Sunday, February 20, 2011

First Walkabout of 2011

It was a beautiful, sunny day with temps in the high 70sF. I decided to take Jaz out to see how Daltrey did by himself. I gave him a scoop of feed to distract him so he wouldn't follow us to the gate. Mr. Fry said he squawled and ran around a little, but he settled down pretty quickly. If he heard him, Jaz did not react.

Jaz has weathered the winter well — that is to say he's fat — so I only took him about half the distance we normally go. We're both out of shape, but every step was perfect. Jaz never flinched at the barking dogs or anything else. Heather used my saddle last, and she shortened the stirrups. I lengthened them, but took them up a notch higher than I had been. What a difference! I felt so much more secure in my seat while trotting. In the photos, I can see my alignment is much better.

Mr. Fry took these pix after we got back, and I have a bad case of helmet hair, but I bet none of you looks any better after a ride, so I don't mind. Hell, it is what it is.

Note to self: saddle needs to come a little forward next time.

It was later than I thought when we got back, so rather than head to Iron Ridge, I took Daltrey on a very short walkabout. Babies! He was a little scary. I was having a hard time keeping him in position behind and slightly to the side of me. He was anxious (as in nervous) and wanting to run out ahead of me. It didn't help that Jaz was carrying on. We did the whole walk going in circles so I could keep him (and me!) in a safe place. At one point, he leaped forward and bucked while only about half a lead's distance from me. I felt the air move beside my right ear. Had I been in a safe position to react quickly, he'd have really gotten it for that. As it was, I had to let it go, because he would not have know what he was being punished for. When I drew him back in, he leaned in and grabbed my arm with his lips. I was close enough to be able to pop him on the shoulder in a timely manner for that.

Note to self: wear a helmet next time I do ANYTHING with him. Carry a dressage whip (longer) rather than a crop so I don't need to be so close to administer a punishment.

Today I'm headed to the farm to see my barn buddies and my psycho gelding, who is making Heather earn her training fee. Haven't decided if I will take Jaz or ride one of theirs. Not a good idea for me to get on Poco just yet. He's not worn out enough yet to stop fighting.

Hope you're all having a great weekend that includes horses.


Jeni said...

great ride on Jaz !! I don't even take my helmet off for mounted pictures on Rosie. Nope Nope Nope!

Wearing a helmet while working with D is a good idea. From experience you are going to want to get that leading thing down pat sooner than later. He's only going to get bigger and pushier. You don't want to end up with a Rosie. Her first owner never taught good leading and respect of space. Trying to convince a 2000 lb horse that my space is not her space is very challenging.

Fantastyk Voyager said...

Sounds like a great day. Glad to hear that Daltry doesn't mind too much about being left behind. Yeah, helmet around the baby = good idea. You just never know. Many of the worst horse injuries come from the little ones.

Sir Darby said...

Sounds like a successful day.

Laura said...

Sounds like you had a great ride on Jaz! I hear ya about the helmet hair - not much you can do about it though!

Too bad D was a bit nervous - sounds like a helmet is a good idea when working with him. I'm sure you'll have him calm and responsive soon with all of your training...

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

Oh my! The kicking behavior made my heart race....been there, done that! Scary! You're very lucky. Yes! helmet and dressage whip. whew!

I'm glad you had a calm ride on Jaz, though :)


Unknown said...

Woo hoo, reminds me of Magico at our barn. He was 14 hands when he was 7 months old and it was definitely baby huey!

I was much more cautious around him than the huge TWH because he was convinced we were all horses. Keep that helmet on. And Helmet hair is in these days.

Okay. Not really. But concussions are really out of fashion.

Chelsi said...

Isnt it wonderful to see the light at the end of the (winter) tunnel? Those first rides after the "off" period are always the hardest. It will get better from here!

Rising Rainbow said...

I don't always wear a helmet when I ride. I know, I know. I just have not gotten myself into the routine but I always wear a hat so I have hat hair. I avoid cameras at all costs.

I have thought about wearing a helmet for ground work with a couple of my colts. I know the people who teach the reproduction classes at Colorado State always wear helmets for that. Makes sense if you think you might get struck.

I wondered how Poco was doing with this reeducation but then seems like I recall he's had some time off because of weather. Is that right??

Hopeful said...

glad you had a good ride! hey, who cares if you have helmet hair! and, you're in a t shirt while riding so you must have been thrilled! keep having fun. be safe.

Leah Fry said...

I always wear a helmet when I ride because I feel compelled to protect the few brain cells I have that survived my misspent youth. But that hoof whizzing by my ear was not cool. I don't care how dumb it looks, I'll be wearing a helmet around that baby.

Poco's program was delayed by almost 2 weeks because of the weather and the resulting mud. He's been wearing Heather out, that's for sure. He's bored and frustrated with me using him as a packer, which he is not. She's been doing dressage with him and he seems to enjoy the challenge, once she rides out the attitude.

Crystal said...

Glad you had a good ride on Jazz! Have you thought of ponying baby D? Might be fun after he gets better at leading.

Desert Rose said...

great got alot accomplished!!!

Leah Fry said...

Crystal, it's not safe to pony on our road. It's narrow, winding, and in places drops off sharply into deep drainage ditches. To top it off, some of my lovely neighbors seem to either have no courtesy or no sense when driving past a rider. I will likely take him up to the farm and try ponying there.

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