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Indiana National Drive

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  • Indiana National Drive

    Well the date is coming up fast, who all is going?

    It appears the stars have aligned, so we are planning to attend! Husband has been putting in his time driving the green Pair, they are much smoother than when they came home. Both in moving together and heading towards the power steering, so he said we should attend!!

    Got our reservations in, though too late for a golf cart. We plan to bring the Gator, because our camping is not close to the stalls. Oh well, you snooze, you lose! Ha ha. I just don't want to CARRY everything from trailer to stalls, so Gator needs to come.

    No golf cart means only one carriage coming, and it has to fit on the truck bed. The Funline won't. So I spent Monday moving things to get the Pair marathon vehicle out from behind LOTS of stuff. Then had to trade single marathon from in the barn, to the carriage shed, for parking room for the Pair carriage in the barn. AND then put all the misc. stuff back away. Husband gave the Pair carriage a check over, put air in the pole shock absorber, put the pole on, and we hitched the horses to it.

    He did that evening session with the new-to-them vehicle, and they were a bit edgy at the new weight and noise it made. They did settle by the end of the session, but we need more work before they are as good as with their original carriage. Husband said he had forgotten how much fun it was to drive, short turns, a bit stiffer suspension. I just watched, to avoid too many new things all at once. We have several days before departing to work them with this carriage.

    Our plan is to leave Thursday, get there and drive, then do more driving on Friday, Saturday and Sunday morning. Then head for home about noon. It is a 5hour drive, with a few extra stops because they are not used to hauling long distances. We also have to practice loading, they have never been in the big trailer with backwards riding stalls, higher side ramps to get in and out with. I think we are planning to sleep in the LQs of trailer.

    Hoping to get in several drives a day, they are fairly fit and recover fast. They need time out driving, maybe visit the Hazards, especially the water. They do FINE crossing puddles, mud at home because it is THEIR water. One acted quite silly driving thru the barn across a wet spot in the aisle and a mud puddle at the Trainers. Have to get over that. But just walking the hazards, following the reins, seeing other carriages and horses they don't know, will be great exposure for both of them. They will sleep well and so will we! Ha ha

    So when you see a funny looking outfit pull in, truck and big trailer, that will probably be us!

  • #2
    Me! Me! Me & Bugs 🐎
    We arrive Wednesday afternoon & stay through the Mimosa Drive on Saturday.
    Hoping to meet you & DH as well as your horses
    No stall assignments rec'd yet, but I will be stabled with my Club - but at least 8-10 members & spouses.
    At least 1 couple will be camping, so I know where that is.

    I am doing something new to me as well: hitchhiking a ride with our former club president.
    He has a DraftX & stock trailer, but his cart goes in the front of the trailer & gate closes it off.
    My wire cart will go in the bed of his truck.
    So Bugs will be riding with the larger horse & {gulp} no divider.
    We tried them loaded together at our last drive & things seemed okay. My eyeball estimate says Bugs can be safe in the space & once we're moving both s/b pretty occupied with standing.
    It is a 3h drive for us, so straight through with perhaps a stop for lunch, gas.

    Forecast for Edinburgh says hot Wednesday, 40% chance for rain Thursday & 80, Friday & Saturday look lovely, dry & 70s.

    Looking fwd to a COTH Meetup 👋
    *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
    Steppin' Out 1988-2004
    Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
    Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015


    • #3
      2Dogs, don't worry about Bugs in the trailer. When my mini came to this area it was by accident and in a load of Draft horses. His prior owner picked up several draft horses at an auction and loaded up and left, it was a full load and a tight fit.. When they got home and went to unload something didn't seem quite right. A couple of the big horses didn't want to move and there was "something going on" underneath them. Well, things got sorted and when then did, they found my mini standing UNDER the big boys. It was the only place for him. To this day no one knows how he got there because they did not buy him. It remains a mystery. But he rode just fine with the big boys .

      Hope you and Goodhors have a wonderful time at the Drive!


      • #4
        cayuse Thanks for the vote of confidence
        Once upon a time, I was part of a group that jenga-ed 6 horses on a 4H stock trailer.
        Up front we put 2 DraftX geldings with a just-15H TB mare between them.
        Arrived at our destination to find the 2 Big Guys pressed against the walls with Miss Thang standing near-crosswise between them.
        Her face plainly said: "Bring it!"

        Bugs gets along fine with my 16H Walker - sharing a stall & hay routinely.
        Walker draws the line at Bugs' nose in his feedpan, but that just means ears laid back & side-eye.
        *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
        Steppin' Out 1988-2004
        Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
        Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015


        • #5
          Enjoy ladies! Sounds like a fun time will be had by all


          • #6
            & An Excellent Time was had by all
            160 entries!
            Assortment of breeds, carriages & folks.
            Weather cooperated (for the most part) & we had sunny skies & moderate temps.
            Bugs, of course, was his Rockstar Self. Garnered many compliments on both his cuteness & stamina.
            The first as he is now in full ShaggyPony mode, the second as he lasted through a 12mi RT drive to the POW Chapel & iron bridge. He insisted on trotting - good strong road trot - with a stretch of cantering, so he could keep his favorite place: nose nearly resting on the cart in front of us. We were the sole mini in my Club group.
            He is one tough, barefoot, cookie!

            We also played with Cones & the water obstacles - both of which he aced at Pretend Prelim speed.
            I had to wear wet shoes the rest of that day. When you are driving a mini through bellydeep water, your shoes get wet!

            We participated in the Tacky Tack Class.
            My "costume" of shavings & hay plastered all over Bugs blew off (thanks, breeze!) as we entered the arena.
            At least my tiara stayed in place:

            And here we are getting ready for the Mimosa Drive where we drove one of the wooded trails to a clearing & were served the cocktail along with cookies.
            Hat is my new bar-gain from the Tack Swap:

            Best of all, I got to meet goodhors & her husband along with their lovely new pair: Hawk & Alice.
            We did not get a chance to drive together, but still fun to meet IRL.
            Grrrrr..... pic of us is giving me conniptions loading from imgur.
            I'll add it when/if I can
            *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
            Steppin' Out 1988-2004
            Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
            Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015


            • #7
              So glad you got to go, and had a great time.



              • Original Poster

                We had a terrific time at the National Drive! Meeting 2 Dogs and Bugs was fun. We just did not have enough time to talk, with our wanting to get in so much driving time. And somehow, I never managed to get any pictures! Every time I was going to get the camera out, I got distracted and forgot. Guess that means we will always remember it as "perfect" with no pesky photos making us liars! Ha ha

                We did get in 3 drives on Friday and Saturday, plus Sunday morning before the rain started. Horses saw MUCH that was new to them, were pretty darn good about it for not ever going places before. Most of our "interesting moments" were out driving on the course. Route markers can be scary if black and green! I had never seen a horse try to evade like Hawk did there!! Glad Alyss was a rock, he could not push her sideways and she never saw the marker. So it was over in a moment, just kept moving forward and marker was BEHIND his blinkers. Alyss took exception to a couple big timber jumps that appeared suddenly where the trails came together. Hawk got pushed into the bushes for a moment, then the fences were behind her blinkers so we could straighten out again. Have to say we missed most of the "jungle wildlife" on the Safari Drive because we we watching our horses instead! Only spotted 6 out of 15 animals. Ha ha, not good jungle people.

                We were out about an hour and a half to two hours each outing, then back to stalls so they could eat and think about all they had seen. They are pretty fit so it was avoiding mental overload we wanted. They always came out alert, stood well to harness, hitch/unhitch, unharness, in the big aisle space between barns. I headed them using leadropes, they stood very well, then asked to walk off.

                Our friend/Trainer was there too, she gave us a lead thru the two water hazards, covered wagons, tarp and painted post hazards. Our horses figured her horses would get eaten first by the scary things, then not be hungry for second set of horses! Ha ha They were very good when asked to go again without a lead, guess it was not scary any more.

                We asked a lot from them, they delivered! Such good horses, guess we will keep them!! They are now halfway thru their hundred hitchings, as green horses.

                It is an amazing gathering, such an extensive range of things to expose them to, in an open, calm setting. We got some bonus "training opportunities" with the Shooting Cowboys competing in the indoor arenas on the other side of the road. Shots every minute for a day and a halk makes horses ignore the noise fast. Low, loud, fast flying helicopters went on by a couple times. Probably training exercises at the Army base next door. Horses looked but no reaction to them. The ND crew were exceptional in being helpful, organized, providing snacks, lovely activities. Dave waited up for our arrival, delayed by weather and road construction. Got us to our stalls, then the campsite so we could go to bed! Then had great weather for our days there. No bugs to speak of.

                You might want to put this on your event calendar for next year.


                • #9
                  Hi goodhors 👋
                  I did get that one selfie of us, but am having a devil of a time getting it here 😣

                  You can see pics the Pro photog took on his site:
                  They are listed in alpha order, by last name.
                  He's kinda pricy unless you choose to get all the pics of you delivered digitally or on a CD or USB.

                  Glad you & DH & your lovely pair enjoyed the Drive.
                  I am hoping to go back for the Spring Fling & again next Fall.
                  C U there! 😁

                  Apologies for misspelling Alyss name.
                  Your way is better
                  *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
                  Steppin' Out 1988-2004
                  Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
                  Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015


                  • Original Poster

                    No problem with spelling! Her registered name is GHP Alyssum, which of course got shortened for easier calling. I have never seen anyone spell it like we do. Ha ha

                    Yes we plan to get the professional pictures, he sure had a lot of us! I think I like the Queen Wave of myself best, lounging in the back of the carriage, getting driven about. I had just waved at him way out somewhere on course in the brush, so both he and I laughed.

                    We also hope to get back next spring, perhaps bringing a different Pair. Have to see if we can get them worked to be fit beforehand. We could not get any driving time this year, too rainy in March, Apri, May and June. I think we got out maybe 6-8 times in all those months. I was going to fill out one of the ADS miles and hours sheets, see how we did this year. Gave up on that! Missed the local CDE because they had not been driven enough, which kind of spoiled our fun. But it POURED there for the 3 days before it started, making a mess for parking the big outfits. Then Friday it stopped and didn't rain at our house again until August!! Lovely soil at the Event, drained off and solid dirt by Friday midafternoon! No mud to deal with anymore. Personally, I think the Organizer made a pact with "someone", for things to turn around so dramatically! Ha ha


                    • #11
                      I would personally waltz with Satan to assure the weather we had at the Drive!
                      Whatever the Sadlers & Co do, I am in favor.

                      At home it rained & got cold, arriving Wednesday we missed most of the heat & humidity & the rest of the week was great.
                      I understand there was rain Sunday, but Club friends did get in a drive before heading home.

                      May we both make it back for Spring Fling, end of April 2020!
                      Then you can marvel at Bugs' sticktoitiveness & keep up 'tude.
                      Although Alyss & Hawk might have him rethinking that
                      Are your other horses as tall?
                      *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
                      Steppin' Out 1988-2004
                      Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
                      Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015


                      • Original Poster

                        Hawk is the taller, matching closely to the other older geldings of 17h. His future partner is 17h. Alyss is the tallest at the moment, of the younger horses, at 16.2h. Reina stopped at about 16h, but the three younger horses, 6-4-2yrs, may get as tall as Alyss. The gelding I expect to get taller, just because he is a gelding and they gain height until age 7 or 8yrs. Our mares seem to get tall by 4-5yrs, then fill out a lot.

                        It was a great drive home after we got out of construction on the road. Shower as we left, then nice, sunny all the way home. Been very nice this week too.

                        We will have to see about coming again. We WANT to go, but sometimes other stuff happens to mess up the fun!


                        • #13
                          Oh, I know all about Other Stuff
                          Hope Spring is relatively free of it!

                          Funny, I've been getting away from bigger horses.
                          Not intentionally, just happened.
                          When I got my farm (15yrs ago) I had my sort-of retired Show Hunter - skosh over 16h.
                          When I lost DH's horse, just before the farm was ready for them, I got a TWH.
                          He was every bit of 17h - my vet called him the Belgian Walking Horse.
                          After losing those 2, I got a COTH Giveaway: 17.3 WB.
                          To keep him company I got a freebie: 13h Hackney Pony.
                          It was a novelty for me to have a horse I could stand eyeball to eyeball with

                          When I lost the WB a friend gave me her TWH - a mere 16h.
                          Then came Bugs... All 34" of him.

                          So my herd is now Papa Bear, Mama Bear (actually another Papa) & Baby Bear.
                          All bays w/minimal chrome.
                          Walker has 2 anklets on the left, small star & a big snip.
                          Hackney has 1 anklet, LH.
                          Bugs is roany in places & may go more that way as his sire was waaaaaay roaned out.

                          In my dreams they go as a Unicorn with Bugs in front
                          *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
                          Steppin' Out 1988-2004
                          Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
                          Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015


                          • Original Poster

                            Well if the Budweiser hitch can move out with the tiny donkey in the lead, you can probably get Bugs leading the others in a hitch too!! Leader has to be FORWARD, and he likes to go! Ha ha This will need pictures when you do it.

                            We got the Cleveland Bays because they were noted for their soundness in years of work, no white to wash! Our first driving horses were 14.2h, both yellow with 4 white stockings, blazes, white manes and tails. We had to wash them every day at a show, always laying in the poop. Husband did not want that again, so the Clevelands seemed perfect. However with better midwest grazing, genetics, ours outgrew the "average" 16-16.2h size quickly. At that time bigger horses were needed to make time, pulling weight, in Combined Driving. We never TOLD them they were too big, they thought they could turn like little horses! Very handy. We managed to slip thru one hazard, not built to the Rules then, where 17h, full-bodied, horse actually did not fit!! She got tall, shaft tips went up over the fence, sidepassing the turning in there! We were pretty amazed we made it, opening was her actual body length, so road cart should NOT have made it. Live and learn, we measured hazards after that!! She was our first Bay, set a very high standard for the rest to follow in temperment, try, bravery. A very special horse, did everything we asked of her.


                            • #15
                              Bugs would have no problem being the Head of a Unicorn.
                              He keeps up with the Big Guys now when we drive with my Club.
                              Nose nearly on the back step of whoever we're following.
                              I'd hear the one in front of us trotting, and Bugs' two steps to their one.
                              Them: 1, 2, 1, 2
                              Us: 1,2,1,2,1,2
                              Kept that pace up when we did the 12mi RT to the POW Chapel. Road trot the whole way, with only a brief canter.
                              He is the Little Engine That Could

                              I hear you on color.
                              DH's Eventer was a way-roaned-out strawberry sabino - 4 high whites & near-baldface blaze.
                              Who inevitably slept in manure the night before a show

                              *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
                              Steppin' Out 1988-2004
                              Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
                              Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015


                              • #16
                                Late to the party, but glad everyone had fun at the ND. I was able to go to 2011 ND at KHP. Had a great time. Been to the KHP a couple of times since and always pat myself on the back, that I got to drive my horse there!!!!!