Email to Morgan: “I’m going trail riding tonight. Are you jealous?”
Yesterday evening, Zip took a trail ride–and so did I!
First, horse trainer Mike Trader worked Zip in front of his barn.
He’s had Zip for a week, doing groundwork exercises, teaching her respect. Last night was the first time she was saddled up at Soggy Bottom. (She’s not really in the cross ties here at this point, just standing behind them.)
He tested her in the ring.
Flexing her if she doesn’t do what she’s told.
Then he took her outside the ring, to the yard around the ring. Next, we all got on horseback (me on their horse Sierra, Mike’s wife Sheila on another of their horses) and Mike on Zip–and took to a pasture.
And she was so well-behaved! So he decided she was ready for the trail, and Zip and I took a lesson together, Zip being trained and tested on the trail, and me learning how to handle a horse on the trail.
I have to work on my trail riding photography because all my pictures look like this:
Me on Sierra, Mike on Zip:
We were out in the hills, up and down steep trails, through the woods, and out on wide-pathed easements for a couple of hours, stopping a few times to eat wild black raspberries. Zip did fantastic all the way, didn’t try to take off ever, didn’t care if she was in front or behind. She’s going to be a good trail horse. I loved trail riding and can’t wait to do this on my farm! If only I could sneak Sierra into the trailer when they bring Zip home…. I’m still not sure about Patriot, and Morgan and I can’t ride together unless we have another horse we can trust. I may send Patriot for training also, but I’m not sure I will ever trust him–at least on the trail–after seeing him buck Morgan.
I’m thinking about whether I deserve a big birthday present next year….because I am hooked!