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NonsensicalRogue
Jun. 3, 2010, 04:35 PM
Fellow trail riders-

Heading out on the trail is supposed to be relaxing, thrilling, and overall positive with as much nature and horse-human bonding as possible right? So do any of you ever take a crop with you? How much repeated, unprovoked (no physical pain, no yappy dogs etc.) negative behavior has to occur before you are willing to consider using it?... If ever?

-NR

sublimequine
Jun. 3, 2010, 04:38 PM
Occasionally I carry a dressage whip, but it's not for my mare, it's for warding off dogs, moving low tree branches, etc. :)

katarine
Jun. 3, 2010, 04:52 PM
Heck yes I carry a crop when I'm riding Maggie. She will phone it in all day long. She's got the rest of her life to star gaze and find shapes in the clouds. While I'm up there, knock it out of the park, please.

What is this bonding nonsense that magically occurs on the trail? cue the music.

oldpony66
Jun. 3, 2010, 04:54 PM
Does a fly whisk count?

Seriously though, we have a horse that USED to balk at going in the lead on narrow trails (yes, it was that specific). Carrying a crop for a while made the difference between a horse win-you lose situation and what we have now - a horse that willingly takes the lead on narrow trails.

kookicat
Jun. 3, 2010, 05:00 PM
I always carry a crop when I'm hacking. Comes in useful for chasing off dogs, opening gates, chasing flies.

sublimequine
Jun. 3, 2010, 05:08 PM
I always carry a crop when I'm hacking. Comes in useful for chasing off dogs, opening gates, chasing flies.

That's great for desensitizing too.. my mare doesn't even blink when I randomly start flailing my whip around in the air like a lunatic if I see a horse fly. :lol:

enjoytheride
Jun. 3, 2010, 05:31 PM
Thought this was going to be about using drawreins on the trail, found out it was about boring whips.

KonaPony
Jun. 3, 2010, 05:37 PM
I always carry my crop on the trail, too. Useful for all kinds of things besides discipline, and I'd rather have it and not need it than need it and not have it. Besides, trail or arena doesn't matter, if the horse tests me/misbehaves and doesn't listen to my leg, then it will get a stronger correction that it WILL listen to. Being out on the trail is no reason to go easy on bad behavior. If the horse knows there will be no funny business, no matter the venue, and acts accordingly, the ride will be more enjoyable for all concerned and I won't have to use the crop, anyway :)

Creaghgal
Jun. 3, 2010, 05:51 PM
Methinks your screen name says it all!

Non.sen.si.cal

1.Meaningless

Having no sense or meaning

2. Laughable

Deserving ridicule

Rogue (noun)

1. Somebody mischievous

A mischievously playful person, especially a naughty child

2. Somebody dishonest

An unscrupulous or dishonest person, especially somebody who is also likable

Guilherme
Jun. 3, 2010, 05:54 PM
I seldom use a crop. I've no objection to them, and use them when necessary (usually with younger horses) but my riding discipline requires the free hand be "free" and that means most correction/communication comes from one hand, the seat, and the leg.

I disagree that riding on a trail means any less discipline or attention to detail than work in the school. If anything it will require more as there are many more hazards in trail riding than arena riding.

G.

starrunner
Jun. 3, 2010, 06:06 PM
I've schooled a lot of horses out on the trail and accordingly so, have carried a crop.

Horses that get extremely buddy sour get the crop after having a chance to work through it. The ones that suddenly become chicken livers and refuse to lead get the crop depending on their issues.

I find it a handy tool and can reinforce my leg which can be weak from time to time due to a knee injury from a horse.

I've especially carried a crop reschooling horses that have taken to biting or kicking on the trail. Tadah, one or two reschooling sessions and the horses are usually good to go for their little kids again.

CosMonster
Jun. 3, 2010, 06:25 PM
I always carry a crop when I'm hacking. Comes in useful for chasing off dogs, opening gates, chasing flies.

Pretty much this. I ride a lot of young horses and feel that I'd rather have a whip and not need it than not have one and need it. Even when I'm riding an old one I'm sure I don't need one on, I usually stick one in my boot just in case I encounter something on a trail where I think I could use one (horseflies or dogs being my main nemeses).

Although I usually carry one I rarely use them. As far as other training aids, I feel spurs may be appropriate if the horse is accustomed to them (for example, on my 4th level dressage horse I usually wore spurs and kept the whip tucked away while hacking) but draw reins or any similar aids designed to force the head down (not speaking of martingales adjusted so that they only come into play when the horse raises its head dangerously high) are dangerous when you're asking a horse to navigate varied terrain.

kookicat
Jun. 3, 2010, 06:28 PM
That's great for desensitizing too.. my mare doesn't even blink when I randomly start flailing my whip around in the air like a lunatic if I see a horse fly. :lol:

True. :D I can nail a wasp at arm's length now. Hubby bought me one of those battery powered fly zappers, but I think that's going a little too far. :lol:

Equibrit
Jun. 3, 2010, 06:42 PM
Fellow trail riders-

Heading out on the trail is supposed to be relaxing, thrilling, and overall positive with as much nature and horse-human bonding as possible right? So do any of you ever take a crop with you? How much repeated, unprovoked (no physical pain, no yappy dogs etc.) negative behavior has to occur before you are willing to consider using it?... If ever?

-NR

I was always taught that you always carry a whip/crop or you are not turned out correctly. Doesn't mean you HAVE to use it, but like spurs it is invaluable if you DO need it.

What exactly makes a whip "artificial" ?

chaltagor
Jun. 3, 2010, 06:45 PM
What is this bonding nonsense that magically occurs on the trail? cue the music.

What, you mean you don't love your horse? My horse knows I love her so she is happy and never needs beating on the trail. Maybe you should let your mare know you love her more and stop riding her so much, she obviously doesn't like it. If you have to hit her to make her go, then Hello Katarine! wake up call.

CosMonster
Jun. 3, 2010, 06:55 PM
I was always taught that you always carry a whip/crop or you are not turned out correctly. Doesn't mean you HAVE to use it, but like spurs it is invaluable if you DO need it.

What exactly makes a whip "artificial" ?

I'm guessing the OP was taught like I was, that anything other than boots on sides and hands on bit and seat on saddle is artificial. That means whips, spurs, whatever. It is a rather arbitrary line though. After all shoving a piece of metal in a horse's mouth is pretty darn artificial. :lol:

Equibrit
Jun. 3, 2010, 07:06 PM
I doubt that a horse finds a person sitting on their back natural.

Ghazzu
Jun. 3, 2010, 08:37 PM
I'm still trying to parse the combination of "relaxing" and "thrilling"...

Grataan
Jun. 3, 2010, 08:45 PM
Lol Katarine and Ghazzu, my thoughts exactly.

Perhaps it is because my normal trail horses are horses I am reschooling for some reason or another, or horses that just have issues, but I almost never head out on the trail without a dressage whip in my back pocket and spurs on my boots. Doesn't mean I USE them, but like the poster above mentioned-they're nice to have if you find yourself in a pickle.

Rhyadawn
Jun. 3, 2010, 10:01 PM
I always carry a crop. In the ring, arena, and trail. If I need it I want to have it. It's mostly used to move branches, swat flies, and occassionally a scratcher for my back for those pesky mosquitoes that seem to never leave me alone...

I'm with the others. Someone cue the music...

Equibrit
Jun. 3, 2010, 10:18 PM
Aids are only important to horses because they communicate the boss's needs, and if the horse obeys as he has been trained, his life is more pleasant. I doubt that he can appreciate the subtleties between "artificial" and "genuine" aids. Any aid is pressure upon his person and all of them can be abused or used sympathetically. To imagine that one is more genuine or artificial than another is just fooling yourself.

katarine
Jun. 3, 2010, 10:21 PM
I'm not even artificially annoyed by the OP, much less naturally annoyed :)

JustTrails
Jun. 3, 2010, 10:49 PM
The Secret Trail Police have never given me a ticket for using AA's on the trail. I've ridden with crops, spurs, tie-downs, running martingale. If the horse needs it, use it. I prefer to train them to not need them after time. Afterall, in my world, the trail is just an arena without fencing.

lcw579
Jun. 3, 2010, 11:13 PM
I carry a crop - I find it much easier than searching fruitlessly for a tree branch to break off. :)

Wear spurs too - hate it when horse gets lazy and dead to the leg and decides it is better to lag behind.

No bonding for me - too much work to do!

NonsensicalRogue
Jun. 3, 2010, 11:19 PM
I daresay there is an overwhelming and singular answer... With a dash of mockery. I stand thoroughly informed!

tkhawk
Jun. 4, 2010, 02:30 AM
Well unless you are riding bareback with no bit, I would think everything else is artificial?:lol:

But having said that, I do not carry a crop or wear spurs. I used to carry a crop, but my girl is very forward and it took me a long time to teach her relax and chill-but the go button is always there .

citydog
Jun. 4, 2010, 04:12 AM
Aids are only important to horses because they communicate the boss's needs, and if the horse obeys as he has been trained, his life is more pleasant. I doubt that he can appreciate the subtleties between "artificial" and "genuine" aids. Any aid is pressure upon his person and all of them can be abused or used sympathetically. To imagine that one is more genuine or artificial than another is just fooling yourself.

If I recall correctly, the "natural" and "artificial" aids were a Pony Club designation. In any case, the terms were used simply to distinguish between the aids inherently available to a rider (seat, legs, hands, voice) and "add-ons" (whip, spurs). It wasn't meant to be judgmental, a la "natural" horsemanship.

Auventera Two
Jun. 4, 2010, 07:12 AM
When Sweets was young I always carried a stiff dressage whip on the trail. I rarely used it but on the occasion that she balked and absolutely refused to cross a bridge or go down into a river, I'd tap her (not hit) on the flank and she'd step right off. It was just another aid that worked very well for her.

I haven't carried it in probably 2 years for her, and my other horses do not need one.

I'd rather have the proper equipment for the job at hand than be 10 miles out on a trail and have to waste time and energy fighting with a beast who is determined to get her own way. So that means if you need a running martingale or spurs or whatever, then use them. There's no reason to believe a horse cannot misbehave or ignore cues on a trail.

Absolutely no need for spurs with my crowd! The Arabs are hot off the leg and ready to GO always. The QH not as much but definitely a go'er. And the Paso isn't going trail yet.

As for flies, I snap off a nice tree branch that's overhanging the trail and needing trimmed anyway, for a fly whisk. Works much better than a crop.

To really enjoy trail riding and use it as a relaxing experience, you have to leave the horse be and not do the micromanaging that arena work requires. Give the horse a bit of rein, sit quiet, and just enjoy the view. Let the horse pick their own footing and just leave them be to work.

Bogie
Jun. 4, 2010, 07:29 AM
Fellow trail riders-

Heading out on the trail is supposed to be relaxing, thrilling, and overall positive with as much nature and horse-human bonding as possible right?

-NR

Actually, I find that being out on the trails is a great place to ask my horse to work, too. I always do a little leg yielding/shoulder in, we do lots of transitions and it's been a great place to teach trot lengthenings.

Yes, sometimes we hack on a long rein but out on the trails or in the meadows you can put your horse to "work" without the constraints of the arena, especially with horses that seem to lose their impulsion when going around in circles.

tabula rashah
Jun. 4, 2010, 08:24 AM
Most of the time, yes, I carry a crop or a dressage whip- only a couple of horses that I actually use it on- but it's most valued use- getting rid of those ()&(&#$(*#&$ spider webs that get strung across the trails every night and then get covered with a healthy amount of dew so they stick to you like gorilla glue- YUCK!!!!

Guilherme
Jun. 4, 2010, 08:57 AM
If I recall correctly, the "natural" and "artificial" aids were a Pony Club designation. In any case, the terms were used simply to distinguish between the aids inherently available to a rider (seat, legs, hands, voice) and "add-ons" (whip, spurs). It wasn't meant to be judgmental, a la "natural" horsemanship.

I think the distinction long predates the Pony Club. I've found references in military horsemanship writings from the 19th Century and before.

The roots of classical equitation lie largely in the training of soldiers for mounted combat. A soldier can't use a crop as a matter of routine as his "free" hand must be free to use the lance, sword, pistol, etc. So routine use of the crop would have been discouraged. It would certainly have had a place in the training of a horse and rider. But it would have been a "step" on the road, not a continuously used item.

This would also have been true of any discipline that required the rider to be doing a job with this free hand, as in the case of a mounted stockman (lance, rope, etc).

One place where you might have seen crops as a matter of routine would be been mounted officers. But here the crop was more a "badge of authority" than an aid in handling the horse. This could be the root of the "proper turnout" rule. Much of our equestrian tradition comes from Great Britain and the British Army had/has some very unusual (and even bizarre) practices.

We use the crop in training, but don't use one as a matter of routine.

G.

PRS
Jun. 4, 2010, 09:02 AM
While I don't carry a crop I have a long length of rolled leather hung on my saddle (barrel racers call it an "over & under") with which I discourage refusals. If for some reason my gelding decides that he is going to drown crossing the little puddle in the middle of trail I can "encourage" him to go forward just by touching him with it. Sometimes I only need to pick it up and he realizes that arguing about it is futile. I can't imagine going through unfamilar terrain without it. My horse is rather opinionated and he often tries to convince me that he should be allowed to "drive", he is also a bit of a weenie and finds all kinds of normal trail sights just too scary to walk past...tree stumps, logs, boulders, a clump of weeds or spot of dirt that is a different color from surrounding clumps of weeds or dirt......the list is endless.

tkhawk
Jun. 4, 2010, 09:02 AM
If I recall correctly, the "natural" and "artificial" aids were a Pony Club designation. In any case, the terms were used simply to distinguish between the aids inherently available to a rider (seat, legs, hands, voice) and "add-ons" (whip, spurs). It wasn't meant to be judgmental, a la "natural" horsemanship.

Hmm , I would think you can do any aid in an "artificial " way. For example, when my mare decides she really wants to go and I don't, she used to start jigging like crazy. But I don't fight, just sit and actually start bouncing a bit-a few seconds and she is back to normal and actually almost stopped jigging nowadays.

Just because I am using my body, doesn't mean it is nice and I would never do that on a green horse or a horse I didn't know-good recipe to be bucked off!:lol: But my girl knows it is wrong and instead of fighting with her, just let her know that if she is going to jar my teeth, well I am going to make it uncomfortable for her too.:winkgrin:

But that is probably more "force" than a tap by a crop or a touch by a spur. I guess it is mostly how you use the aid.

Right on Target
Jun. 4, 2010, 09:29 AM
I carry a crop if I think I need it, and I'd use spurs if I needed them. A horse needs to obey its rider, especially on trail.

My current horse doesn't need anything extra so I don't carry anything extra. If we're disagreeing, I tend to raise my voice, squeeze, cluck, or poke him in the neck with a finger. These things will usually get me the results I need. Love those sensitive TB's. If I find that I really need a stick and I didn't bring one, there are plenty of them all around me on trail. I prefer thin, springy brances with the leaves still on them.

A little off topic, but funny thing I saw about bonding and whatnot. We were trail riding one day and came across a lady leading two horses on foot. She said she only gets on when the horse "tells her" it wanted to be ridden. That cracked me up! I wonder how he "tells her" he wants to be ridden? Looks at her beseechingly? Lays down for her to mount? Talks to her? And then I wonder how he lets her know he doesn't want her up there anymore?

Her horses had awful ground manners btw- head swinging into her, not listenting, rude, etc.

wendy
Jun. 4, 2010, 09:57 AM
Heading out on the trail is supposed to be relaxing, thrilling, and overall positive with as much nature and horse-human bonding as possible right?

is it? we use the trails to get good hard workouts, to do "real" dressage, to jump over "real" obstacles- certainly not for "relaxing".
Of COURSE we carry crops, how else are you supposed to whack the tree limbs aside as you gallop down an overgrown trail, or beat off a blackbird trying to peck your eyes out for going to close to his nest (yet another reason to wear a helmet, too)

SonnysMom
Jun. 4, 2010, 10:26 AM
I carry a crop with my horse since he gets a little enthusiastic in his play in the water crossings. I don't mind that but the slight indications that he might lay down and roll in the water I am a little concerned about. I am taking NO changes with my expensive leather saddle and a rocky, creek bed.

I also would rather carry a crop and not need it than to not have one a need it. I can never find a good stick when I need one. I also find crops make good back scratchers and are good for flicking flies off horsey rumps.

Leather
Jun. 4, 2010, 10:33 AM
Is it less artificial and more natural if I use a tree branch instead of a crop with which to beat my horse? :lol:

99.9% of the time I don't need it, but I'm glad I have it when I do.

brightskyfarm
Jun. 4, 2010, 12:17 PM
Afterall, in my world, the trail is just an arena without fencing.

My world too --- I rode a horse a YEAR in draw reins, His previous jump rider had some heavy hands and it took that amount of time !!! no sense doing ring work; so we worked it out on the trails.........
then. without them, he worked as a pony horse, lesson horse, trail horse, and started retraining as a field hunter.
..........and became one~ even rides without a martingale.

Time and Miles.

CosMonster
Jun. 4, 2010, 12:20 PM
Hmm , I would think you can do any aid in an "artificial " way. For example, when my mare decides she really wants to go and I don't, she used to start jigging like crazy. But I don't fight, just sit and actually start bouncing a bit-a few seconds and she is back to normal and actually almost stopped jigging nowadays.

Just because I am using my body, doesn't mean it is nice and I would never do that on a green horse or a horse I didn't know-good recipe to be bucked off!:lol: But my girl knows it is wrong and instead of fighting with her, just let her know that if she is going to jar my teeth, well I am going to make it uncomfortable for her too.:winkgrin:

But that is probably more "force" than a tap by a crop or a touch by a spur. I guess it is mostly how you use the aid.

No, that's still using a natural aid, since you're using your weight. Even though it might affect your horse more than the light touch of a spur, it's still part of your body, whereas the spur is something that you have to remember to put on your boot. ;)

Citydog's explanation was what I was trying to say too--"natural" and "artificial" aren't meant to cast any positive or negative light on the aids or a description of their strength or effect, they're just ways of referring to them.

I learned it in Pony Club as well, and have seen the designation used in books by the various old masters.

NonsensicalRogue
Jun. 4, 2010, 12:50 PM
D'oh! So it turns out I had the wrong idea- I didn't realize I was the minority on this... I feel sheepish. :D

LookinSouth
Jun. 4, 2010, 12:57 PM
Fellow trail riders-

Heading out on the trail is supposed to be relaxing, thrilling, and overall positive with as much nature and horse-human bonding as possible right?
-NR

Well in some cases yes it is supposed to be this but there are plenty of people that use trail riding for purposes other than just horse-human bonding. I frequently use trail riding for conditioning and fitness for my horse AND myself. I use it as a form of relaxation away from the ring too just walking on the buckle sometimes too. But.... most of our rides are spent at places with good footing, fields and hills so we can move out at the trot and canter and build endurance and muscle, not just mosey around for fun.

Do I ever use artificial aids like a crop? Yup. Especially when I am trail riding at home and my horse can be lazy or stubborn about passing something like goats or llamas that he has passed a gazillion times. If I don't have my crop he would rather evade my aids and turn around. If I DO have a crop he gets the message mighty quick and moves on forward. I tend to be less likely to carry it if I am hauling out to trail ride as he usually is very forward and willing to do as asked cause he is in unfamiliar surroundings and depending on me more.

Most people I trail ride with use trails as a form of cross training and they too carry a crop. Sometimes I use a martingale too ( which many might consider an "artificial aid" or "gadget") if I know I am riding in a group and I will be cantering behind other horses. My gelding likes to get strong and toss his head behind others when we get moving so a martingale helps me keep him under control. Nothing wrong with that, safety first!
There is nothing pretty about a 5'5, 130lb woman on a 16.2 very fit TBX out of control on the trail blasting by everyone else.:eek:

LookinSouth
Jun. 4, 2010, 01:01 PM
I disagree that riding on a trail means any less discipline or attention to detail than work in the school. If anything it will require more as there are many more hazards in trail riding than arena riding.

G.

Exactly. There is much more potential for injury and disaster on the trail than in an enclosed arena.

LookinSouth
Jun. 4, 2010, 01:04 PM
Is it less artificial and more natural if I use a tree branch instead of a crop with which to beat my horse? :lol:

.

:lol::lol: Been there, done that.

JollyBadger
Jun. 4, 2010, 01:21 PM
I always wear spurs when I ride.

Doesn't mean I use them, but I do wear them. You know, just in case.

My riding is nearly all done on the trail - I don't really have an arena available to speak of, at least not one with enough room to get much work done.

My own horse, Badger, is the one who can make a ride anywhere from a relaxing bonding experience to a thrilling canter, weaving in and out between trees, jumping logs, swimming creeks. Put it in front of him, and he'll do it, no questions asked. Just this morning, I ran into a guy at the feed store that I know from the local riding club and he commented to the cashier that I have a "little horse that just goes, and goes, and goes!":D

Some of the other horses I take out on trail are, for the most part, very enjoyable to ride. . .but it's not a big warm-and-fuzzy bonding fest with them. Still fun, but there's usually a bit more schooling involved as well.

I don't carry a crop, because I like to have both of my hands "free" at all times. I use long split reins, so if I do need to give a crop-like pop behind my leg, they work just fine. If all else fails, I'll break off a honeysuckle branch. . .though I usually just use those as a fly whisk. . .

mysaygrace
Jun. 4, 2010, 01:27 PM
YES, I carry a crop on the trail, rather have that aid there if I need it!! Such as the time my mare spun & turned to look at something "spooky" & her rear legs proceeded to go down over the edge of the trail towards a drain pipe. I used my legs, applied the correct rein, but my silly mare wasn't focused, but a quick harmless reminder with the crop brought her brain back to task at hand & we then could safely avoid a near disaster. Phew, I was really glad then to have my "unnatural" aid along that day!

rmh_rider
Jun. 4, 2010, 06:29 PM
Hey I thought it was going to be about carrying all the ye ol mustached one's (parelli) stuff out on the trail with you to play trail riding (like on TV), or trail obstacles. Like drag the cow barrel 10 miles out on the trail, then get off and have a jump over,around the barrel lesson. Hey, how about pushing the giant ball on a 15 mile loop trail. Oh, is that the mustached one's stuff or not? You know the giant blow up ball can be yours for $19.99, whoops that is a tv commercial, I mean $199.99 are you outta yo mine? I don't keep up with his "stuff", you know, I got, ummm, better things to do. For instance, swat horse flies from my horses butt at a full trot on switchbacks.

Oh, right, umm, yeah, they (parallieites) don't ride. Oh, umm, sorry, I forgot. This was about riding and bonding. But isn't handbar all about the social bonding? Right in an arena! you can be the proud owner, for just $199.99 (are you outta yo mine), ok moving on . . . . .

Go ride like you stole them! Watch out for the disarded cow barrel at mile marker 4.

BTW I have been endurance riding since 1990. I have NEVER carried a crop. And, yes, I rode all arabs. No other breed. But have ridden many other breeds including TB's on trails. Just never competed any other breed than arab. I have ridden some so hot, it would melt your palm prints off, and ones so stubborn no drop of water should touch them. But use a crop, nope never ever. Too much trouble to carry it. I think it is a crutch. jmo.

Beverley
Jun. 4, 2010, 06:31 PM
What a silly question. If you 'might' need a crop, of course you carry one. Or alternately break off a tree branch along the way, but that's a little less environmentally friendly unless it's a branch that needs clearing from the trail.

I generally carry, or wear, what I 'might' need on the trail. Tomorrow, I'll be moving cattle all day. Spurs yes, crop no but the lead shank tied to the saddle could be pressed into service if it were to be needed as a motivational tool. I will also be carrying a raincoat, water, bug spray, beef jerky, and an apple, the core of which might be shared along the way as another motivational tool.

As has been noted, riding is supposed to be fun. I know many, many good solid citizen trail horses that will kindly pack beginner riders if they are carrying a crop, and will stop and graze if no crop is in evidence. How are those beginners supposed to have fun, and improve their skills, without the proper tools for given circumstances?

howardh
Jun. 4, 2010, 06:59 PM
Is a beer considered and aid? :D:D

Equibrit
Jun. 4, 2010, 07:09 PM
First Aid.

saddleup
Jun. 4, 2010, 08:07 PM
I never carry a crop, but I always wear spurs.

CatOnLap
Jun. 4, 2010, 08:48 PM
Oh I had a wonderful trail ride this afternoon. Sunny , lots of wildlife, some nice hand gallops along grassy bits and up the larger hills in the forest-reminds me of eventing as a youth. Sometimes I carry a dressage wand/whip, rarely use it and didn't have it or need it today, the horse was fresh and energetic. I wouldn't need a bit 99 % of the time, but am very glad of the 1 % of the time when it was there when I needed it. Use a treed saddle- because it is safer for me and probably more comfortable for the horse. I met a very natural rider today on the trail- she was bareback in a rope halter and she slid off and walked rather than presumably, deal with her horse's behavior when mounted, as we passed by? The horses never paid any attention to each other except to exchange looks, though so who knows why she slid off. I know I can no longer mount even a smallish horse from the ground bareback as I could in my youth, so a treed saddle is a must.

egontoast
Jun. 4, 2010, 09:19 PM
she was bareback in a rope halter

What was the horse wearing?

I never take my hoss on the trail without packing a nerf bat and a thermos of wet noodles.

Guilherme
Jun. 4, 2010, 09:56 PM
Is a beer considered and aid? :D:D

To quote Baxter Black: "Beer is always appropriate." :lol:

G.

P.S. I've never had to use a crop, however, to open a beer, either at home or on the trail. ;)

pines4equines
Jun. 5, 2010, 05:49 PM
I usually use the fly whisk too if I need to tap, tap. My guy really hardly needs anything more than that.

Cue all the music you want...But I do find trail riding bonding and soothing.

Could be that I don't train horses for a living nor do I teach lessons so the trail is not all business working with a "product" persay. For me, it's like a walk in the park with a dog on a leash, you'd bond with your dog?

Hmm...The music I'd prefer would be some sort of 70-80s heavy metal, maybe some Jethro Tull...Oops, maybe that's not elevator music enough...Okay, then MacArthur Park or some Gordon Lightfoot.

Mor4ward
Jun. 5, 2010, 07:43 PM
I've only had to carry a whip with one particularly sour horse.
Once we walked the quarter mile to the trail head, he was OK - just really reluctant to leave familiar surroundings.

Even though my current mount is unflappable on trail - I still wear spurs.
The best thing about spurs is that you don't need to use them ... it's better to have them and not need them than need them and not have them.

For me, it's for those few moments when an argument isn't an option: whether it be him sticking his haunches into the middle of the road when a car is coming up, or he refuses to cross a particularly black patch of mud (we have a natural spring on the trail that perpetually floods a stretch).

I don't take a whip with this guy, since he is sensible and forward - very happy to go on point when going out with a group.

But spurs are a nice "ace-in-the-hole" when you really need them.

jeano
Jun. 6, 2010, 06:16 PM
I have a crop or dressage whip clipped to the breastplate Ds on both my saddles. Many, many rides I never have to pick them up or unclip them. All my rides are trail rides.

Since I do a lot of riding at the Parellified Neighbor's place, I have had lately to dodge barrels, tires, pie pans and milk jugs dangling from trees, and all other kinds of scary dreck on her network of trails as she gears up for the Playday From Hell. It would be cheating to use the whip to get my horses past all this naturalness so I have resorted to encouraging words and rewarded with peppermints for obstacles conquered.

However, out in the real world of trailriding--I might have to get the horse past a train or a nest of baby armadillos or the road grader or the fellas with the horse eating saws trimming trees for the powerlines, and sometimes the heese need a swat at the right time to keep them from sticking them and me out into traffic as we encounter these monsters.

I cant do any schooling in the neighbor's arena, too many balls and tarps and tires in there. Have to do it out on the trails and dirt roads....

So, yeah, I use a mean old scary whip. Do I get points back because my horses are barefoot and I dont use tiedowns, flashes, drawreins or spurs?

Mor4ward
Jun. 6, 2010, 06:34 PM
So, yeah, I use a mean old scary whip. Do I get points back because my horses are barefoot and I dont use tiedowns, flashes, drawreins or spurs?

Yes, you do :lol:

jeano
Jun. 6, 2010, 06:59 PM
yaaaay! Points will probably be deducted further for plastic tack and for sometimes resorting to a short-shanked walking horse bit, though...and for attire. And for bad equitation. And for cussing the horse when it wont stand still for the Old Lady Mounting and Dismounting Rituals. Sigh.

jazzrider
Jun. 6, 2010, 08:09 PM
If the plastic tack is zebra striped, hot pink or sparkles, I think you should lose points. But for the rest of it, I think you're fine. :D

I don't carry a crop out on the trail, though there has been many a time I wish I did. My hands are a mess -- it's hard enough to hold the reins for 2-4 hours. I like the breast plate idea though. How do you clip it? I can't envision how a full dressage whip could stay out of the way...

jeano
Jun. 7, 2010, 08:51 AM
If the plastic tack is zebra striped, hot pink or sparkles, I think you should lose points. But for the rest of it, I think you're fine. :D

I don't carry a crop out on the trail, though there has been many a time I wish I did. My hands are a mess -- it's hard enough to hold the reins for 2-4 hours. I like the breast plate idea though. How do you clip it? I can't envision how a full dressage whip could stay out of the way...

Actually, it stays out of the way just fine, and being a nice long whip I can even pick it up and use it without having to unclip it.

I dont use a breastplate, so the dees are freed up for waterbottle holders and the like. Usually on the dressage saddle (which is sadly deficient in dees) I keep the water bottle on the front right of the saddle, and can still use a carabiner type clip thru either the snap on the holder or on the dee itself. I took the wrist loop off an old dead crop and put it on a shiny new dressage whip (oh the humanity.) so, carabiner on saddle, wrist loop through carabiner.

The whip hangs straight down and seems not to bother the horse one bit, doesnt get in the way, so far hasnt interfered with anything. I can pick up the whip and remind horse that I have it without undoing it. If I know I'm going to be going through a sticky place (like, past a ton of dogs barking on the right and a lot of vehicular traffic on the left as I go down the road margin) then I will unclip and put the wrist loop on my wrist. If I want to keep from inadvertantly tickling the horse while I'm riding carrying the whip then I'll park it across the pommel sticking straight out. I am clumsy and have terrible arthritis in my right hand but so far I've managed to only drop a crop a couple of times, and the dressage whip never.

Which is a blessing because the Old Lady Mounting and Dismounting Rituals are best performed where there's a mounting block of some kind. For my horses this could be almost anything. Last time I dropped my gloves I was with my riding buddy and there was nothing handy except a little crumbly sand bank. I got on it, parked the gelding next to it, put left toe in stirrup, reached across saddle, tossed offside stirrup to buddy, she hauled and I heaved and we were good to go.

She is somewhat less decrepit than I am and wouldve gotten off and retrieved my gloves, but for the fact that she rides a honking huge 16.2 foxtrotter and she's only about 5'2"and is also, shall we say, gravitationally challenged as well.

jazzrider
Jun. 7, 2010, 09:27 AM
I think I got it. Though duct taping a strap to my dressage whip will probably be the last nail in the coffin of my dressage days. ;) Thanks for the info! We've been blessed this week with a drop back down into the 70's and no humidity, so I have a feeling I'll be skipping out of work early one day to ride the trail -- I'll give it a try!

Simbalism
Jun. 8, 2010, 12:31 AM
In warmer weather I always carry my fly whisk. It has a good stout bamboo handle so is often used for a smack if my mare is acting ugly to a fellow trail horse(she has a bubble and sometimes gives snarky looks) or if she is hesitating over something. It also comes in handy for gates and tree branches.

Rubyfree
Jun. 8, 2010, 02:07 AM
I've never been out on the trail and thought "Gosh, I wish I didn't have these spurs on! They're really cramping our bonding time."

FYI, dressage whips make handy snow or water depth gauges.

jeano
Jun. 9, 2010, 08:08 AM
I've never been out on the trail and thought "Gosh, I wish I didn't have these spurs on! They're really cramping our bonding time."

FYI, dressage whips make handy snow or water depth gauges.

...and sometimes you can use them to point out to the horse where the peppermint went when you dropped it. What I need is a nice long whip with a little grasper gizmo on it so I can pick up gloves with it. Or would chewing gum on the end of a string work? Or perhaps I should just wrap a velcro strap around the business end of the whip--seems everything I take with me on the trail either IS velcro or sticks to velcro at some point.

We could always enhance bonding time and multi-task by carrying grooming equipment. Ride with reins in one hand and dandy brush in the other. Maybe we can market this concept and become zillionaires.

pines4equines
Jun. 9, 2010, 10:14 AM
I want a grasper gizmo!