Sure, the mini-lakes everywhere gave it away too. But I was mainly judging by the cleanliness of my gray horses.
Phantom was at least covered in dry mud. So it was relatively easy to knock off. She also must have seen the forecast for the next week and realized that she is way too overdressed for the upcoming warm weather because I scraped off a whole bunch of hair. I'm back and forth about being paranoid that she has Cushings since she hasn't shed out completely and her coat looks a bit crappy, and realizing that a bunch of other horses on the property look the same so it's no big deal. I've started adding some flax seed to her dinner in the hopes that it helps.
|Thankfully I had decided to ride Phantom instead of Cisco. He was lying down when I went out to get Phantom.|
We had started our canter with a trot pole exercise, where you canter towards the trot poles, come back to trot just before the poles, trot them, and then pick up canter again. Really good exercise - the trot poles make the horse rock back quickly after the downward transition and find their rhythm again.
|He woke up when he saw me and decided he needed a roll before standing up.|
I gave her a chance though. I picked up a canter in 2 point, came around the corner, and aimed her at a 2 stride jump line of very slightly raised poles. She wasn't too bad until she saw the poles, at which point she gunned it, took off super long to the first one, thought about taking off super long to the second one and changed her mind for an awkward step instead, I tried to get her to halt at the wall at the end, she said "what wall?", then "oh, that wall", bounced to a halt while turning her shoulders, and almost popped me off the other direction.
That was enough of that nonsense.
|One side was clean.|
We did a few minutes of this trot with some lateral work and transitions added in. The trick is to try to get her to stretch forward instead of just shortening and tightening her neck. She gave me moments of it, then I tried to get her to stretch at a posting trot, which just shot her forward again, so I gave up.
|The other side, not so much. And it was wettish.|
This usually doesn't last for more than one ride, so I've learned to just try to ride it out for a bit, shut down the worst of it, and get off and try again next day. She's the same when loose as under saddle - when I free lunge her in the arena, once she has cantered, she only canters. No trot. I've had many occasions of thinking I'd let her quit when she trotted down the long side instead of canter, and it's never worked.
Of course, I won't get to ride her again for a few days. I hope I don't have to start all over again!