Monday, September 25, 2017

Adventuring

I've been bad about keeping this blog updated, especially on Annie, but rest assured things are chugging along quite nicely and I've been chipping away at putting more miles on the mare. Aside from a very short back-yard schooling, we've kind of exited stage left re: the whole schooling thing and instead, have put the focus on something else entirely. Trail riding!

Hacking out onto the road.
My motivation to school in the arena has dwindled, and with the lack of light past 8pm, I've found myself without enough hours in the day (especially on work days) to get an appropriate school in. So, we toodle.

She's had more days off in the last three weeks than she has had since riding season really geared up, but neither of us are seeming to really mind. Monsoon season has reared it's ugly head and on days where we don't ride, I do some light grooming or in-hand work just for kicks. And some days, I just feed her her mash and am on my way.

With all the trail riding and toodling, I'm really proud of her though. After our silly road-hack on September 11th (wherein she jolted forwards after I had mounted and asked her to walk on), I came out the next day and she was as agreeable as pie. I rode her in the front patch of grass by the barn and although she was super excited about cantering and "shouldn't we just canter whenever you put your leg on?" she seemed to settle pretty quickly when I ignored it and just kept asking her to trot. The ride was short, followed by some impromptu "jumping" of a 2x4 I laid on some buckets.

The small amount of green-space I have to ride in at the barn.
I swear. One day I blog about anxiety and fear, and the next day I am trying to jump my mare over a 2x4. Spoiler alert: she didn't even jump it. She trotted gingerly over it and no amount of convincing could get her to lift her feet. Oh well, I don't necessarily blame her for that one!

Once I had finished establishing a leg yield during the trot (without hopping into canter), I patted her and toodled down the driveway to cool out. Since I had the dogs with me and Ty isn't able to walk as far as he used to (another blog topic for another day perhaps), we just went around the block and about half-way around I dismounted and walked the remainder of the way home. Sitting in an office chair during the day and then climbing in the saddle sometimes is a bit of a pain in the.... well, you know. I took liberty in walking astride my mare and worked on some in hand stuff.

Sometimes I feel like these short 20min rides are useless, but I kind of shake my head and remind myself that any time in the saddle is better than none!

I also lunged her last week primarily for the purpose of
desensitization. Mare couldn't care less - she was more
happy to lay out some rather pathetic bucks when I
asked her to canter tho.

A few other things happened over the last two weeks - photographer friend came and snapped some pics of me and the ponies, a neighbor came and helped move a manure pile and re-level the one part of the paddock, fixing fences, going to pick up a new roundbale, farrier appointments (which Annie was REALLY good for), and working on the whole saddle fitting thing.

Add in the whole school and work thing and it becomes pretty busy. Plus, we are in the process of Winterizing our house and property, so that's taken a bit of preparation.

Spud supervised while the girls grazed in the front.

She was VERY good for the farrier, considering this
was her second time being hot shod.

So, we toodle.

Heading home from a 7.5k ride with N and AJ. I
tried to convince her to gallop down one of the dirt roads and
she obliged for a good 20 seconds and then her engine died lol.
Our tracker said she hit about 25km/h, which is really terrible haha.

Our version of "barn door vista" for Emma.
She has been much better about tying alone now, which
is good to see!

Another toodle with AJ and N - stopping for a snack break
during a 9k ride.

Toodling on her own - she was very snorty, but was a brave
baby. This was just a short 3k ride since I had the dogs with me.

Still not understanding this whole eating grass thing.

Are you ready? Let's go!



She held onto this gob of grass for a good 5k.

Good rides are made better with good friends!
 I'm sure we will get back into the groove of a regularly scheduled schooling plan (or maybe we won't), but I am enjoying my time just meandering around the wilderness and paved streets with my mare. We've both worked really hard this year and it has been such a breath of fresh air to have a horse I can just wander around on. Sure, each trail ride had a moment or two in it that wasn't great, but it's been pretty fun just gossiping and enjoying the horses beneath us.

7 comments:

  1. Sounds like lots of pleasant time well spent with the pony!!

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  2. I think all rides are valuable even if they're short or not specific to a goal. Just having fun has it's own value.

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  3. my riding instructor from years ago used to say 10-20 minutes of just riding and doing something with your horse is better than not doing anything. And looks like getting her out is the most important thing. There is plenty of time for 'schooling' but a baby needs to have fun!(She is a baby right? I didnt get that wrong? LOL) also love the lunging photo and the grass photos (HA remus holds onto it too!! for a snack later). Looks like you are using the time change to your advantage. The daylight is def leaving us fast ;(

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    Replies
    1. She sounds very wise!

      And yes, she was just started under saddle late December of 2016.

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  4. Glad you guys are having a good time!~

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