Butte Fire & Claim Jumper PC

Claim Jumper Pony Club has won the Flash Team Award at the USPC National Meeting 2016!

Butte Fire vs. Claim Jumper Pony Club

By; Erica Kirchgatter, C-1 member of Claim Jumper Pony Club.


On September 9, 2015 the Butte fire broke out on Butte Mountain Road in Amador County, just outside Jackson, CA. The fire began to close in on Mokelumne Hill and Mountain Ranch CA. For Claim Jumper Pony Club that was bad news. Their club storage unit was located at  Hidden Valley Ranch in Mountain Ranch CA. The owners of Hidden Valley Ranch, Shannon, Dean, Alexandra, and Isabella Linton, were former Pony Club members and had 4 horses on the property along with other animals. The Butte Fire was moving directly towards Hidden Valley Ranch. Noticing the flare up the members of the Claim Jumper Pony Club collaborated a plan to evacuate the unit and help the Linton family any way they could. So, on September 10th  their plan was set in action. Four members came to help, along with their families. Those members were Erica Kirchgatter, Brandon Starks, Griffin Starks, and Taylor Fautt, their family members were Tina Kirchgatter, Tricia Starks, and Janna Fautt. The club even had some extra helpers such as Conner Kirchgatter, Erica Kirchgatter’s brother, Scott Griffiths, a former Pony Club Father with a sister who graduated with her B certification, and Valerie Strait, a grandmother to 3 of our members. Jeff Fautt, Taylor and Morgan Fautt’s  uncle was also there to help. Around 7:30 pm everybody met at the Zippy-Mart gas station, just outside Valley Springs CA, to touch base with each other before going to Mountain Ranch CA. When they arrived at Hidden Valley Ranch they found out that the Butte Fire was moving closer to the area and was only 6 miles away. The members had just enough time to remove 52+ saddles and a few of  the bridles, filling 2 truck beds and a 10 seater van. All of this tack is used for Tack O’Rama; which Claim Jumper Pony Club needed for the up and coming clinic in March of 2016 for the Middle California Region. After the members loaded what they could fit into their vehicles they brought all the tack to Tina and Eric Kirchgatter’s house, where they have an extra unit for all of the tack to go into.

The fast moving Butte Fire continued to move toward Hidden Valley Ranch, causing the Linton family to evacuate around 3:30 am Friday morning. Their fast evacuation caused them to have to open their gates and let their 4 beloved horses loose. Shannon Linton wrote their cell phone number on their palomino gelding’s neck so they could be contacted. Hearing the news about the former pony club family, CHP Officer Tim Fautt, father to two of our pony club members, escorted Chad Strait, uncle to three of our member’s and some of Chad’s friends up to Hidden Valley Ranch to retrieve the Linton’s 4 horses. When they arrived, they found all 4 horses safe and sound. After they quickly loaded the 4 horses with the help of the Griffiths, the Linton’s neighbors, into the trailer, they headed to the Calaveras County Fairgrounds in Angels Camp CA the main animal evacuation center,where they dropped the horses off safely and head back up to evacuate more animals.

On Friday, September 11th, Chad Strait and his friends were accompanied by Janna Fautt. They went back up to Hidden Valley Ranch in Mountain Ranch CA with Tim Fautt as CHP escort to see if anymore animals were left up in that area, they also went to retrieve more of Claim Jumper Pony Club’s tack from the storage unit. Along with a very angry llama, a herd of sheep and their guard dog, and two pigs who were injured, Chad, his friends, and Janna got 20 storage tubs of bridles out of storage unit. They dropped off the animals at the Calaveras Fairgrounds, then brought the bridles to the Kirchgatter’s home. At 2:00 am, Tina Kirchgatter, Eric Kirchgatter, Janna Fautt, Chad Strait, and the other animal rescuers unloaded the 20 storage tubs of bridles into the Kirchgatter’s extra storage unit. Throughout the entire weekend, Chad and the other animal rescuers made it their highest priority to remove any and all animals needed to be evacuated from the fire zones.

            The fire eventually made its way around  Hidden Valley Ranch, only to change directions and

 make its way back towards the beautiful valley. Luckily the Firefighters were in the area when

 the fire change directions and were able to stop it from getting to the Lintons house along with

 all their neighbors and the storage unit, which still had an entire library's worth of books.

 Sadly, the Linton’s lost an outbuilding with family tokens and their neighbor lost her art studio.

 With all the help from so many wonderful people, the Linton Family still have their beloved

horses and home, while Claim Jumper Pony Club still have their equipment and library for

future members and Tack O’ Rama.

Results of Western Championships 2015

Western Champs Results! These are the team results. Individual results can be found at http://www.ponyclub.org/?page=chwresults. Congratulations to all our Mid Cal competitors – you were AWESOME!



Jr Ds

  1. Oregon
  2. Sierra Pacific Team 1
  3. Camino Real
  4. Mid Cal Team 1
  5. Mid Cal Team 3
  6. Mid Cal Team 2
  7. Sierra Pacific Team 2
  8. Midwest/Northwest
  9. Sierra Pacific Team 3
  10. Northwest/Southern California
  11. Camino Real

Sr Ds

  1. Mid Cal Team 2
  2. Mid Cal Team 1
  3. Sierra Pacific
  4. Camino Real/Northwest/Oregon/Southern California


  1. Oregon
  2. Mid Cal
  3. Mid Cal/SNE
  4. Big Sky/Oregon/Northwest



Training Level - Overall

  1. Camino Real
  2. Northwest
  3. Mid Cal Team 1
  4. Mid Cal Team 2
  5. Camino Real/NW/Oregon

Training Level - HM

  1. Northwest
  2. Camino Real
  3. Mid Cal Team 2
  4. Camino Real/NW/Oregon
  5. Mid Cal Team 1

First Level and Up – Overall

  1. Alaska/Mid Cal/Oregon
  2. Sierra Pacific
  3. Camino Real
  4. Northwest

First Level and Up - HM

  1. Sierra Pacific
  2. Alaska/Mid Cal/Oregon
  3. Northwest
  4. Camino Real


Show Jumping

Introductory – Overall

  1. Mid Cal Team 2
  2. Mid Cal Team 1
  3. Camino Real/Oregon/Sierra Pacific

Introductory - HM

  1. Mid Cal Team 2
  2. Camino Real/Oregon/Sierra Pacific
  3. Mid Cal Team 1

Developing Horse and Rider - Overall

  1. Camino Real/Northwest/Sierra Pacific
  2. Camino Real
  3. Mid Cal

Developing Horse and Rider - HM

  1. Camino Real
  2. Mid Cal
  3. Camino Real/Northwest/Sierra Pacific


Overall  Team Results

  1. Big Sky/Camino Real/Midwest/Northwest
  2. Mid Cal Team 2
  3. Mid Cal Team 1
  4. Alaska/Southern California
  5. Northwest



Beginner Novice

  1. So Cal
  2. Oregon/So Cal


  1. Camino Real/So Cal
  2. Sierra Pacific
  3. Mid Cal


Results of Mid Cal Tetrathlon Rally 2015


Santa Cruz County Pony Club hosted Mid Cal's Qualifying Tetrathlon Rally in Santa Cruz on June 25th-27th. Thank you to SCC PC and all the volunteers who made this happen. We had 15 competitors: 1 10&under, 3 Prenovice, 2 Novice, 6 Intermediate, 1 Junior, and 2 Horsemasters. Nine competitors qualified for Western Championships! Go Middle California!


Results of Mid Cal Dressage Rally 2015

Clayton Canyon Pony Club hosted Midcal's 2015 Qualifying  Dressage Rally at the Woodside Horse Park on May 15-17th. Thank you to Clayton Canyon PC and all the volunteers who made this happen!

Horse Management Scores
1st Place - Team 1 Pacific Ridge/In the Irons/Saratoga
2nd Place - Team 2 Portola Valley/Moon Valley/Bay View
3rd Place - Team 3 Santa Cruz/In the Irons/Woodside
Overall Team Scores
1st Place - Team 3 Santa Cruz/In the Irons/Woodside
2nd Place - Team 1 Pacific Ridge/In the Irons/Saratoga
3rd Place - Team 2 Portola Valley/Moon Valley/Bay View
High Scoring Non-Musical Freestyle Score
In the Irons Pony Club with a 70.962%
High Scoring Musical Freestyle Score
Saratoga with a 75.00%



Results of SJ Rally 2015

Woodside Pony Club hosted Midcal's 2015 Qualifying Show Jumping Rally at the Woodside Horse Park on April 11 and 12. Thank you to Woodside PC and all the volunteers who made this happen!

Here are the results:

Horse Management

1   Team 1   Woodside PC 
2   Team 5   Black Ridge PC
3   Team 9   Portola Valley PC/Santa Cruz PC
4   Team 4   Fresno PC
5   Team 8   Portola Valley  PC
6   Team 7  Black Oaks PC
7   Team 6  Pacific Ridge PC
8   Team 2  Woodside PC
9   Team 3  Woodside PC

Overall  Placings

1   Team 9  Portola Valley PC/Santa Cruz PC
2   Team 1  Woodside PC
3   Team 2  Woodside PC
4   Team 8  Portola Valley PC
5   Team 7  Black Oaks PC
6   Team 4  Fresno PC
7   Team 6  Pacific Ridge PC
8   Team 3  Woodside PC
9   Team 5  Black Ridge PC

Page 1 of 2

Pony Club Disciplines

dressage image 80x80  eventing image 80x80  games image 80x80  quiz image 80x80  tetrathlon image 80x80 show jumping image 80x80