• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.



Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 1/26/16)
See more
See less

Is 13 miles too much for first timer?

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Is 13 miles too much for first timer?

    Now that I finally have a trail horse to enjoy (only took me 25 years to figure out that I REALLY needed one ), I joined a local riding and driving club that offers a group trail ride in April. You can ride it judged or unjudged - how exactly do you judge a trail ride - is it time or ability to go through/over obstacles? And they offer 13 or 20 mile distances.

    My girl is a 17 hand North American Spotted Draft that used to be a driving show horse but is now my dressage/trail mount. I've only been able to ride on the weekends this past winter for about an hour at a time and she does great, altho she does huff a bit after we do any cantering.

    I assume this would be a three hour ride (?) Would that be too much for our first time?

    Here's a couple pics of the big girl. I LOFF her Thanks for any advice!

    I would like to think I will die an heroic death...

    But it's more likely I'll trip over my dog and choke on a spoonful of frosting.

  • #2
    What kind of pace are we talking about? Mostly walk, or a fast paced ride, or whatever you chose?
    "When life gives you scurvy, make lemonade."


    • Original Poster

      I'm pretty sure it's whatever you choose. I don't know anyone in the club yet, so we may just be on our own to do as we please. If we were to walk and trot (maybe a little cantering thrown in for fun) how long should it take to cover 13 miles do you think?
      I would like to think I will die an heroic death...

      But it's more likely I'll trip over my dog and choke on a spoonful of frosting.


      • #4
        Originally posted by Fessy's Mom View Post
        My girl is a 17 hand North American Spotted Draft that used to be a driving show horse but is now my dressage/trail mount. I've only been able to ride on the weekends this past winter for about an hour at a time and she does great, altho she does huff a bit after we do any cantering.

        I assume this would be a three hour ride (?) Would that be too much for our first time?
        I don't have any experience with draft horses, but one thing I have seen consistently come up when discussing using drafts in long distance riding is their susceptibility to tying up. If you research draft horses and "monday morning disease" you can find information. This article recommends a high fat, low carb diet for horses prone to epsm, which presents as typing up. http://www.ruralheritage.com/vet_clinic/epsm.htm

        I would definitely research tying up and how to recognize it and manage it when it happens. If you don't manage it correctly or even if you do, your horse can suffer some severe health issues, including muscle and kidney damage.

        I don't mean to be all doom and gloom. Horses that are competed over long distances are at risk for metabolic problems, and drafts are even more at risk. Therefore, it is important to know how to prevent or manage it.

        I would recommend the 13 mile, and I would alternate a walk and trot. Keep checking her large muscles in her hind end to make sure they are soft. If she shows reluctance to move forward and her hind end muscles have become rigid, do not make her move as that will increase muscle and kidney damage. Also, if it is at all chilly, put a rump rug on her and leave it on her. I ride a National Show Horse, and I put on rump rug on him during chilly weather. He has a bigger rear end that the pure Arabians, so he needs protection to keep those muscles warm earlier and longer than the pure Arabians I ride with.

        Good luck and have fun with her!


        • #5
          I took my guy on a 15 mile ride for our first organized ride. We just did lots of walking and some trotting thrown in when the footing was nice. I think it took us a little over three hours, as we would also stop and graze a little or rest after the hills. It was just a fun ride, so we paid no attention to time at all.

          I was a little sore the next day, but my gelding seemed to do fine! He is a TB that was extremely fit at the track but had about 10 months off, and then just light trail riding prior to the 15 mile ride.

          I found it helped to take my friend and her mellow QH buddy with us, then my horse didn't try and keep up with the others that wanted to go faster or get all worried if he was being left alone, also make sure and ride at your own pace- don't let others pull you along faster than you need to go.

          Sounds like a blast -enjoy!


          • #6
            I don't know anything about the breed but just like with any other horse, you should slowly work them up to the distance you would like to do at the event. Sounds like you have another month to get ready so make yourself a schedule, alternating between arena work and trail riding with days off inbetween. On the trail, slowly increase your distance one day, and ride less but with more trotting on another day.

            Borrow a Garmin Forerunner or any other such device so you can figure out how fast your horse walks, trots, canters. You can finish 13 miles in around three hours if your horse has a 4 mph walk and you trot just once or twice. Realistically, he's probably slower than that, so just trot a little more if you must finish within that time. If time is not an issue, just walk!

            Conditioning and learning to read your horse is everything. Does he drink on the trail, does he want to eat when offered? Does he poop and pee, does he seem into it? Is he anxious, spooky, herd bound? All these things are important to prevent your horse from getting ill. 13 miles is not very far at all but if your horse is not physically and mentally fit then you will not enjoy it and might harm him. But you have time to get ready so Happy Trails!


            • #7
              You have a month to get in shape. Start exercising.

              13 miles is not very far for a horse. A dog walk is 3 mph and is a 4 hour ride. A good walk is 5 mph and most trotting will be 7-10 mph.

              Your horse should be able to walk 13 miles, unless it's a pasture potato.
              Go do some rides each week between and now and your trail ride date. 1 hour this week, 2 hours next week, 3 hours the next. And see how your horse does. Even if you don't have a trail to go out on, Do an hour around the arena where you keep him moving. Or two hours around the back 40 acres. This shoud give you an idea of whether 2-3-4 hours on the trail will be a problem.


              • #8
                I don't have any advice, but to start slowly and build up a little each day.
                That is what I do for regular trail riding.

                She is a cutie! I recognize her from a sales website I always check..
                MnToBe Twinkle Star: "Twinkie"

                Proud member of the "Don't rush to kill wildlife" clique!


                • Original Poster

                  Toirider - thanks for all the info! Definitely something to be concerned about. I have her on a high fat low carb grain with that in mind. If I decide to take her, I'll definitely pay attention to her "signals".

                  certified girl - Dixie is definitely a "go" girl - not herd bound, but likes to move out on our trail rides. But I've crossed paths with other trailriders before and wasn't phased in the least that they were going in the other direction.

                  Lieselotte - good tips - thanks!

                  Painted Horse - that's what I was thinking too - that I have time to build her up. We have lots of wonderful trails near our house, so no worries finding lots of places to go.

                  Huntertwo - thanks! Yup, that's where she came from!

                  Thanks for all the great advice everyone. Keep it coming!
                  I would like to think I will die an heroic death...

                  But it's more likely I'll trip over my dog and choke on a spoonful of frosting.


                  • #10
                    I definitely think she could handle that distance if you're walking. I mean, my spotted draft guy did it last fall when we went on a camping trip where it was longer than that each day. But we all took it pretty slow (as all the gaited horses passed us, LOL) and took our time and ended up being out for about five hours.

                    And definitely look into the high fat diet (though it seems you already are!). Generally, I think any draftie ought to be on it, it certainly can't hurt!
                    The Trials and Jubilations of a Twenty-Something Re-rider
                    Happy owner of Kieran the mostly-white-very-large-not-pony.


                    • #11
                      Thirteen miles isn't very far for a horse to go but what is the trail like?

                      There is the thirteen mile trail and then the THIRTEEN MILE TRAIL.
                      Lots of climbing makes a trail lots harder.
                      If it's a fairly flat trail then you should easily be ready in a month for the ride.
                      Have fun and don't go at your training all gung ho. That can do more damage
                      than good.
                      You know why cowboys don't like Appaloosas?" - Answer: Because to train a horse, you have to be smarter than it is.