The winter that never ends seems to be continuing on right through spring here in Indiana.
I've been able to put more consistent rides on Annie and even had a jumping lesson a few weeks ago in which Annie seemed to have not missed a beat but where I looked like an idiot (although I always look like an idiot so maybe I have not missed a beat).
Last Sunday I got a spur of the moment call from a friend who asked me if I wanted to go on a trail ride. As I was sitting in my PJs eating a bowl of CocoWheats and a mug of tea of course I said yes!
We both thought it was a little bit chilly when we tacked up but the parking lot was full of people there with their mountain bikes and children of assorted ages. Turns out it was a brisk 35 degrees. Apparently 35 degrees feels warm enough for taking your horse/child/bike out for a spin, an indication that everyone was used to those -14 degree days.
I thought that Annie did really well, she's a funny horse. She isn't terribly BAH!!! spooky but she's more STATUE! spooky. If she wasn't sure that a rock/tree stump/person was a danger to herself or others she'd freeze like a statue and stare at it. Once she decided it wasn't a threat she moved on. I worked on both letting her figure things out for herself and reinforcing that forward meant FORWARD! by using my stick. She grew more confident and was soon trotting down the trail (occasionally slamming to a stop to STATUE!) and did some "hand galloping" in the lead as well.
A good experience to get her out of the ring and to work on her obedience, her trust, and her bravery. All important things for an eventing arabian.
Here's Annie posing on the trail. Notice the purple biothane bridle. REQUIRED equipment for an arabian on the trails.