Monday, March 7, 2022

Getting it together!

LH and I had our fourth jump lesson Thursday. We started out much better, braver, and bolder than we had been. At the same time I was thinking I had remembered how to jump, JT commented that LH was getting his groove back. I was seeing distances and riding him to them and getting used to the amount of leg needed (hint, more than Yoshi!). Hands forward to the jump, leg on. We then did a course that started with a bending line, left hand turn to a 2 stride, 5 stride bending line to a 1 stride including his murder butterfly jump and the liver pool. Then it was a right hand turn to a single vertical, 6 strides to a 2 stride. Another right hand turn to another vertical, 5 strides to an oxer. 

The bending line was fine every time we did it. The first two stride I didn't have enough forward, but we fumbled through, but then he backed way off to the butterflies and popped two strides into the one and so stopped at the liverpool, just no way he was going to manage that. We circled back around and slugged over it again. He considered stopping, but then he went and took a really awkward jump over the liver pool. I landed way up on his neck but fought my way back into the saddle, barely. So we came around again and finally got something passable if not pretty. He is so compressible and adjustable and if I am not there to support, will definitely compress to a 9-10 foot stride that makes all the lines bleck. 

We resumed the course then and got around the whole thing pretty well. Thinking hands together, towards the jump, and BOTH legs on seemed to work the best for me to mentally get it together. Once I was actually asking him to move forward he easily waltzed down the lines, getting tight to the out a couple of times. 

Definitely all still a work in progress, he's a very different ride from Yoshi. 

Fabio hair FTW 

In other versions of getting my shit together... I planned a heck of a day for myself Thursday. The day started with the above lesson with JT, then I took LH to his vet appointment that ended up running long. Then I took the trailer with and bought all of Yoshi's grain/hay for the next month. I buy hay at Larsen's and they sell by weight. So his 5 bales of 3 string alfalfa - total of 630#... The guys there who work the loaders are AMAZING and he got it all nicely into the trailer so I could shut the ramp, but... I needed to put Yoshi in there the next day, so once I got to the GY's, I got to wrestle human sized bales of alfalfa into the one stall so Yoshi could fit in the other. I also had to rearrange the 5 - 50# bags of grain (no one but myself to blame, should've had them put them in the tack room to start, not the horse part). 

Then I flatted Yoshi. He felt okay mostly. Wednesday we took a hand walk because my helmet was at JT's. He has become SO GOOD at that and we walked and trotted together. At one point I was watching him do a really nice trot lengthening (? probably? hard to tell from the ground while running next to him in paddock boots) and then he started CANTERING! He was still being polite, but I definitely did not trust the process or my sprinting ability on sand in boots, so we stopped. Thursday we just hacked around in the pasture, the first time I had ridden him in there in a while. He trailed around after me while I dragged the giant water wheel out of the dressage arena, very carefully stepping in and out of the arena with me, good boy. The canter he wanted to be a bit quick and stiff, but ended up softening, and we quit on a good note. 

I had decided that rather than unhook the truck/trailer, I would just run home. So I did, at the very end of the daylight. What is usually a pretty easy jog was pretty tiring by that time! 

Friday morning I (reluctantly) ran back over and cleaned tack for a while. LH got his own bridle so I could stop moving that back and forth between barns and stop adjusting it up/down 1-2 holes. After oiling both bridles and a girth, I loaded up ALL the things. I had accumulated much more stuff at the GY's than I realized. I divided, somewhat successfully, into limited things going with Yoshi to his new place, stuff LH could use (ie Equiderma), and stuff LH does not need (ie polo wraps). Then I loaded Yoshi. He definitely thought about stopping halfway on to eat the alfalfa in the stall beside him, but was thrilled to discover there was alfalfa in his hay bag too. 

We stopped briefly at my house to collect my coffee and breakfast I couldn't run over with

Then headed about 45 minutes away - I have a serious love-hate relationship with this road. It is lime rock with a lot of places of wash board so pretty unpleasant to drive, but it is SO pretty. 

Checking out his new set up - the shelter is one of those built across a fence line so he can hang in the shade "with" the horse in the adjacent pasture

He was the actual best boy and walked the lane between pastures so politely while other horses tried to greet him

He hung out in the field while we unloaded the hay/grain with the aid of a tractor. Then I brought him in and tacked him up. He was SO GOOD. The horses near where I was riding were running around a bit, there was a tractor doing some work within eyesight, and the neighbors were occasionally firing off a shot gun. And he was perfect. Afterwards I tied him up near where they're constructing an enclosed feed room and he stood so politely while I bathed him. 

Then obviously had a good roll

Those legs belong to his fence line friend

Each field is a full acre and for early March they already have pretty good grass. The barn owner is the same one who took care of Zing for 5 years while I was in school, so I know and trust her. This is good because the drive time + lime rock road means that I'll see him once a week. I think he'll be happier out there with friends much closer than before. He has two mares across the lane to make eyes at and then an older gelding to share the fence line with.

Came out Saturday and found them napping/cheesing like this. Yosh said Hi to me and then I sat down nearby to read. His friend kept begging, but Yosh settled down to nap next to him. I had never seen him nap in his solo pasture at the GY's. This makes my heart so happy. 


  1. I'm glad it sounds like you're really getting into a good groove with LH and that Yoshi settled in to his new digs!

  2. hm LH kinda seems like maybe a similar sort of ride to charlie in lessons -- like, obvi he can do the distances. but, we can also, like, *not* do them, in interesting and creative and not always super productive ways lol....

    so glad Yosh seems to like the new place and esp that he has friends!!

    1. Yes to the not always super productive, creative attempts, but... yeah, not ideal.

  3. I just skimmed through your blog posts re Yoshi. I'm hoping he loves his new home and enjoys the pasture!