Sunday, February 25, 2018

7.5 miles on Saturday!

I'll get the video in a separate post, but I finally trailered out this year! And boy was that an adventure... Ahem.

In short, I do not trust Gwyn to load without some form of protest at home. And lately it's been minor protest that happens once and then she self loads with a point and a 'STEP!'. Before her antics would result in me losing the lead rope and then she'd go gallivanting across the property, sending Saffron into a tizzy that would only exacerbate matters.  I've remedied that by creating a pen around the horse trailer to keep her contained.

Saturday was not that kind of day. I should have figured something was up when she saw me coming and went tearing through the pasture while bucking. I got the pen set up and loaded my stuff into the trailer then grabbed Gwyn and pulled her sheet off and took her out to my mini pen and let her graze while I curried her and took out her mud knot.

Shedding season has commenced. Thank FSM.

FLOOFY! Note: I'm not sure I'll do the mud knot again? I'm a more low maintenance horse owner and banging it off a bit high and letting it grow should be fine. This horse does not lack for hair.

Acting all sweet like she wasn't plotting how to get out of getting on the trailer.
I went to load her and she just.. was not having it. She tore away and started bucking and leaping in this SUPER TINY about the size of a round pen area. I caught her, tried loading again, she tore away and went bucking everywhere and then wouldn't let me catch her. She finally went back into the barn (lol) where I snagged her, grabbed a lunge whip and took her to the arena.

Because if assface wants to run all over the place she's gonna effin' RUN.  And I didn't let her break to walk until I was good and ready and she was ready to stand because DAMMIT I control her feet.

She will do this trot under saddle. It's... fun.

Gwyn. Your feet. What. 


Gwyn, your feet, again. What.
So, I made her do that for a while. Then I stopped her and she was just HEAVING and out of breath and I calmly walked up, reattached her lead and walked her to the trailer (with a stop for a drink of water because I'm not THAT mean) and pointed her at it. She thought about it, I clucked and said "Step UP" and on she went and just stood while I put up the butt bar.


I made sure I had a cooler and we pulled out to make the ridiculously short drive to the trailhead for the ride. (5 mins) She unloaded calmly, looked around, and stood nicely at the trailer while I cactus clothed the sweat she already had, lol, and tacked up.

I'm not a monster tho so she got a back on track blanket so her muscles would stay nice and warm after her lovely warm up HAHAHAHAHA

OH! And the first ride using the gift I got in the blogger gift exchange! I'm a fan of the water bottle holders! Plus that saddle pad I made is still going strong. *flex*

Still loving that quick change bridle too. Need to make my purple rope halter. I've got enough paracord....
She was quite nice for mounting, and I finally got hte hang of using my grab strap for mounting so it was quite smooth. I also lowered my stirrups a hole which I think I'll keep for endurance stuff. I felt much more secure with the longer leg. Because it's been so wet lately I didn't want to ride through the grass of the park and leave divots so we took the road as I'm not sure the new connector trail is ready for horses yet. The first bridge I can see from the parking lot still only has one railing and it's bloody narrow.

As soon as we hit the road I heard a vehicle approaching us from behind. Okay, yet another one of Gwyn's hang ups. I waved at the driver and turned Gwyn to face the truck. They were quite polite and slowed down. Gwyn was fine.

WTF Mare?!

We didn't see any other cars before reaching the trail itself, which is non-motorized traffic only. After that it was great aside from me feeling REALLY bad about my memory of how large the gravel is on the trail. (larger than I remembered).  We did not have a lot of stretches where I felt Gwyn was comfortable enough moving out on the rocks. I'm still waiting on my Megasus, but with some worrisome cracks in her hooves I've decided to order either Scoot Boots or Renegades. They're basically two shoeing cycles cost wise but will last WAY longer for me than iron shoes. Anyway.

I headed north on the trail toward town. I got there faster than I remembered the trail being long (though to be fair, the last time I rode it I was pregnant and just walked) and decided that I was going to bite the bullet and cross north of town to explore new trail and to see how Gwyn was doing. She had been pretty level headed (Huh, guess 10 minutes of constant trot/canter work will do that) the whole time I was on her so I didn't think it would be an issue. It wasn't.

The trail north of town had NO gravel and was actually very wet in places. The complete opposite of what we had just down. I went a mile north of town to the next road crossing and turned back at that point. At that road it would have been faster to just ride home than go back to the trailer, lol.

Coming back to the main road in town.

It feels weird riding through that park across the street even though it's part of the trail. It's just really nice, lol.

We had to wait for lots of cars before it was clear to cross and she was SO good. No dancing around, just waiting patiently. We got lots of waves. :D 

Happy Goober Mare Ears

Happy Me!  It was above freezing and not windy. I didn't need a neckwarmer or gloves! 

Bridge crossing!
We got back to the road that we entered the trail on and I took Gwyn further south to the next road before turning back. This is where we encountered REALLY bad gravel and the tire pile of doom. I also tried to get her into the stream to drink but she wasn't a fan of the footing and I was letting her make that choice.

Then it was cooler time and some grazing!

We got back with everything intact. I wore my new ovation winter paddock boots that I thought didn't fit but do and I'm really not a fan of them for long periods in the saddle. I think for the occasional 30 minute ride it would be fine, but several hours is just not feasible. My foot was sliding around too much, especially my right one and I couldn't get secure purchase even though the outer boot was definitely not moving in the stirrup. It was causing me a lot of pain in my calf trying to compensate. My left foot/calf was fine.

All in all it was a very fine day for a ride!

Also, slower than I wanted but I blame boot complications and the gravel. I like to aim for an average 10 min/mile. But, this is early season, so I'll give it a pass :) 


  1. What a punk at home. Hopefully she learned her lesson that getting in the trailer is way easier. I’m interested to see your experience with the Megasus runners. I almost joined the Kickstarter for those way back when it first launched but by that point I was done messing with Gem’s hoofwear and was happy in steel. Now she is barefoot again and happier.

    1. I'm a little grumpy because at this point I need something NOW and I was promised these a year ago (never trust delivery dates of companies on Kickstarter...) so I'm probably gonna grab a pair of scoot boots now too.

  2. You know, I feel guilty for not doing any kind of mud/tail maintenance so it's kind of a relief to hear you say you're not sure you'll bother with the knot again. My horses don't exactly lack hair either...

    1. Well, I'm a set it and forget it kind of person. And I was under the impression that you could do this and it would just be fine until you were ready to take it out. I haven't redone that knot.

      But then in the LJ group they said they've seen horses tails just rot after getting wet and I panicked because that thing has probably gotten wet!

      (It was fine, obviously) I did have a moment of adrenaline though because all the hair that never got brushed or normally pulled out in the course of a day or week came out allllll at once and I really thought I had destroyed her entire tail.

      It was nice to not have to worry about it getting all crusty with mud, but a simple braid and dunk will likely be my go to for now.