Another ride on Gem with a small group (Jess and Deb). The first 20-30 minutes were a little tough as he was nervous and excited. Once he settled down though, he was awesome!! No bucking, so real silliness, he tried so hard and he did great. I felt myself relaxing and being much softer with the reins today. He seemed to respond in kind.
He did not want to lead today, which was so interesting! He did the best in the middle spot, so we stayed there. AFter a while, we tried the rear and he was great there. However, even after he'd settled into things, he didn't want to lead. Maybe he's allowing himelf to relax some and not so hard to be brave?
Anyway, we had a great ride and he worked up a good sweat. We'll keep going and see what we have after a few more rides. Near the end, we wandered off the trail to jump a few fallen logs. Surprisingly, he left the group with ease! Now, that's progress.
I didn't get on Z today, which means she's had 4 days of rest. We'll have to make up for that time somehow next week. I need to keep building her stamina. Maybe we Gem is ready, we can pony Z on some of our rides. Just gotta keep building. We're on a great track here.