I did my one thing for the day that scared me.
I rode Leah bareback through the snow.
I started out with a vague idea that I might do it. Might. But I didn't think I actually would.
I took your suggestions about some of the easy groundwork--side passing exercises and such, and it was going so well, I figured--I should get the bridle and jump on!
I've never ridden Leah bareback, but I figured this would be the time to do it while there's 2 feet of pillowing snow on the ground to catch me if I fall.
I maneuvered her over to my
Leah's head went up like, Um, what are you doing?? But I petted her, massaged her neck, and then asked her to move out.
1st lap around. Whew, we made it! I should get off and celebrate--don't push my luck. Or, I could go around again.
2nd lap around. I should end here. No one will ever know. End on a positive note, right? Isn't that what they say. But, you know, you should go around both directions.....
3rd lap around. Uh oh, she's trotting. That kinda hurts. Should I get off now? Okay, I'll circle her and see where this goes. She seems calm enough, I guess.
4th lap around. She walked the whole way, yay! Now, it's time to get off and end on a good note.
I took off her bridle, put her back, and then Beautiful Girl came to inquire, Why not me, mom?
I'm a good girl.
I'm cute and I have a GREAT sense of humor.
One kiss before you leave, okay?
It has been COLD here--in the negatives at night and a high of 12 degrees F today.
Riding bareback keeps me warm, but I also rely on these articles of clothing.
1. Warm riding boots---Equestrian style from Hunter. These are insulated, have a heel kick, reflectors, adjustable band, flexible at the joints, riding heels, and the kind of rubber that withstands urine. They sold out of them on the Hunter website, so I had to search hard for them, eventually finding them at a little shop in London who were willing to ship. I imagine Hunter will bring them back next year.
2. NorthFace WOMEN'S THERMOBALL™ FULL ZIP JACKET & Vest.
I live in this vest. It's light enough to wear indoors. It doesn't rip when working with horses. It cleans up easy. And, it's thin enough to wear under a coat. In fact, I have the coat that matches it, but I don't wear it with the horses. Instead, I wear....
This cheap, down-filled Calvin Klein coat. I purchased it years ago from a discount store, and it has held up. It's warm and not too puffy.
For pants, I wear the Kerrits winter riding breeches that can be tucked in or worn outside your boots. I've had these for years and years, but I think they still make them. They keep me pretty warm.
I also wear a hat and snowboard mittens and, some days, I wear a full face mask, too, or a neck warmer that I can pull up over my face.
I have a clinic on Saturday where the high is predicted to be in the low 20's. That'll be a cold one!
I have one more fear to conquer, too. I haven't ridden Cowboy bareback through the snow out in the open yet. I really want to accomplish it. Wish me luck.