Is there anything better than just flying down the trails on a good Tb???? No really there isn’t 🙂 I had to give Shoes another carrot early this morning with his breakfast for being such a good boy!
As Kurt and I were riding yesterday we talked about how lucky we are to have such nice trails close by our house. We not only do we have state owned land all around our farm that we can ride directly to but also this nice trail system that is a 5 min ride from the farm. The trails are so good for babies because they are long and straight with nice sand footing and closed in by woods. I prefer to take the greenies to a place that is off the farm and a bit closed in before I graduate to the open fields. The trails are nice and wide so you can ride side by side which is excellent for getting babies confident. Kurt and Junior act as a buffer zone that I can use to give the babies guidance.
Junior, my connemara/tb, is such an interesting horse and he still puzzles me with some of his antics. I have never met a horse who is so opinionated about the way people ride. I had an old friend come out to ride and put her on him thinking he will give her a nice easy ride. Ha, nope he was a nut job. Bucking, taking off and just out of sorts. No clue what the deal was but there are just some people who appear to be good riders but ride in a way that aggravates him. He can go from a puppy dog to a nut job in a matter of seconds and it always leaves me scratching my head trying to figure him out. Is it too much leg, too much hand, a hot seat or him just being annoyed by the rider. Some people just can’t ride sensitive horses is what I think it ultimately comes down to. Maybe it was the saddle..like I said he is opinionated and I really don’t have a clue. He likes to embarrass me!
This was crossing my mind yesterday as we went flying down the trails and Kurt had this huge smile plastered on his face and at one point I said that I was ready to trot and he looked over and said he had just gotten going and could we keep going 🙂 Rock on, Kurt! Somehow the horse who was bucking like a rodeo horse earlier in the week was flying down the trail on a loose rein just loving life. Junior is an interesting horse and perhaps a horse that only a mother can love and even at that sometimes I would like to strangle him. He has the most annoying habits in the world and his whinny is so ear-piercing it can make you want to throttle him when he screams and screams for whatever reason. He has so many bad habits and his ground manners are awful despite persistent corrections. Kurt and I overlook all these things because we both really like riding him. He is almost all TB (just 1/4 connemara which gives him all the annoying habits) and we compare him to a sports car.
I really enjoy foxhunting but this year I haven’t hunted much instead focusing on riding with Kurt on the weekends. Life is always a balancing act of keeping everyone happy and I have to find ways to spend time with Kurt while getting all the work done (training horses). He really enjoys a casual trail ride and wasn’t much on foxhunting so trail riding it is. It’s nice to get out and spend time enjoying nature and having good conversation. We always feel refreshed and happy when we get back even if he is sore and complains the next few days after a long ride 🙂
There really is something about a good trail ride that makes you appreciate your horse and this morning I am feeling a sense of accomplishment in regards to Shoes. I was talking with Suzanne who is retraining the CANTER horses in NC and she remarked that she tends to enjoy the more difficult horses (as does Allie). We laughed that perhaps we are all a bit messed up in the head but I really believe it’s that sense of pride you feel knowing where you started and perhaps it’s a bit of ego boosting that happens knowing you can ride a horse that perhaps isn’t all that easy and turn him into a horse that everyone wants?
It really does fill me with pride knowing that I started with this skinny upside down necked horse who had no concept of going forward or relaxing his back. He felt like riding an inverted pogo stick and he had zero confidence in himself. Now you get on and you feel a soft rideable horse who is working correctly over the back and using the energy for good things and not bad. We aren’t out of the woods yet in terms of his occasional bouts of attitude but I really think I’m on the upswing of getting him to focus on being good and not bad. My head does get a bit big when I go for a lesson and hear that he is fancy and that he looks very light and soft. We all need to hear that we have done a good job and that someone else appreciates the horse that we have put so much time and effort into. I’m in a happy mood today and looking forward to continued adventures with Shoes.