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Cavalry Rite of Passage: The Spur Ride
Welcome to the Spur Ride, an event steeped in history, filled with mystery and marked by extraordinary skills and perseverance. A rite of passage for Cavalry Scouts, the Spur Ride is a battery of military-specific and physical fitness tests, performed on little to no sleep, that pushes these Soldiers to their limits. If they successfully execute and endure this gauntlet of challenges, they’ll earn their spurs, the trademark of the modern-day Cav Scout. More important, they will be inducted into the Order of the Spur, an exclusive family in the Army’s Cav community. If they falter—and far from everyone passes—they will still come through it a stronger Cav Scout, with a chance to try again next time.
Spur Rides are typically held every year or couple of years. The exact tests vary unit to unit. But they are all mercilessly demanding for the hopefuls, or Shave Tails—the name comes from the early days of Cavalry units, when inexperienced troopers were assigned a horse with a shaved tail. In August, GX was granted access to a Spur Ride conducted by Wisconsin’s 1st Squadron, 105th Cavalry Regiment. The photos above and the video below offer a snapshot of what these 44 Shave Tails experienced.