Sunday, December 19, 2010

two great rides and I violated the 40 degree rule...

I had a good ride yesterday and survived riding in the cold.  It was 36 degrees, but the sun was out in full force - that makes such a difference especially at this altitude - AND I put some foot heaters in my boots.  I am so miserable when my feet get cold.  Warm feet and I can handle the colder temps. 
I tried the snaffle on Nina, overall she was very good and I liked the way she was carrying herself better in it.  There were a couple of minutes where she grabbed it and started to take off, leaving me thinking 'oh...this is not a good idea'  but she was fine.  I think this bit will be a step up for her.  She did throw a bit of a temper tantrum before I got on, her ground manners seem to be optional when it is cold, have to work on that.

Today it was nice and warm which meant chaos in the arena so I put the gag back on her and had a great ride.  When I get frustrated because progress seems so slow I have to remember that this horse did not want to WALK a year ago and today she was doing halt to trot transitions with no head flinging, moving strongly off of her rear for a big first stride and happy to do it.   We also worked a little on whoa.  She has a nasty habit of grabbing the bit as she stops and rooting hard, trying to pull you loose.  I have been trying several different things to work on this, the main one being that I remember to use my body and not my hands to halt.  I got several nice balanced stops from a trot with no rooting and decided that was well done and called it a day.  I am very happy with her.  And my timing in getting off was good because about 10 minutes later a horse being led by a very small child (don't ask, I will sidetrack into a full blown screaming rant) got loose and went tearing around the arena, scattering the other horses like chickens.   Happy not to be in there too.


  1. Sounds like you and Nina are getting tuned in to each other. Nice! :)

  2. That whole grab the bit in the mouth and take off is really frustrating. That, combined with the 'throw my nose straight up and not look where I'm going' is what ended Arty's lesson (and almost his trail) career. He's perfectly happy in a rubber coated Dee ring snaffle now though. Hope it works well for Nina, and best of luck! It sounds like she'll do marvelously.

    P.S. Post some new videos of her!


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