In which I post the list of the books about riding long distances

Recently, I compiled a list of books--there are so many new titles!--for Endurance News magazine, the publication of the American Endurance Rides Conference. It's in the April 2018 issue, if you want to hunt for it. If you don't, you've come to the right place.

IMPORTANT: I don't recommend every book on this list!

As I explained in an earlier post, not all books are suitable for all readers, and some books were obviously written by the Bad Idea Fairy.

My personal favorites are marked with an *, but use your CRAAP Criteria (it's really called that) to evaluate what you read.

Most of the links lead to, a few go to private websites. You can also ask your local library to order books for you.

EDITED TO ADD: I will continue to modify this list as more books are published!

Yes, I'm biased:  this is a good one!
If you haven't got your copy yet, the link to purchase is HERE

Books for Beginners and Green Beans
* America's Long Distance Challenge II : New Century, New Trails, and More Miles by Karen Bumgarner. (2013)  Being a successful endurance competitor is more complex that simply running your horse as hard as possible.  Proper care, conditioning and concern for the horse are emphasized.

Go the Distance: The Complete Resource for Endurance Horses by Nancy S. Loving, DVM. (2006)  Topics covered include maintenance nutrition, hoof care and cooling strategies, as well as how to ensure your conditioning strategy is appropriate for the horse.

The Lighter Side of Endurance Riding by Angie McGhee. (2006) A laugh-out-loud must-read for everyone who has ever loved (and been confused by) horses and riding. This book is available directly from the author--find her on FB and she will arrange your purchase.

Go Ride Far  by Mel Newton, DVM (2019)
A conversational guide with recommendations for readers.  Chapters are adapted from Mel's popular blog posts.

The Complete Guide to Endurance Riding and Competition by Donna Snyder-Smith.  (2008) Commonsense approach to conditioning, feeding, tack and equipment, and the mental preparation of the horse and rider all lay the foundation for a long and successful association with endurance riding.

* Endurance 101: a gentle guide to the sport of long-distance riding  by Aarene Storms  (2012)  The step-by-step guide to getting started in the sport, written with an easy narrative style, numerous photographs, illustrations, anecdotes and informative sidebars to guide readers down the trail.

Memoirs and Histories
Tevis, From the Back of My Horse by Sharma Lynn Gaponoff. (2015)  Ride along with Sharma and her horse Tahoe as they tackle the granddaddy event in the sport of modern endurance riding.

The Tevis Cup: The Story of America's Most Challenging Endurance Horse Competition by Marnye Langer. (2005) In addition to history of the race itself, Marnye reviews a panoramic view of the history and geology of the region, as well as the lives of founding riders.
* Tevis Cup Magic: Taking on the world's toughest 100 mile endurance ride by Merri Melde.  (2016) The dramatic story of Merri’s unplanned and unforeseen attempt at the Tevis Cup will put you in the saddle, gripping the reins, racing the clock to cross the finish line in the 24 hour time limit on a beautiful, gallant gray horse.

Endurance: Years Gone By by Lori Oleson. (2016) A collection of stories about great American horses and riders from the 70's, 80's and 90's.
Ride Like Potato: Learn to enjoy trail riding more than ever by Potato Richardson. (2015) Details about Potato’s winning ride at the 2015 Tevis Cup, and many experiences leading up to that ride.

To Finish is to Win by Dodie Sable (2007)  Humorous stories of triumph and non-triumph from the endurance trails.

* Ten Feet Tall, Still: The Very Personal 70-Year Odyssey Of A Woman Who Still Pursues Her Childhood Passion   by Julie Suhr.  (2002) Watching from between the ears of good horses, Julie and her husband Bob left tracks on the Pony Express Trail, the Bitterroot Mountains and along the Mexican border through the redwood forests of California, and many other parts of the world.

Strike a Long Trot: legendary horsewoman Linda Tellington-Jones by Shannon Yewell Weil (2013) Authorized biography of rider and educator LT-J, written by one of her students.

Competition: Further and Faster
Endurance Riding: Conditioning & Competition Log Book by Sandra Adams. (2013)  For the avid trail or endurance rider, this log book is a "one stop" log that accommodates multiple horses, and also allows for the addition of conditioning miles as well as competition miles.

* 4th Gear - Power Up Your Endurance Horse by Dennis Summers. (2012)   Provides cutting edge information to endurance riders to help them and their horses reach their goals.

International, Out-of-Print, and Hard-to-Find (check public libraries and used book stores)
Endurance Horse Riding: A Comprehensive Guide for Beginner to Seasoned Campaigner   by Karen D. David.  (2015) A history of the sport up to the birth of Endurance Great Britain.  
The Endurance Horse: A World Survey from Ancient Civilizations to Modern Competition by Ann Hyland. (1999) This British book gives the newcomer and the seasoned competitor - as well as the interested bystander - an overview of the history and practice of the sport.

* Endurance Riding from Beginning to Winning by Patricia Ingram and Lew Hollander.  (1981, rev. ed. 1989, reprinted 2000) Maximize the performance of horse and rider with proper conditioning, preparation, and race strategies.

Endurance Riding: Tips for Beginners by Cornelia Koller. (2002) Basic knowledge for beginners wanting to know more about the sport in Great Britain.

Endurance: a French Perspective by Leonard Liesens (2012).  Uniquely European aspects of endurance like riding on asphalt and crewing during a race are discussed.  Cartoon illustrations by Steph Teeter.

Endurance Start to Finish by Marcy Pavord. (1996) An experienced and successful competitor guides the novice through all the complexities of British endurance, from start to finish.

* One Horse, One Hundred Miles, One Day: The Story of the Tevis Cup Endurance Ride by Sam Savitt.  (1981) Illustrated with Savitt’s distinctive sketch-style pictures.

Endurance and Competitive Trail Riding by Wentworth Jordan Tellington and Linda Tellington-Jones. (1979) Advice on selecting and caring for a horse, equipment, health problems and injuries, and descriptions of several specific rides.

Endurance Riding: From First Steps to 100 Miles by Clare Wild. (1996) Information for the British newcomer as well as the dedicated competitor. 
Starting Endurance Riding by Clare Wild. (1998) This British “picture guide” has essential information for anyone interested in having a go at endurance riding.

If you have thoughtful and meaningful comments about any endurance books, they are welcome in the box (below)!


  1. Whoa, Sam Savitt wrote about endurance? And Leonard Liesens, hey, we were in touch once: )

    That book by Julie Suhr convinced me I would never, ever do a 100 mile ride. (I know you don't like the word never, but she was soooo convincing.) But her cover photo is the best ever. Epitomizing real endurance, where people (gasp) sometimes get off the horse.

  2. Definitely bookmarking this! Tevis Cup Magic was a favorite of mine and Ten Feet Tall, Still is on my to-read list for this year. Love your suggestions!

  3. To Finish Is to Win: One Woman's Riding Adventures by Dodie Sable is another one I loved :)


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