Friday, March 16, 2012

Lions and Tigers and CHICKENS... Oh, My!

Yesterday, I rode Winston for the first time in a week.  I had a nasty cold at the beginning of the week (everybody seems to have it here) and my work schedule conspired to keep me out of the arena.  In a few months it will be light early enough for me to easily ride before work.  But right now it's difficult.

Winston was full of energy.  He was having trouble with focus and work.  He wanted to go-go-go; except in the arena corner closest to the chicken pen.  I'm not sure if it was the breeze in the pine trees there or the chickens, but he spooked every time we got close to it.  We did manage to get some nice work but it was very hit and miss.  He was a bit resistant, a bit high-headed, a bit hoppy in the canter and forward on the verge of run-away.  I was able to contain him using my seat but my abs were aching when we finished.  At one point, as we cantered three or four 20 meter circles at mach 3 while I tried to get a downward transition from my seat, I thought to myself:  Not very long ago a ride like this would have scared the cr*p out of me.

When he was good, he was very good. 

Even at trot, we were flying.  Look at his tail!

We did some circles down by the chicken pen.

He's developing a nice working trot.

I think he looks kind of evil here... contemplating something?  Or just concentrating on me... not sure.

We pretty much lost bend at canter.  It was more yee-haw than anything else.

Even on a "bad" day, he sure works his hind end nicely.

When we finished, he was drenched in sweat and I was tired too.  

This afternoon, I was a bit apprehensive when I got him out of the pasture.  I needn't have worried.  He was a different horse today.  He was quiet, well behaved, obedient and relaxed.  We worked all our 20m circles down by the chicken pen.  He wasn't happy about that but he dealt with it.  When he was relaxed, we took a victory lap -- nicely bent, nicely forward, nice. nice. nice.  Then we worked a bit on leg yield which was just introduced to him at our last lesson.  Yesterday it was a disaster -- high headed horse careening sort of sideways.  Today, he moved over while staying bent and not losing energy.  Lots of verbal praise and neck scratches from me - and we called it day.  

I love this horse!!

I think a week off is not a good thing for this horse. 


  1. Must have just been the week off - but he does looks good in the pictures. Sounds like regular work will do the trick.

  2. He looks GREAT in the pictures. His trot looks fantastic- it's so nice to see a horse using his hindquarters instead of dragging along on the forehand.
    Such a handsome boy he is.

  3. he is such a good looking guy! glad things were better this time.

  4. That boy's getting some muscle!

  5. You look like you are thoroughly enjoying each other!

  6. He really looks great in the photos, especially the trot ones. You will have such fun with this horse :D

  7. He sure is a beautiful animal. I admire your work with him and I love learning from you.

  8. Good boy, Winston!

    He is gorgeous, Annette.

  9. He's so beautiful!! I'm glad you guys are getting along so well.

  10. What a handsome horse. Glad to hear your confidence is growing.


Thanks so much for commenting! I love the conversation.