Thursday 23 January 2020

Finally - a Twofer!

On Tuesday morning I got out of bed (around 10:30), got dressed in warmish riding clothes, and went over to my mom's house to have what will hopefully be the final fitting on my riding skirt before heading out to the barn. Thankfully I live close to her because instead of heading right out to the barn I had to go back home to grab the three things I'd forgotten, one of which was a jacket to ride in. And then I decided to have lunch at home instead of McDonald's.

Thus I got out to the barn a little later than I was hoping.

No worries - it was still daylight and sunny when I arrived. Phantom was a little toasty under her blanket with her 200g liner on so I did the tablecloth trick and slid it out from under the top layer without removing it. And then made Cisco carry it into the barn for me.
I finally redid Cisco's tail. It's really clean in it's wrap and very white. 
Cisco was the first horse up for the day. I left the overhead door into the arena open since it was probably colder inside than outside at that time. That was a little exciting for Cisco for the first bit of the ride (his first ride in about 2 weeks). Our trot was erratic and he kept trying to dive towards the open door anytime I'd circle across the arena. I wasn't sure if we'd do anything more than trot through the ride.

After about 20 minutes of trotting, I had a different horse. This one was (mostly) relaxed and listening to me. So we did some canter.

Apparently, I have inadvertently taught Cisco that when I say "good" at a canter it means slam on the brakes. No idea how this happened, but it's been happening over the last couple of rides. I think I'm going to start wearing spurs and carrying the dressage whip instead of the jump bat because I have no backup to get after him. Need to fix this right away!
Phantom's forefloof is longer this year than it usually is. It didn't seem to get as rubbed by her fly mask this summer as it usually does. 
The good thing is that he's giving me moments at a canter to say "good" to him. I had a couple of lovely step into canter transitions to the right (and some not-so-lovely tranter transitions to the left). He's been wanting to get a bit curled up though. I've been using the Sprenger Duo on him for the last few rides, and I'm not sure if that is when the problem started. I might swap his bits up again for a couple of rides and see if that helps the canter. Otherwise, I like this bit at a trot for him. He's still mouthy though.

For the first time in a long time I managed to get both horses ridden. By the time I hopped on Phantom it had been dark for a couple of hours and the temperature had dropped considerably. Or at least felt like it had. Thus I bundled up to hop on her. Long johns (not my warmest ones), Kerrits fleece full-seats, my full chaps that I had forgotten were in my tack box, a dry shirt (swapped between horses), a soft shell jacket, a fleece helmet cover, neck cover, and Thinsulate gloves. And my regular paddock boots because I hate my winter paddock boots.

I was chilled at the beginning on the ride (especially my butt since it wasn't covered up by the chaps or a jacket) and I couldn't feel the reins through the puffy gloves. As soon as I got going faster than a walk I warmed up.
The amount of polar pony fur is ridiculous.
Phantom did another session of 1 minute trot sets. Her first couple of trots were a little odd and I was quite worried that she was tying up as she kept trying to stop. That's not her. But by the third set she was nice and forward and felt quite good. So I'm not sure what that blip was about and I'm going to try not to overthink it.

And then I went home to stretch my back and roll out my legs. I was pretty sore. But not tired!