Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Controlled Chaos

Yesterday was the day I should have taken off and taken J for a ride. The temps topped out at 72 with clear, bright blue skies and zero wind. Alas, the work schedule did not allow for such funness, so instead I went out after work. It is now light when I hit the barn, with the sun sinking behind the mountains and the light fading fast. I figure another month and I will be able to ride out across the street instead of staying in the indoor, if the weather is nice. Winter is beginning to fade, although we are expecting more snow on Saturday (the only day this week the weather is going to be bad).

Ashke and I in the indoor. His mane is finally long enough it is falling to the side.

I'm beginning to meet the people at this barn and the woman who boards her Connamara mare next to Ashke and I have been talking. She does a little bit of everything: jumps, dressages, trails, and is interested in doing WE. We were talking last night about having a barn play day (the barn owns all of the obstacles we need to put up a small course) for the boarders. She seems interested in trying it out and she was the one that told me all of the things they have we could use. I'm not sure the barn has the facilities to host outside riders, but at least we could do something for the boarders. I'm going to contact the owner and see if it was a possibility. 

Ashke was fairly settled last night. His spooking and shying at the far end of the arena has ceased, for the most part, and he dealt with the multitude of jumps, the jumping horses, the one year old playing in the dirt, the open garage door and the closing garage door. His only spook was at one of the riders pulling additional jumps out from behind the terrifying green-wall-of-death. I circled him (we were cantering) and let him inspect her work. Then he was fine.

We walked, trotted and cantered. I was doing the square exercise, where I ride the length of the wall to the corner, slow and walk around the corner than canter to the next corner, and Ashke got very up about the canter part. He was wanting to spin and jump into the canter. I stopped him and had him stand still in the corner, then do the exercise at a walk. I talked to C (Connamara mare) about him after our ride and she said you can't see any problems when I am riding. You can, however, hear the slight hesitation in the cadence of his walk. We rode for almost an hour and then put him away. He was a little bit sweaty at the girth area, but cool, so I brushed him for a few more minutes before leaving.

Overall, a decent ride with five other horses and multitude of distractions.

Also, Saiph's suggestion of giving him a little alfalfa while getting him ready has helped his girthing issue a lot. He is much less reactive now than he was two weeks ago.


  1. Lily used to do the same exact thing as Ashke with walk-canter and halt-canter transitions. Definitely twinkies! ;)

    SO glad the alfalfa recommendation has helped! :D