Friday night I went out to the barn and rode some in the indoor arena. Ashke loved being groomed and left several pounds of hair on the floor. Boy thinks it's spring. Of course, we had rain on Saturday night, so he's probably not far off.
When we got to the arena, there was no one else there. I took the reins off his bridle and turned him loose. He galloped around the arena like a complete fool. I was moving poles out into the middle of the arena for him to move over cavelletti. He galloped around me, snorting and kicking out. In his defense, he hadn't been worked in a week. Unfortunately, I think because he was acting the fool without our typical warm up, he strained his right hamstring. You can't see it or hear it when he walks, but I can feel it when I'm on him. On Friday night, he wasn't real excited about the cavaletti or the 18" raised pole I asked him to step over. I'm now thinking lifting his feet that high and kind of jumping over the pole may be putting additional strain on his hamstring.
On Saturday, Nicole and I rode out onto the Mesa. This time we rode to the left around the Mesa. It was very new and got pretty scarey for both horses and riders. Nicole had to get off a couple of times. The first time was because of the horses working in the arena of someone's house (why in the world are unknown horses so scarey?) and the second was due to an ass on a mountain bike who thought it would be a good idea to ride up Cali's butt. We didn't get very far. First, it was incredibly rocky and second, it was very steep. Nicole and I are both kind of afraid of heights, so we were both really nervous about the drop off to our left. On top of that, the trail goes up and tops off and the closer we got to the top the more nervous I got about some idiot on a bike flying down the mountain (happens alot) at forty miles an hour and no one having any place to go. It was good that we turned around when we did, because the ass on the bike flew up behind us just after we left the steep, narrow part of the trail.
We went back around to the right and followed are normal path back to the barn. After fighting the rocks, we didn't ride very far. I think both Nicole and I are ready to move farther on the path around the mesa to the right. We are talking about trying to get to the top of the mesa on next Sunday, before the Super Bowl.
Not a lot of mileage, but definitely some descent elevation.
The day ended happy for Ashke, however.
He loves his bran mash with carrots. He will lean out of his stall and whinny at me while I'm getting it ready. He prefers it just a little on the dry side, all wet through, but not mushy.
On Sunday, Nicole and I decided to ride the Van Bibber Creek trail to the South instead of north.
Cali decided to test Nicole's resolve and act like a toddler before we got on the trail.
There was a lot of kicking and squeeling and bucking and rearing.
The temper tantrum lasted about fifteen minutes.
Ashke was not real impressed.
We hand walked the horses to the trail head and then mounted up.
It was a pretty decent trail and we did walking, trotting and a couple of canters.
Cali settled right in, once her little fit was over.
The path was a little rocky and I think Ashke was a little sore on his right hind, because of the hamstring. Nicole said she couldn't see it, but I could feel it. Especially on the way back when he was tired.
We went along the canal until it deadended behind someone's house. At least the pathway did. The canal went underground at that point. We almost reached Hwy 58.
We met some idiot bike riders, and some polite bike riders. We met some people with their dogs on leashes and some people with their dogs off leash. Jokingly, I told Nicole I was going to teach Ashke to kick at anyone who got to close to his hind end on their bike. Ashke must have understood because he started to pin his ears and swish his tail at the bikers when they went blazing by. Cracked me up. (And for the record, I would not teach my horse to kick. That would be really stupid. Really.)
The temperature was perfect and it couldn't have been a better day. Both Nicole and I were a bit sore when we got off to hand walk them back to the barn. It was a longer ride than we have done in the past and I was giddy with happiness at the ride.
Almost seven miles. And the time is a bit misleading since I started the app when I was sitting on the log waiting for Cali to chill. I figure we did the seven miles in about an hour and forty-five minutes.
One of the best parts of the day was knowing we had ridden half of a LD.
And Cinnamon gave us some new trail ideas for our next ride, although on Sunday I'm pretty sure we are going to tackle the top of the mesa.