Friday, August 31, 2012

Rained out ride with friend turns into ride close to home...

I was loaded up and out the driveway at 6:00 a.m. to meet a couple friends to ride @ 9:00 a.m.  We were all excited because it would have been their two mustangs first long trail ride away from home, and it would be at a place I had never been to.  Problemo?  Yep!  It was pouring down rain the direction we were supposed to ride, and the trails are dirt so when it rains, no riding on them.  I made it almost half way there and got a call letting me know the trails were I headed to Rudolf Bennit Wildlife area close to our house.  We had a light rain shower and the trails are usually good, plus I was already loaded up, so why not?

What a beautiful cool temperature morning!  It was just Tripp and I, which surprised me!  It was a weekend so I figured there would have been horse campers out there.  Yay!  Just us!

Tripp is saddled up and ready to go!  Woo hoo!!!

The plan was to take the route around the shooting range, then take the other big trail around the lake.  Great plans sometimes have a speed bump attached to them.  We started out okay but then I noticed Tripp was trying to stay on the wet leaves.  After his last ouchy episode I have been watching his trims closely.  It was not as bad as last time but I could tell he was still ouchy.  I tried to get past the rougher spot, then decided to turn around and head back.  I was frustrated because all looked good when we left the parking lot. 

Some of you know we have had issues with Tripp stopping to eat on the trail.  It is beyond being a small problem.  When I was riding him back we stayed on the edge of the trail that had grass.  Sure enough...he dove in to the grass!  So I did the "Let's work your buttsky off" routine.  Part of the ground was uneven and I knew that we just might practice our 'tumbling' in addition to working that buttsky off. 

As we were walking along he dove in and I started to work him in circles and serpentines.  He tripped in a small ditch but I was prepared for it.  He went down to his knees, which we have done before, and instead of fighting to get back to his feet like he normally does, HE STAYS ON HIS KNEES AND PROCEEDS TO EAT LIKE HE HAD JUST WON FREE TICKETS TO THE BUFFET!  No joke!  So I did something I have never done before (especially since I have been working with my scaredy cat issues)....I popped him on the butt with the end of the mecate rein.  Yee Haw!  He jumped up in the air (I had already prepared for this too...but still didn't like it one bit!  ACK!) and I spun him around.  He tried a couple of more times and when he did not listen to me, I popped him again.  After that he was so jumpy and it just was not pleasant to be on him.  I was so glad we were almost to the parking lot.
We were on the last bit of the trail before the parking lot, and by now he has realized that the girl on his back is not the same girl who is usually on his back!  WHO IS SHE AND WHAT HAS SHE DONE WITH MY GIRL????  We stood next to some plants so I could get pictures of the water drops on the leaves...and he didn't even look at the branches!  Whew!  He was getting it.  I know I have to keep working on this and being more assertive for this to get better.  I am also trying to find out what will make our rides that include lots of grass more pleasant for both of us.  The trail ride I took a couple weeks after this one worked out well...I got to the parking lot early so took him for a walk, we did some ground work and he did NOT get to eat.  Then we walked back to the parking lot and when he relaxed, I took him to a spot and let him eat.  Everyone else showed up and we prepared for our ride and headed out.  It was a very pleasant ride!  Yay!


After getting pictures of the water drops we headed towards the parking lot, and here come two big gaited horses heads a bobbin' along!  The older guy in the lead was not very friendly but the gal with him was.  Just wanted to share a smile and good morning...nothing more.  :-)

Then we got to the parking lot and we had company!  These two rigs were together and I had to laugh when the lady who owned a couple of the horses told another gal who had not ridden in a while "You forgot your helmet.  You better not fall off!"  She was also about 5 ft tall on a very tall horse!  I smiled to myself...we didn't chat but I enjoyed watching them get ready to go and wished I was headed back out.

About that time a couple of other riders came from the same direction I was, and they continued on the trail towards the lake.  They were both full of smiles and enjoying their time with their horses. 

Tripp is so awesome when he sees other horses.  Every once in a while he will give a whinny to someone, but not very often.  Usually he answers then he is done. 

Now, to the feet!  What I found was a bunch of sharp little rocks in the crevice of his frogs on the front hooves.  No wonder he was not comfortable!  I have not had problems like that before, and just didn't think about it.  I figured since the trails were wet the footing would be good for him.  Lesson learned!  I also need to treat him for thrush.  Dang, that is nasty stuff!  Doesn't matter if it is a little or a lot - it is icky and makes for unhappy hooves.

I will say it was not one of the most pleasant rides I have had with Tripp, but like the sign says "A bad day riding is better than a good day at work!"  :-)

Until later....Karen and Tripp who still believes his 'girl' is an imposter.

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