Took Kyle with me to Hidden Mesa for a nice evening ride. Kyle's kind of a trail snob - he'll only ride with me if I trailer somewhere. HA! So we brought Cowboy and Rain. First of all, Cowboy's trailer loading lessons truly paid off. He was confident and comfortable with the panels and staying in the trailer. I was so pleased!!
We tacked them up before we loaded so we could get there, get on and go. So, I found some important holes in Cowboy's understanding of "how to be a mount". I had to kind of laugh at myself for all the training we haven't done yet and what I've glossed over. He doesn't really know how to yield the hind or the fore from the saddle. Subsequently, he has no idea how to go sideways or half-pass. Those are handy, handy tools when you have a horse that is more impulsive than you want. Well, I wouldn't call Cowboy an impulsive horse, but there were moments where he wanted to trot and I was asking for a walk. Next lesson, we get those things going!
Then, he seemed to be tender footed on the rocks. That surprised me since he has great, solid feet. I've noticed that since having him here with me, he doesn't walk well on my gravel driveway. I truly need to get some gravel in my track! At one point, he seemed super sore and I hopped off to check and found a big rock lodged in his hoof. Poor guy - he needs to toughen up those soles. I'll add gravel this week.
He crossed water just fine - I figured he would. He walks soooooo slow. OMG. I'm going to try to find a faster walk in him. Also, our down transitions were not so good on the way back. He got more impulsive going home, as all horses tend to do, but he immediately got bracey as well. We'll be focusing more and more on getting rid of the brace. He's got a lot of built-in brace for us to get through.
It was a great ride, good time with Kyle, and a great test of what we've built and where Cowboy and I are headed. I needed it to remind me of all the things we have to fix up if I'm going to use him for L3.
This weekend: trimming hooves. Everyone needs a touch up.