For our group of CAA travelers, today was a free day. Some people went shopping, some explored the towns of Windsor and Eton, and some went to the showgrounds to watch the opening day of the show (preliminary rounds of some of the events) and the first horse inspection for the FEI driving event. Several horses and ponies were, sadly, deemed unfit to compete at that first “jog.” You can read about it here.

Some trip participants, myself and A.J. included, decided to tour Windsor Castle, along with a whole lot of other tourists.

Here are a few photos of the outside of the sprawling castle, including some windows and gargoyles. No photography is allowed inside. The garden in the first photo is in what used to be the moat around the Round Tower. The final photo shows a window at the beautiful St. George’s Chapel.

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Early this evening, the entire CAA group, plus several invited guests, sat down for a lovely dinner at the Harte & Garter hotel. Because there are so many people on the CAA trip this year, this was probably the only time during the trip that the entire group will be together. To see a few photos from the dinner, visit the CAA’s Facebook page.

The show starts officially tomorrow. Throughout the show, I’ll be posting photos here to try to give you some of the “flavor” of this fabulous horse show and its spectacular setting. To follow news and results of the FEI driving event, stay tuned to www.hoefnet.com. You should be able to find results from the rest of the show at the Royal Windsor Horse Show’s official website.