CRAZY weather week for lots of us. Monday in the 70's, got a wonderful ride in. Tuesday RAIN then COLD and WIND. It was 6 degrees this morning when I got to work. Hopefully next week the weather will warm up some and calm down. It is now February, which for me mentally is much better than January. I can start to see the light at the end of the cold...
Some days the best thing about my job is that the chair spins.
Well, I prooved I am a whimp... yesrterday I got on my horse and rode for about 15 minutes but the wind was whipping at about 50 mph and the temps were dropping fast. I got off and thought about riding today instead. Well.. the wind has continued and the temps are in the 20's again! No riding for me this weekend either.. I guess I will just have to wait until next week...
Is winter over yet!
Mai Tai aka Tyler RIP March 1994-December 2011
Grief is the price we pay for love- Gretchen Jackson
"And here she comes. Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it's ZENYATTA!"
On a positive note, I awoke this morning to the Ground Hog's prediction of an early spring. Both local Ground Hogs agree. So, BRING IT ON!
This morning was 14* with a light, steady wind and a light, steady snowfall which was suprisingly unpleasant and gave me horse a case of the sneezes and headshakes. We both came back to the barn dusted in snow. We have 6-8" of fresh snow on top of mud so today's objective was a 10 minute walk warm up followed by a 10 minute jog in the outdoor. When I got back to the barn and was putting things right all I could think was that today was perfect day to stay in with a good book.
On my way home, in icky ishy slippery slushy mushy driving, I passed one of our intrepid cross country cyclists just heading out onto the county road and I realised I was not the only nut suffering for my sport today. I remember a couple of years back my husband and I had ventured out deep into dairy country on just such a day to a syrup shack which serves all you can eat country pancake breakfasts every weekend from Valentines through April Fools. The roads were snow covered, the snow banks and drifts monumental and we were relieved to see the icicle laden sugar shack come into view. Not long after we had settled into the warmth of the wood stove and the large griddle the door opened and in trouped a half dozen of the cycle team who had ridden 20 MILES through this crap.
...and after filling up with home cooked pancakes and sausages, they were going to have to ride back. But they were having a great time.
I have an F grade for the winter. Haven't been on Rico since November, and cancelled 3 out of 8 lessons in Dec and Jan. Between crappy weather, slick footing, and being sick, I finally threw in the towel and admitted to myself that I will just have to write off the winter as far as Rico is concerned and start legging him up in the spring.
Hopefully, as the days start getting longer, morning rides will resume soon.
I got one ride in this week. The weather was mild and melty which made it really pleasant to be out but the footing was horrendous and the road too snow filled to share with traffic.
We settled for a lot of walking, figure work and some light trotting. Did some lateral work and I roughed up his haircoat under my left seat bone so badly I fell asleep worrying that my penchant for sleeping on my left side with my right knee up has caused a curvature of the spine which makes it impossible for me to sit square in the saddle. Trust me, that is not something you want to have to explain when your husband whispers in the dark "what are you thinking about".
I have been awful this winter. I have only ridden a handful of times since early December. I am supposed to go on a trail ride today but am just not feeling it. I do hope it is just the winter weather that has me so housebound.....
Due to the layer of ice between the mud and the snow, we stayed in the tiny indoor today. But I crossed another "To Do" off my list. We went bitless. I always thought that made more sense in the winter when you have to warm bits. I put the snaffle on too with the rein tied on his neck, but no need for it. Lots of figures, walk, trot, canter, whoa and back with no issues. I'm not saying I'd want to head down the road like that, but its a start.
I've always felt a finished horse should be safe and controllable in a variety of bridles/disciplines, and when younger frequently rode and showed my horses with halters, neck ropes or less. Remember the old Genuine Pleasure classes?
Well I'm trying to decide between building an ark or start riding with scuba gear! So much rain here in the southeast...it started Sunday afternoon but expected to finally end sometime tomorrow. So far I have had 3" of rain and everything is squishy! I hope to maybe get on Thursday but probably will only be able to walk around as everything will be soaked. Maybe a light ride Friday but this weekend I won't ride. It will be cold & windy...YUK! So until the clouds part and it dries out...I'm just watching the rain drops.
Today the hayfields were melted, windswept, and refrozen to the depth of several inches which allowed us to go for a long, brisk, conditioning walk around the 40+ acres of sloping fields. It has been weeks since we've been out of sight of the barn and my horse felt like a powder keg actively searching for an ignition source. The Saturday morning dump run traffic was out en force and William was in his mischievious "car racing" mood which is cute when he's in his paddock but not so much on a late winter hack. This meant while we were close to the road, any time traffic approached from the rear we had to halt and face the other way to discourage his idea of giving chase. We completed the half mile road perimeter with only one minor infraction.
Last couple of weeks have been a bust between overly wet/muddy conditions and health issues compounded by cold/flu symptoms. I managed to get on once earlier this week just to remind myself what it felt like to sit on my horse. Made a productive 20 minutes and worked on a couple of trail obstacles. February is my LEAST favorite month of the year. I'm glad it's also the shortest one. Looking forward to March.
February is my LEAST favorite month of the year. I'm glad it's also the shortest one. Looking forward to March.
You and me both!!! And March brings time change which is a help for me!!!
I was able to ride Thursday and Friday this week and had nice hacks both days! On Thursday it was still wet so I just walk / trotted but she was sensible and good. I didn't ride today since it was low 40's with dropping temps and windy (20-30mph). Hope I don't regret it since I'm going for a lesson tomorrow!!!
I'm so sick of being stuck in my house. Haven't seen my mare in 2 days and I'm going nuts. Moody as all get out! If it wasn't for my craptastic driveway and lack of a 4 wheel drive car, this wouldn't be happening!!
Still riding 2-3 times a week. Bitless and Bareback... we've been forced indoors until further notice. The freeze and thaw cycle has created deadly ice slicks under the snow not only on the road edge but in the outdoor arena too. The one time I ventured out there just to longe, Mr. Horse found one and went sliding on his side. I once had a horse injured very seriously this way so we're not risking it.
Today, the end of week two being stuck indoors, I decided we'd work on side passing. He knows how... pretty much. He does leg yields and shoulders in etc and I can move him easily towards and away from the mounting block since I dismount there (long way down). He has successfully side passed along a wall when asked, but has never gotten the concept of doing it in the wide open. He drifts backwards.
So today I put down one ground pole to let him know when he was drifting. He got the idea soon enough, side passing, hesitantly each way. After about half a dozen times, circle left, return to pole, sidepass right, circle right return to pole etc. he was getting pretty smooth. At the end of each successful trip of the pole I would stop and rub his neck and tell him how brilliant he is...
Then he decided he'd cooperated long enough and backed out. "No, forward and then left..." horse continues to back out and right. Right calf hammer hammer hammer on his right side = "halt now you mule". It's impossible to "whoa" a backing horse At this point, Mr. Horse who hasn't done any serious work in two weeks despite being paid regularly on the dot says "you suck, I'm done." And hops with his front feet. Just a threat, about two inches, and since A. I had no bit in his mouth (side pull instead) and B. I am trying to get him to go forward, I am confident I didn't trap him into it. It was just a stubborn "F-You"
Ooooo... not cool.
Swat. Both legs on. Forward NOW. I rode him straight at the wall, and then asked for a sidepass left (which was what I wanted remember?)
He side passes swiftly and flawlessly about 25 feet, ask for turn on the haunches, perfect, sidepass left about 10 feet to the [dis]mounting block. End of session.
Grrrr... I don't know who I'm more frustrated with. Me for not stopping one trip sooner or Him for flipping me off. We need to get outside and do something fun.
One week until the clock springs forward!!!!! YEAH!!!!! Can't wait but unfortunately it will be happening on a show weekend. Oh well!!!!
So where is everyone? Still riding and staying warm???
This past week for me has been up & down. Monday started with horse having coffin joints injected and change in front shoes. She wasn't lame but was a little sore. I LOVE my vet & farrier!!!
So no I didn't ride until Thursday and OMG it was cold & windy. Horse hadn't been ridden in a week. She was pretty good Thursday and Friday she was even better.
Took her for a lesson at my trainer's farm on Saturday. Now that was an adventure with very naughty horse mixed with some good too! I got on then decided to lunge her. Got back on and decided to lunge some more. Finally she was paying more attention to me and not all the boogie men hiding around ready to pounce on her. Started jumping which she normally stops being silly and pays attention. But the one scary area of the ring was still scary. Well I came off because of her silliness. Got back on and finally we got it all together.
Last year I showed 2'6" and have done a little at 2'9" but my goal is to eventually get to 3'. Mostly the issue is my mind as I know the horse can do it. Yesterday the jumps were about 2'3 - 26" and my trainer raise a few jumps up some more. She put one up and asked me if it looked ok...I laughed and said it would be better for me not to look at how high the jump was. But I think a few of the jumps may have been 3'!!! I had a few issues but we worked through it and did pretty well. I'm thrilled and maybe we can really get to 3' this year!!!
So hurry up spring as I can't bare another day of cold wind! I'm going to wimp out today and not ride!!!
I did well through December and January, but between health and weather, February kicked my butt. Still under the weather, but I'm looking to get back in the saddle this coming Saturday (barring rain).
This group has been helpful, so thanks! and hope to do this again next winter.