Over Labor Day weekend, J, T and I went camping with N, J and R. A great time was had by all, with much laughter, rock climbing, hiking, archery, biking for the boys, and some awesome food. We came back on Sunday, which left Monday for N and I to ride.
We both wanted to trail ride, but couldn't manage it, so we played around in the big arena. We decided to put out four cavaletti poles and after we were warmed up and the horses were doing well, we pulled out the bending poles.
For the first time, Ashke did awesome over the caveletti poles. We had them spaced for trotting and after the first couple of times through, Ashke popped through them and came out the other side at a sweet canter. He does get scattered on the length of the arena, as he is still having issues with keeping himself collected, but I can't complain, since he went through the poles so well. I'm beginning to see improvements every time we ride.
N said that Cali seemed so much more interested today in doing her work because we were changing it up with the trot poles. Ashke too, seemed to enjoy the arena work much better than the last time we were out, and he seemed genuinely excited when we pulled out the bending poles.
I tried to explain to N what the pole pattern was, but she didn't get it. She cantered around the outside of the arena, then trotted through the poles from the far end of the arena to where we were, but didn't turn around and bend back through them. Cali thought it was great fun and picked up the canter. N decided to let her try them at the canter and we were both amazed and in awe at the flying lead changes Cali picked up everytime they changed direction.
Ashke and I did the pattern correct but he didn't do the flying lead changes. He stayed on his left lead the entire trip, but we did manage to canter through them this time, which was a change from the last time we tried the poles. N tried one more pattern and Cali did another flying lead change, but it was obvious she was getting tired. It was almost 95 out, which means we were done. We walked them out and then put the stuff away. A cold rinse later and they were back in their stalls with carrots.