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Barbara Kingscote was 20 years old in 1949 when she set out from Mascouche, Quebec to ride her horse, Zazy to Zazy’s owners in British Columbia. She had no idea how far it was, but 16 months later, after numerous detours, to make money, to afford to fix her ill-fitting tack, Barbara and Zazy made it to the Pacific.

April 2008 – I, Kimber Sider, will be 25 years old, when I set out from New Glasgow, Nova Scotia to ride from the Atlantic to the Pacific with my horse/partner Katrina (Kat). Almost six decades after Barb reached her goal, her and Zazy’s spirit are my inspiration along with Barb’s book Ride the Riding Wind: One Woman’s Journey Across Canada (published in 2006 by Newest Press), to discover the heart of my country today through the journey of a lifetime.

On her journey, Barb found what she refers to as the “generous heart of my country”. Barb and her horse Zazy were invited into homes and hearts at every leg of their journey across field, forest, prairie, rocky shield and mountain, all the way to the ocean.

Kat and I will be crossing more than 6,000km over 5-6 months. Our journey will take us through the wet, cold spring of the Atlantic Provinces, black fly season in the Canadian Shield, the heat of summer in the prairies and the threat of winter in the mountains. But more importantly our path will be taking us through the heart of Canada from coast to coast and provide us with an intimate introduction to Canada’s vast landscape and diverse peoples. Our route will take us from New Glasgow, Nova Scotia, through New Brunswick, past Quebec City, Montreal, Ottawa, Thunder Bay, Kenora, Winnipeg, Regina, Moose Jaw, Lethbridge, Abbotsford and finally finishing at the Pacific near Vancouver, British Columbia.

We are going it “alone” on our expedition, as this ride is about delving ass-over-teakettle into Canada. It is about the faces we meet along the way, the hearths we are invited to share and the nature of the lives that are Canada’s foundation throughout the contours its geography. With Kat, as my sole constant companion, we will share experiences that never could happen with a crew or third person, and I believe it will endear us more personally to those we meet than any other form a journey such as this could take.

Well-Behaved Women Rarely Make History is two Canadian women, two generations apart, going against convention with a unique, yet shared sense of adventure, a simple equine mode of transportation and, most importantly, a desire to discover the Canada of their day.

 
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