It was an amazing ride – the kids rode bareback and had excellent seats as was evidenced by the fact that in heading around the bend for home one of the horses did what I called an Air B and B – a buck and a bounce. The rider remained in her seat and we continued on.
I was (again) most impressed with the fact that Deb was both attentive to her young charges and at the same time hands off, meaning that she did not tell them “Hands down, heels up. Now do this, this, and this.” She did indicate that more training takes place in warmer weather – on Deb’s part, this has to be a judgement call. She gave an example of this, saying that they were all riding down at the river and the horses balked when they came to a crossing. Deb wisely decided to work on crossings on a warmer day.
It was so incredible the kids were so happy – they were laughing, talking, and at one point even singing. And Deb seemed happy too. I think she has found her niche in working with kids and horses. But what an amazing undertaking – dealing with all those kids and all those horses – this is not something most could do well.
Towards the ride’s end we did the creek loop off of Jim’s Road. I lead Raudi across because there were horses on all sides of me. And after, I made her stand still twice on Jim’s Road while the other horses passed by. This is an integral part of her training. In past Competitive Trail Rides, she has gotten real antsy at pulse and respiration stops. This is in part because she is food obsessed and wants to get at the grass. I figure that now is the time to break this bad habit, while there’s no grass. And come spring, we will keep at it.
Raudi is in training, and so am I. I usually ride alone or with Pete, so I am not used to group rides. The last time I rode with Deb was last spring – on the Crevasse Moraine Trail system. It was extremely buggy and for Raudi, a not so fun ride. I didn’t put bug dope on Raudi. She just wanted to bolt and get away from the mosquitoes. Today there were no bugs.
We all arrived back at Base Camp safe and sound. We tied our horses up. Deb and crew put blankets on the horses. Me and the girls, we got down on the ground and made snow angels before they all departed.
I told Deb before she left that I hope to ride with the posse this spring because I need more experience riding with others. My thinking is, this might actually be fun. Imagine that!
Deb, horses, dogs, and girls pulled out of the driveway and I checked my GPS watch. We rode 3 miles, at 2.5 miles per hour. No record, but considering it was cold out, it’s its own sort of accomplishment.
Next: 360. 12/29/17: Another Project