Thursday, March 14, 2013

Change of Scenery

We've been in pretty serious work mode lately but the weather over the past few days has been so beautiful that I could not resist a trail ride -- or two!

always ready for an adventure!
Kenny comes for a visit on his motorcycle...yes, it was that gorgeous out.

Yesterday it was almost 60 degrees and I decided it was as good a time as any to try a trail ride with Cairo, which we haven't done since late October of last year. It was kind of nervewracking because Cairo had been cooped up in the house due to the rain earlier in the week, and Kenny and I both worked a lot this week. So she was nuts, and Lucy of course was her usual perky self. Did I think to lunge her beforehand? Of course not.

Shortly after we got into the woods, a kid was playing basketball at the end of one of the residential streets that connects to the trails we use. I let Lucy stand and have a good long look at the basketball so she could see the movement and hear the noise. The kid was getting nice consistent baskets but of course (OF COURSE!) as soon as we started to actually walk past her, she threw the basketball and it hit the board behind the hoop with a loud metallic noise that scared the crap out of poor Lucy. At that very second, a jogger was trying to run past us on the trail, so that made things a bit worse. And Cairo thought this was all a very fun game and got so excited that she ran in circles, scooting around with a huge grin on her face.

As this all went down I sat up there in the saddle saying, "woah girl, woah...WOAH!" and bless her heart, Lucy held it together even after a few lofty maneuvers and no one died, not even the jogger.

And that was all within the first five minutes!!

As the ride went on, Lucy stopped prancing everywhere, Cairo stopped scooting around through the leaves like a deer on crack, and I stopped thinking I was going to eat dirt every two minutes. The last 20 minutes or so was very enjoyable and both girls had a nice time.

Cairo says, can you hurry it up? Lucy says, I'm trying!!!
Kate says, that's enough out of both of you!

Right before we arrived back at the barn, Lucy was doing her rude "I want to go faster and you're holding me back" head tossing and she managed to get the lunge line, aka the Equine Oh Shit Handle, up over her head and between her ears. She is just about the most ear-shy horse I have ever met and of course this sent her into a panic and she tried to run backward away from the lunge line. Unfortunately for her, it was stuck on her head so this was another time where I was sitting up there trying to calmly tell her to woah, not run the dog over, or fall off the little incline on either side of the trail, or get tossed. Once again, though, she panicked for a few seconds and then stood like a statue so I could reach forward and flip the lunge line off the side of her head.

Bottom line is that "woah" is a very handy tool to install on your horse.

once back at the barn, I tortured her a bit. she was not concerned about the rope on her ears.
good girl!

soaking up the warm sunshine and looking beautiful

Today I worked from home and on my lunch break, Maddy and I went for a little trail ride. After yesterday's glorious warmth and sun, today was a hard pill to swallow: 35 and windy....brrrr! Lucy did very well, though, and we had a lovely trek through the woods.

Back to "real" work tomorrow, both for me in the office and for Lucy in the ring!


  1. Sounds like a nice (relatively) uneventful ride. I think trail rides are good mental change of pace breaks for horses and riders :)

  2. Lucy is so, so pretty as always.

    The lunge line/ear mishap is the thing that gives me pause personally about that particular safety net. I think it's a great idea and works for you guys (and think it's the best possible solution given your past experiences) but I would be too nervous about me or the horse getting tangled up in it if something did happen. This is just a personal issue for me as I had a bad accident involving a rope getting around my neck.

  3. It's always good to take a break from work so you can relax, the stress will just eat away at you.

  4. It's good that everyone survived the trail ride. I bet the jogger was probably the most terrified of all!

  5. There's nothing like a trail ride with your favourite fuzzy friends. Hopefully 60 degree weather is on its way to being the norm again.

  6. Kate, I've never used mecate reins, but they are popular here in the West. People use them partly for the same reason you use your lunge line/Equine Oh Shit Handle, lol. They tuck the loose end into their belt loop in case they part with their horse out on the trail.

  7. She sure looks great....glad you had a nice ride...after those first 5 mins lol


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