Monday, November 22, 2010

Double Ride Day

I was in my office working around 10:00 when the sun came out. I looked out the window and realized it was a lovely, cloudy fall day and also it was surprisingly warm. I decided to play hookie for a bit, particularly since we still needed to try Steen's blanket on Bear to make sure we replace the too-small one with the right size.

Beyond trying the blanket on Bear, I didn't have any concrete plans. When I walked up to the pasture gate, both Bear and Steen were close by. Bear walked up to say hi, so I put the halter on him and took him indoors. I then proceeded to try Steen's blanket on him, which fits him just like it fits Steen - almost but not quite too big.

I then took the blanket back off and groomed him. He was being really quiet and sweet so I thought I might as well ride him a bit, but I neglected to bring riding boots out with me and was wearing boots with tread, so had to go bareback.

Bear let me mount off a stepping ladder without protest. He was then quite good while we worked at the walk for 15 minutes to warm him up. Then I decided to see what his trot is like. It's definitely not as smooth as Steen's, but it's not bad. However, being bareback I decided just to let him cruise. He then proceeded to trot in circles by the door for quite a while. I was ok with this, and he did relax as we kept it up, but soon another horse and rider were ready to enter the arena and I didn't feel like trying to steer and sit his bouncy trot bareback. So, I cooled him down and hopped off. Then I gave him a little snack and took him back outside.

I hadn't fully decided whether or not to ride Steen because I didn't feel like dealing with the kind of nervy antics he's been displaying that couple of times I've had him inside, but he met me at the gate when I put Bear back out so I took him inside. He then stood quietly while I groomed him, so I put his bridle on and took him into the arena. He proceeded to be almost totally awesome. After I mounted I spent a minute marveling at how different he and Bear feel just in the way they move. I like Bear a lot, but he's still new to me. Steen is familiar and when he's behaving, he's really relaxing to ride. I had a nice time on him. The only wrinkle was a certain inclination to crow-hop repeatedly when he was supposed to be loping. This is something we will work on the next time I have a saddle on him. :)

So, it was a fun, super long day at the barn.

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