Finding the groove again

I have a feeling that I am going to be very thankful for Count Truckee coming into my life at this moment. When all hell broke loose in my life, I was left with a few horses and the one that I had to ride was Crazy as Can Be. Crazy loved trail riding but the ring stuff wasn’t his thing. I was pretty miserable and not feeling like dealing with his attitude. He wasn’t fun for me to ride and we made the best decision to move him into another job.  He has been hunting with his new owner in Georgia and is doing really well!

I really wanted to bring a horse over that enjoyed ring work because during the winter you don’t get as much opportunity to get out of the ring due to hunting at all of our local trail spots.

The weather has made riding tough and Truckee and I have been experiencing some ups and downs. It would be easy to be frustrated with him but I always remember that basically this horse lived in a field untouched for a year! He is feral in some ways and I have to remember it is an adjustment. One of his issues is that he is a bit attached and it causes him to forget that he has a job to do.

I am often alone on the farm and riding a young green horse alone isn’t wise. I pick my moments to ride when people are around. Sunday he got a nice lunging session with the vienna reins and he was excellent. Monday I brought him out and he was geared up. I could barely hook up the lunge equipment. I had him tacked up intending to ride but it was clear that wasn’t going to be in the cards. He was doing VERY impressive moves that looked like a rodeo horse coming out of the chute. He just wanted to run to the gate and couldn’t focus. Amanda brought her horse out and things went downhill from there. It was clear that Truckee and I needed to have a bit of a pow wow.

I took him over to the small lunge ring and worked on a small circle and he was wild. Absolutely wild not listening to a thing but I just patiently waited him out. Worked on introducing the voice commands and some transitions. Just walking and trotting but getting him to listen. It is a bit of tough love a times when he isn’t listening but he has to learn that I am the boss. I lunged him all over that ring. Then when he was nice and quiet I took him back to the big ring and lunged him all over that ring as well. Just making a point that he will come out and go to work and we won’t continue to play around.

I was bummed when I got rained out the next day..this is the issue because the weather keeps blocking my progress. Wednesday was a gorgeous night so I tacked him up and hoped somebody would show up at the barn but I was sure I was riding anyway. He started out lunging in the big ring very quietly with his vienna reins on. He remembered the transitions. He still is a bit of a bronc at the canter but that is just lack of balance. He was really soft and stretching into the contact. His back was relaxed and his brain was focused. Thankfully, just as I was going to get on Amanda came in so I had her hold him for a second and up I went. I could immediately tell he was relaxed. We walked around for a good 10 min just working on some simple moving off the leg and bending exercises. Wow, what a difference in the way he felt in the contact already!

He felt great at the trot and while a bit fussy when I was asking for him to take a bit of the contact he still felt amazing. He is a lovely mover and just has a great hind leg. He was so rideable and soft in the body. I was just beaming. I had forgotten just how much I LOVED what I do. I mean I know that I love it but I hadn’t been loving it for a while. Even before the drama in my life, I had taken on too much and gotten too busy. It takes the fun out of riding. I have a better plan on moving forward but I just couldn’t stop smiling during this ride on Truckee. I kept thinking to myself that this is why I do this and how rewarding it truly is to work with these horses. I finished up with him and just hung out a bit in the ring while Amanda rode. Truckee and I jumped some jumps in hand and he thought that was pretty cool. Can’t wait to do some jumping this weekend!

I then brought Junior out and had a great ride. I have been riding him a few days a week and having a blast. He is a pretty cool horse 🙂 I mean duh..I trained him and he’s awesome but talk about how nice it is to go from green to made. It’s like all the buttons are installed. Fun stuff!

Truckee and I had a light lunge session yesterday and I hope to get a ride in today. I also know that I am returning to my former self when I found myself buying a horse 🙂 More details to come on that but it is actually a CANTER horse that I retrained and sold. He is 9yrs old and mainly has been a western trail horse but he is the quiet all around type that everybody is looking for and his owner just finds herself focusing on other things in life at the moment. I’m excited about getting him. He should be an easy sale.

I really can’t wait to get more pics and video of Truckee this weekend to show off. The difference is amazing! I now need to clip him..uh my least favorite task.

I have been doing some dating and have been seeing somebody for a bit who is pretty awesome. He came to fix the pipes in the barn during the cold and get the tractor running. He is going with me to go pick up the new horse and while he isn’t a horse person, he knows farm equipment and farms which is pretty cool 🙂 It was fun to hear that he found one of my most attractive qualities to be the passion that I have for what I do. With or without a man in my life, I am just happy. It has taken a while to get back on track but I feel my old self starting to come back in full force. Please hide my checkbook…we all know the old self likes to buy horses at the drop of a hat 🙂

Allie and I also talked about me bringing over Money for Love (the cool grey horse) so I just need to see how much I can fit into my schedule. I am feeling energized but I am going to try to do better at work vs personal life balance. I might hold off one more month just to get through the worst of winter.

The journey has been rough but I find myself constantly smiling and laughing. I laugh more now than I have in a very long time. I can’t wait to get out to the barn to ride. I think that horses have always had the ability to heal if you let them. It took some time for me to find my way back but now every time I work with a horse it truly feels like it is healing me from the inside out.

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5 responses to “Finding the groove again

  1. Fantastic. I hope to be a successful a rider and general equestrian as you one day soon. 🙂

  2. I think it’s too bad that many people feel the groundwork is just something to get done so they can ride and that attitude can follow from a lack of respect for the horse’s state of mind. Groundwork can be an art in itself if it is done with creativity, respect, and knowledge. It can greatly improve the relationship between horse and handler/rider. It is a safer to way to iron out any problems and understand the importance of body language, phases of asking, reading the horse, and seeing how the horse is going.

    • It really is and more people should use it! I find it essential to have a horse that really understands that lunging is working not play time. It gives you great insight into how a horse thinks and also teaches a horse how to respect your cues.

  3. You go girl!

  4. ‘,,, but I find myself constantly smiling and laughing’ Yes!

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