It has been frigid here (for Virginia) this week. I've only ridden Toby a little the last two days because our Nicola Wilson clinic is this weekend. The rides have been short and sweet. "Stretch your legs and remember you're broke" type rides. Thank goodness for an indoor (and lights, since I had to ride last night), two quarter sheets, and the ability to squeeze my layers into my full chaps.
BUT, sometimes you just HAVE to get out! I did about 10 minutes of w/t/c in the ring just now, but I could tell we were both feeling squirrelly. So, we braved the cold and the wind and the blowing snow and did a quick jaunt down and back on the drive. It was amazing the change in Toby's demeanor once we got back to the barn.
Moral of the story? PLEASE try and get your ponies out of the ring on occasion! Even the good ones get tired of a 20 meter circle.
Hear! Hear! Hey, took Rien out for a long hack when it was a high of 10. Just made sure to not get him breathing too deep but at least get out of the white box. Went to the mountains when temps hit freezing. Climbing frozen ground, busting new trail through snow, gives both the young horse and their rider an amazing sense of confidence and adventure. Can't get that in no ring.
I wish I had nice trails/driveways/quiet roads/whatever to hack on! The best I can do (and not in the in winter with the snow on the ground) is take a walk around the hilly field he's turned out in, and that's only when the barn owner isn't around to yell at me for doing this
I hadn't ridden my TB mare since last Monday due to the temps, frozen footing(no indoor). My barn buddy and I met at the barn today(Sunday) and went out about the farm. We are lucky to have 100 acres to ride on. Mostly stayed in the fields, although did go thru one section of woods. Mostly still frozen, but the grass was thick enough in the fields to get a short trot in one area. My mare was awesome! My friend's Fresian cross did have a small amount of turkey drama, when a flock of turkeys ran along the edge of the woods, but my mare didn't even blink an eye.
I am so excited to get out on the newly plowed roads around the farm where Guinness lives. They start plowing and snow blowing in earnest starting Feb 1st here. In some ways, it feels better to do this than riding in the indoor all winter like we used to.
Ahh, not counting the couple frigid-cold days we had last week, I LOVE riding when it's like this! Horsie and I do a lot more exploring in the winter, thanks to the lack of vegetation in the woods-- and an inch or two of snow really highlights the "wildlife trails" to follow.
*friend of bar.ka
"Evidently, I am an unrepentant b*tch, possible trouble maker, and all around super villian"
I'm missing the trails right now, but the ground is rock hard frozen here, and the mare is overdue for hock injections and really not liking the cold -- it was taking 35-40 minutes to get her going without a lot of pushback -- so we're confined to the indoor. Injections are Friday so in about 2 weeks we'll be back out again.
In the meantime, on one of the really, really cold nights last week, I put her bridle on, hopped on her on top of her blankets, and walked her around for 35 minutes or so. I'd never done that before, though I've ridden her bareback a fair amount. It's a nice warm way to ride.
---- "You have to have experiences to gain experience."
Mine live out 24/7 and my arena is a small section of the pasture that is flat and harrowed (no fencing around it though). When it is too muddy or frozen, we hit the driveways (LONG gravel roads with lots of hills) and have a great time.
I agree - it does wonders for trust and confidence.
Once the Flu is done running thru the last of us, we hope to get back to either a weekly trip hunting or hitting the trails at Fair Hill where even if its wet or greasy/slippery we can ride the cindered trails....everyone is bored with ring and loose school even has lost it's yippee appeal....