Well, my plan to take a jumping lesson every week in February until trainer left town for Pine Top ended abruptly after one lesson when Stella came up with bruised heels, most likely from running like a ninny on the frozen ground.
I ended up biting the bullet and putting hind shoes on her. As much as I'd rather keep her barefoot totally, or bare behind, or bare behind until competition season, I just can't keep losing weeks at a time from abscesses or bruises. If we had (God forbid) more snow cover, or dryer weather I think she'd be fine. It was still almost a week in shoes before she came sound enough to work, which left us with not enough riding for a jumping lesson, but enough riding for another obstacle fun day.
Fun for WHO??????? Says Stella who was suspicious when I went out to catch her in the field the other day.
A friend of mine who apparently has nothing better to do than think up ways to bother her long suffering steed (according to the steed) brought a ton of her personal course out to a local pony club barn for a bit of a despooking/when is winter going to end clinic. It just so happened to be an awesome day and I rode outside in my T shirt with temps in the 60s!!
Most of these pics are of other people, but rest assured Stella was a star! She was a great demo horse, doing almost all the obstacles without blinking, lead other horses through several, and represented the arabians very well.
Here's the curtain. She did this one great, and she should because it belonged to me! I was a little unsure how this would go as it was blowing around in the wind but that seemed to make it easier since the streamers were up in the air.
You can also see the bridge, which Stella had no problems with.
This was a pole bending exercise, you had to weave behind all the poles which all had helium balloons waving off them. Didn't bother Stella.
This was the only obstacle Stella didn't do. We have really spent no time on platforms and she just doesn't get them. Several of the pony club kids discovered that they had hidden circus ponies as they climbed right up!!
Evidence that Stella was there! Here she is standing next to the tarp obstacle, which she walked over like it wasn't there.
This is a plastic bottle box. Your horse steps inside and all the bottles go CRUNCH!!!!! under their feet. Stella had no problem with this one.
I'm adding this picture of a horse NOPEing hardcore at the curtain because he belongs to a fellow blogger!!! Can anyone guess who the horse belongs to? He's handled here by his part owner, who handled the entire situation with a sense of humor. A good thing to have when you take a baby saddlebred with saddlebred style training into an arena full of scary stuff. He might need some counseling to get over his obstacle course PTSD but he handled it great for his first time.
It was great to meet the horse in person, and maybe some day I will meet the blog owner herself!
Stella noped a bit over this obstacle. She's not real big on pushing through things because she thinks they are solid. This guy here shared her feelings, but both got over it and went through this obstacle both in hand and under saddle.
Overall it was a pretty awesome day! The only thing Stella had an issue with was the crowd, when everyone entered she notched up a bit and started circling me and calling out but as the day wore on she quieted down and became bored with the entire thing. Considering where Stella started the first time we did obstacles, and where she was this day, I'm super happy!