Thursday, September 18, 2014

schooling on turf!!

I FINALLY rode my horse again! woo hoo!! We hadn't ridden since last thursday, tho I've certainly spent plenty of time at the barn cold hosing and scrubbing and generally fretting over Isabel's wound. 

It's a bit infected, but showed immediate improvement after starting her on bute and SMZs. The swelling has gone down a tad and she was less fussy about me scrubbing and treating it. She's been sound all along. Just dramatic. Ya know, red mare stuff. 

her fan club thought she looked 'majestic' with her back-lit mane and tail

Then I noticed a trainer taking a lesson out to the temporary turf ring set up for this weekend's CT and figured, what the hell - let's go for it. So I tossed on the tack, thinking that if Isabel was uncomfortable or uncooperative we'd just putz around at the walk to get familiar with the ring.

Isabel luvs putzing. also, notice the bold deer hangin out? 

But Isabel was NOT uncomfortable or uncooperative. She wasn't even particularly fresh or sassy. Just straight up ready for whatever. She was a little looky around the ring, since it's essentially a roped off section of a large field, with pastures etc in the distance to eyeball. But she settled down nicely and even showed off a relaxed and soft trot for the trainer (who hasn't seen us go in a few months and was impressed that she can actually put her head down lol). 

seriously - this doe and fawn just don't care

The lesson kid riding with us is showing in the 12" division, so the fences were set at speed bump height. I typically avoid jumping anything below 2' just to stay on top of my confidence game - but I think I'm finally past the "2' looks big" stage, plus I really wanted to pop over some stuff and get a sense of the terrain and turns. 

apparently i *do* know how to release - but only over itty bitty stuff

The course isn't actually set yet for the show, but I had plunked down a bunch of standards and poles and cavaletti in potential spots last weekend and nobody has bothered moving them... 

 this coop might be the biggest thing out there right now

Isabel wanted to careen around the turns, and there are definitely areas of the ring where it's more difficult to balance her - especially the corners nearest the barn. Plus the corners ended up being the lowest ground in the ring bc we tried to make it as big as possible while still keeping it mostly flat.

 she's ready to GO

But she steered around really well, and didn't take off or anything. If anything, she's too adjustable. I'm super paranoid about wiping out like we nearly did last time we jumped out here... so I was definitely holding for the shorter distances. This led to me burying her a couple times... (when will I ever learn??) but she's pretty forgiving and getting buried at an 18" fence doesn't faze her.

showin off over her fave - a little X

It was essentially just a fun ride after so many days off - and was pretty similar to my last ride, wherein we aimed for low-pressure and positive. I'm still pretty bummed that we missed out on the big lessons and xc schooling this past weekend... and I think we will stay in the 2' division just to maintain my own sanity. 

But it's nice to know that Isabel didn't really lose anything from it. We simply didn't gain new experiences. Those will come in time though.  

Most of the pictures above are stills from this video - but it's still fun to watch (for me, at least lol). The commentary is funny too, as the videographer is pretty much Isabel's #1 fan, and then got terrified at the end bc maybe she thought we were going to run them over? lol fun times


  1. Replies
    1. lol thanks - she's quite fond of swishing it every which way :)

  2. Fun rides can be worth their weight in gold sometimes!! And seriously deer...don't you know you are supposed to be hiding?

    1. thanks - and i agree. it's taken me so long to face down some jumps without feeling my heart rate spike that i dont' mind coasting for a little while :)

      and the deer here are nuts. the surrounding woods are state park - so no hunting. and these guys KNOW they're safe. it's ridiculous lol

  3. Replies
    1. thanks - it is *really* pretty out there, tho the undulating terrain means the flat-ish area is kinda small and circular and creates some pretty tight turns.

      all the same, we would keep it up year round except that other ppl use that field too... boo

  4. I've recently ventured outside the ring to jump a bit, and prefer to jump smaller when I'm unfamiliar with the terrain/area. But I'm a weenie, haha

    1. yea i'm right there with you! any kind of change can definitely get me backed off a little bit, even if izzy is fine lol

  5. This ride sounds like it was a lot of fun! I'm not a jumper extraordinaire but I think I can say with confidence that sometimes just "goofing around" with the smaller stuff just because you can is really great for a mental break.

    1. thanks! it *was* fun, and i'm all about goofing around and mental breaks :)

  6. Glad her hock is healing up! You wouldn't know she's got a boo boo from the way she goes in the video--very fun!

    1. Thanks! I'm really glad too- it was kind of dicey for a moment there!


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