Thursday, May 26, 2011

12 miles solo

I loved my time with Gem and Z today. I hauled them over to Indian Creek and we rode for 4 hours. I did about 2 hours on each horse. Because the trail is so lightly used right now (weekday, equine virus outbreak, following heavy rains), I didn't use a lead to pony the other horse. It's really fun just letting the other horse follow along. I started on Z and we moved out pretty well, covering about 6 miles. Then, I switched to Gem and we went further down the trail. He was a little worried at first, which was so interesting because we'd been trail riding for 2 hours already. The change from following along to having a rider was quite a transition for him. I really think this is the baggage he and I are constantly working through - someone pushed him too hard before he came to me. At first, he was afraid to go forward, so I backed him up. Then I'd ask for forward. I took my time and backed him every time he was unable to go forward. Amazingly, he slowly let the concern fade and he was just fine in about 20 minutes. I ended up riding him for about 2 hours with Z following behind.

A great conditioning ride for Z and a good stretch for Gem as a trail horse. We went about 12 miles with a lot of climbing and descending - mountain riding at it's finest. Loved it and doing it alone was especially nice.

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