding is concerned, we are looking forward to testing our cangallas chilenas type saddles on our horses in France! Depending on where Equirando 2019 takes place, we would like to be part of it…”

Since mid-January, we have had no news from Morgane and Noé. They are in one of the last places on Earth without internet! However, don’t miss the last part of their adventure “Go to Patagonia”…. As they were telling us, they were waiting for all the horses to be ready to resume the Patagonian tracks. The third and last episode will soon be on horsepilot.com, until then, you can follow them on their different social networks!