Sunday, November 18, 2012

New Trails

On Friday we got an invitation to go ride at some nice trails just north of us.  We had never trailered our horses anywhere, so we were quite excited to see how they would do.

We arrived at the barn early to make sure everything was ready.  We ended up being so early that we killed a lot of time grazing on the strip.

The guys had enough time to work on coreographing their grazing.

When it came time to load I put Bear in first.  He went right up.  I had no idea how to attach him in there, so Cathi came in and showed me all the connectors.  Laredo came next, also with no problem, and then two more went after him.

I knew Bear had been in a trailer quite a few times, but it had been well over two years since his last ride.  And the last few rides for him were one way trips.  He was not inclined to move at all, but he looked a little bit worried in there.

It was only a twenty minute drive, and he was thrilled to come off the trailer.  He stayed a little bit nervous, but each time we did something familiar he came down a notch.  He'd sigh with the pad, lick his lips when the saddle came on, and he lowered his head for the hackamore just like he does at home.  We did a short bit of groundwork and I hopped on.

The parking lot was surrounded by a large grassy area and we were able to walk and trot around for a little while as the rest of the group was still getting ready.  By the time everyone was saddled up, Bear was feeling like his normal self.

It was a relaxing ride.  The trail we were on meanders along a creek for quite a ways, then pops out on a dirt road, and then connects to a bigger section of trails with various loops.  We rode for about two hours, and all the horses were great.  We walked and trotted and Bear was very soft and attentive.  On our last ride in unfamiliar territory he was a little pushy and hard on the hackamore.  I never felt that on this ride.

The biggest event of the ride was a water crossing.  Laredo was a little unsure about it at first, but once he figured it out he crossed like a champ.  Our youngest rider was also not very keen on crossing, but she made it just fine with some help from her mom.  I was the last to go, and Bear was getting a little impatient that he had to wait so long.  I figured in his 17 years he had crossed water at some point, but I knew it was never with me, so I wasn't sure exactly how it would go.

Sure enough he just walked in like we cross water everyday.  It was pretty funny.  The water almost came up to their bellies, and when we got to the other bank, Bear spent some time shaking off.

With how close the trails are and how much fun everyone had, we're hoping we get invited back again sometime. But mostly it just felt great to test our horses and see how they do with completely different situations than we normally put them in.

No comments:

Post a Comment