Saturday, May 23, 2009

A new first...

I haven't been riding lately. I'm terrible, but I'm so busy. That's not usually an excuse, but I will be gone for 6 weeks this summer anyway, so I'm just not in the goal setting mood when I have only four weeks left until I'm gone! So he's just getting time off out in the pasture.

Today, however, we actually went out and did something! I trailered him out to the trails by the lake. So it was an entirely new place, and I took him with out the old mare, so two firsts. The trails were quite a bit more challenging than what we've done before, and I'm supposed to be hiking to condition for Mt Shasta, so I walked him! It worked out wonderfully! He has never been forced to walk behind me like this. The trail narrow enough that I couldn't have him next to me like he's used to, so he got lead endurance style, trailing along behind. Only problem is him watching how close he's getting! So after a few sudden stops to check if he was paying attention and a couple swats to his chest to back off, he got the idea. He only stepped on the back of my shoe once! By the end of the hike he even slowed down and fell in behind me when the trail started to narrow! Good smart horse!!!

We walked down to the lake and he stuck one foot in and his nose. I didn't ask for more since he was being brave and the footing wasn't great. Most of the lower trail was right along the lake. The boats were rocketing by with screaming kids on intertubes, and Bear would just casually stop to see what the fun was all about.

He had to cross a log that was HUGE. It would have made a great jump, but not at the end of a lead rope and certainly not on a cliff trail. He was great, I drove him over it in front of me in case he jumped, but he just stepped really high, one foot at a time, with no hesitation. I was so proud.

We had one horse pass us when we were heading back, she was heading out and ended up catching up and passing again on the way back. He was curious, but otherwise just fine with the other horse leaving him behind. I just feel so SO lucky to have such a steady personality on this horse. Its so easy!

So we got some great exposure and training in. We both got a workout, and it was just a fun day!

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