Wednesday, August 3, 2011

All Alone In The Big Bad Woods

Ok, so our trails around the barn are mostly fields. Still, we went! Alone! For many, many minutes!

Like the rest of the world, it seems, we've been in a weeks long heatwave, but today was lovely, low 80's, low humidity, light breeze, all those nice things. (As an aside, even with all the kvetching about the weather, it's August?!? Really? It's not right. Where is my summer? It was just May, I swear).

Conditions are never perfect though, are they? The ginormous B-52 bomber flies are now out and about-Miles was running and bucking up a storm to get away from one in his pasture when I got to the barn, and we were harassed by at least one out on the trail today. Don't think it didn't cross my mind multiple times to give into temptation and start galloping away from the damn things, either. However, for whatever reason, I was feeling less than confident. I don't know why-believe me, I wish I did. Miles was wonderful, alert but relaxed and curious. Even with the Death Flies buzzing about, he never lost his shit, because he is such a good boy. I was the scardy-cat, worrying about turkeys or deer jumping out from bushes and trees around the bend-I started having a conversation with Miles about how he was going to go back to the pasture and have a good laugh with LaShore and the mares next door about what a wuss-puss his owner is.

Ah, well...I guess I'd rather be annoyed at me than him:) It has been a little bit since our last ride. I didn't lunge him today and haven't in god knows how long. I miss that little activity exactly not at all. Don't get me wrong, lunging is a wonderful tool, but I love not having to do it before a ride. I love it a lot. Today I got on, did two laps at a walk around the arena, and headed out.

Anyway, the fact that I'm whining about not feeling brave enough to canter my OTTB on a trail ride alone is kind of cool, right? I'm so glad I have this blog to look back-it wasn't so long ago I was wringing my hands over the fact that we hadn't gone out on the trails at all.

Next ride, however, we need to work on our walk-trot-walk transitions in preparation for our show debut. It turns out we are both lazy creatures by nature-time to inject some energy into our work! Three weeks and counting....

(Also, we still have the chicken, Marigold. She is very pretty, charming, and she poops. A lot. It wouldn't be so bad if she was an actual back YARD chicken, but it turns out she likes to hang out on the deck by our door-but not come in!-most of the time, until it gets to be dusk and she trots up into her roost. So, I'm pretty much constantly cleaning up chicken crap. We're looking at getting a friend for her, so she feels more confident about hanging out in the yard, and a roost farther away from the house. How cute are Silkie Chickens? VERY CUTE! Image from

Hullo, we r poofy and adoorable, yes? Also, we don't see so gud.


  1. We've being hounded by the B-52's here also. I slapped a couple on Val's back (!) and then had to get the hose out to clean up the ginormous blood spatter :(

    Good on you trail riding solo! I am officially jealous and can't wait until I can write the same blog post...

  2. Yay for trail rides on OTTBs, no matter what pace! It is good for both your souls. Calabar says woods are way better than tracks and arenas anyway. Of course, he wouldn't mind a gallop around our boarding facility, either.

  3. I've found that my mare's waybetter trail riding solo. She HAS to be right in the middle if we're out with others, and she likes to shimmy on up next tothe other horses. Unfortunately, the trail ain't that wide...
    I like those guys, and these guys:
    I've always wanted silkies too! Be aware that chickens are territorial. You'll have to introduce any new ones slowly & carefully.

  4. You went out on the trails alone??!!! I am so envious! One day..... BTW, I love Marigold's name. Those Silkie chickens sure are cute. :-)

  5. I got my stall sign! It is GORGEOUS!! Thank you thank you thank you!!!!

  6. The C-30 cargo flies are horrifying. Weirdly, Derby doesn't seem to mind them terribly. I was zoned out while hand grazing him to nights ago, when I looked up and saw one of those suckers on his rump. I whacked it with the end of my lead rope, and killed it. Inspecting Derby's rump, I could see that the thing had bitten him, and hard - there was a good size bloody spot. Can't believe the horse didn't react. Jag goes nuts when one of those things flies by.

    I love Marigold and the Silkies are too cute - they look like characters straight from Dr. Seuss.

    Being on a trail ride solo is a big step. Well done to you and Miles both!

  7. I'm glad you had a good time on the trails. My horse is a bit spooky, but I think half the time I'm more worried about the scary monsters around than he is!

    And I'm not a fan of bugs. If it's hot, we have horseflies. If it's cool, we have swarms of mosquitoes. I can't win!

  8. How long did you wait before starting him on trails? I'm soooooooo looking forward to taking Kilo out in our big scary woods! DH cleared a nice size path about the width of a car for us but I keep waiting for the *right* time. :) Good for you for taking Miles out of the fence! And oh my goodness, the horse flies are horrible this year! Our poor mare last week literally had 7 on her neck that I swatted while bringing her in from turn out. I wish there were a way to prevent them. At least the horsefly season is only a few weeks! Mean things!

  9. Thanks everyone! For the record, Marigold is going to remain an only chicken for the time being-she seems quite content and loooooves hanging out with the dogs...and yeah, I don't want to deal with territory issues. Also, 4 eggs in 3 days all of a sudden!

    Kilo, I didn't trail ride Miles until I'd had him for over a year-not because I don't think he would have been fine last summer, but I didn't want to go alone and I could never work it out with other people at the barn. I bet Kilo will be awesome at it:)