Tuesday, May 4, 2010

these are the days...

After all the previous fretting, then there are days like yesterday. It was 87 degrees when I started the ride, hottest day of the year so far. I had considered doing my usual loop, but thought i'd rather just ride in the forest, in the shade. Major was so good! On the way to the first lookout we walked, trotted, even a little canter nicely. He thought we were turning for home, and thought he could go faster, but after a reminder he settled in. I refound an old trail, it has amazing views, some fun places to canter up hills, and some major issues! Now I remember why we abandoned using this trail; it is full of ruts and overhanging trees and more leg-eating gullies. It was good to see Major work out footing issues, he did think we were going the wrong way and kept wanting to turn back. I convinced him otherwise and when we popped up on the big trail you could almost see the recognition.

Once we were on familiar trail we did have one running off issue. On what we call the "trotting trail" we were doing just that when he picked up a canter. He wouldn't slow down, I couldn't circle, we cantered for about 50 feet before I could get him to stop. We immediately went back into a slow trot where he had to listen. The rest of the trip home was uneventful. We walked on a loose rein through the meadows, quail flying up, Major snatching bites of grass, blue skies. Through the creek (he wouldn't drink) and towards home (where he drank at the guest horse trough). He was sweaty, I was tired, but I washed him off and turned him out in the arena (cleaner to roll!). He cantered off, bucking, twisty head, happy. After five tough miles he still has plenty to burn.

And the saddle seems to be fitting...strange how one day it makes him sore, and not another. we'll just use it for awhile and see.

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