Journey of love and closure
SHE sought closure and in probably the harshest terrain in the world that's exactly what Kendall Moore accomplished.
Coming to terms with the loss of her beloved Rana Haager hasn't been an easy 12 month journey for Kendall but she says a "weight's been lifted” after tackling a 480km race across Mongolia's Gobi Desert.
"It wasn't until the last day that I felt completely content and proud of what we had achieved.
"In fact, it was only towards the end of day three that I started to realise I could not control my position in the race and it was time to start enjoying the ride,” Kendall said.
She was one of 16 riders to taken on this year's Gobi Desert Cup, and while she didn't win, it proved to be a six-day adventure of a lifetime.
"My reward, apart from the friendships forged and completing the race, was actually the quietening of my mind, the silencing of whirring thoughts that I honestly cannot remember feeling since...well I don't know. What started out as a rash decision made in the depths of my grief and less than a month before our departure to Mongolia, turned into one of the most amazing adventures of our lives. Ever since I lost my friend Rana to a brain aneurysm I have struggled with accepting it.
"Rana herself was a talented horsewoman and also the strongest woman I have ever known so I knew she would appreciate the challenge.
"I have never felt so blissfully happy despite the six consecutive days of gastro, swollen and blistered lips from exposure and no hot showers or creature comforts to speak of.
"The Gobi Desert Cup mantra was spot on; 'You may have what it takes, but it will take everything you have'. Joining her every step of the way across the desert was husband Mick.
"He took his job very seriously and I don't know how I would have done it without him.
"I also couldn't have done it without the unwavering friendship of Bronwen Taylor who somehow managed to man the ranch and the business and the kids as well,” she said.
From the start the ride was always about remembering a friend and raising money for the Brain Foundation. She's managed to raise some money to date but if you want to continue your support for Kendall then email her at mickandkendall @bigpond.com
"I dedicated my ride to Rana and I achieved what I set out to do. I feel a weight has been lifted and I can now close this chapter,” she said.