An early reader was curious about a plot point in my forthcoming romance novel High Country Baby. She wanted to know if there was any personal significance to the character Taylor’s dream of horseback riding on the Continental Divide Trail.
Yes, there is.
As I’ve talked about before, I chose the Montana setting featured in my Brands of Montana series because of a childhood trip there. I loved my time on a real cattle ranch right alongside the Continental Divide, and the amazing landscapes and the people I met there made lasting impressions on me.
I was 12 years old at the time, had a serious passion for horses, and the romance of the cowboy lifestyle was immediately evident to me, even at that young age. I did and learned a lot on that trip, but there was one thing that called to me, that was clearly a quintessential experience for the area, that I didn’t get to do: ride a horse along the Continental Divide Trail.
Not that I didn’t have the opportunity.
My father, my brother, and I saddled up and headed toward the trail with a guide from the ranch. But the horse I was on, known to be a little bit of a troublemaker, reared his head back and bonked me on the nose. I wound up with a nosebleed while he trotted me off into a nearby lake. Thus our adventure was cut short, and the opportunity didn’t arise again.
So, like Taylor in my upcoming High Country Baby novel, I have a dream of horseback riding the CDT. I’m determined to do it some day. But for now, I get to have the incredible experience vicariously through my characters, just like my readers!
Get ready to ride the trail too and pre-order your copy of High Country Baby today!