Hickory Grove training blog

I brought Leo in and tacked him up.  He was surprisingly clean for this time of year!  I cleaned his hooves and noted they were recently trimmed, but didn’t think anything of it.  I tacked up and fed cookies and played with him, then set out across the gravel in front of the barn and down the road.  He was very lethargic!  I wondered if he was sick, actually.  I turned him around after about 50 yards and came back to the barn.  Cindy took his temperature and we both gave him a good once-over.  His expression was bright and playful and he was interested in everything.  We concluded he had sore hooves from the trim.   Dang.

Then I brought Tag in and after grooming and tacking took him out to maybe ride with Jenny Mlosic who was riding by.  I got on him outside and it was like his nerves were outside his skin.  He actually did a mini bolt (for like 5 strides, but it was enough for me to think better of a trail ride without some ring work first at least.)  I got off, took him in the indoor and had a lunging session and it took him a surprising amount of time to settle, considering that he had been allowed to run around in the indoor before tacking and really didn’t do much.  Silly guy.  So I got on in the indoor and had a good session.  Sorry I did not get a picture.  Boo.

Next up was Elsa.  I tacked her up while she mugged for cookies like this: 

She is quite hysterical.  We went out and had a fairly long hack out in the DNR.  During it we did some work on staying on pace on a more slack rein, which went well.  Here’s some walk work in teh woods:


Hacking out with Larry, Leo and Elsa

Beautiful day.  Larry on Leo and I on Elsa went out for a hack.  Elsa was really clean considering the mud in the paddock and she is fully committed to spring shedding as evidenced by the floor after grooming.

I thought I took a picture of her cute face, but alas I did not.

On our ride we walked down the hill to the end of the road, had a little interaction with the funny black dog with the white feet down there, and trotted back up the hill.  Elsa was ready to go and Larry and Leo were enjoying each other.

We continued our ride past the barn and on, in walk, trot and canter to the Dalandar cemetary and then a little jaunt further south to the pavement.  On the way home Larry was working on right lead canter and ended with some lovely work.  My picture does not do it justice.Elsa was a little on her toes for the first part of the ride, but came around nicely at the end.  We walked home from the T intersection.  A lovely day.




Hickory Grove Training Blog

I brought both Elsa and Tag in to blow off some steam in the indoor.  Their paddock was dry on the near to the barn side and quite muddy down below.  They had the good sense to stay mostly out of the mud, and looked pretty good considering the circumstances.

I tacked Elsa and we headed off down the road to the end of it by the river.  We had a nice walk warm up down the hill.  Then we trotted back up the hill and she was swinging along quite beautifully – nice big step.

We walked through the yard and there was a trailer with hay on it with a tarp, which Elsa mentioned was scary, but then pretty much walked right by it.  We walked and trotted over to the hickory grove and then had a canter in it.  On the second trip around, I noticed we were leaving moderate hoof prints, so we put an end to that.  We had a lovely walk around the outside of the field, and viewed ten deer, which she had no problem with.

Then, to get some more cantering in, we went on the gravel road for a while and then turned around and walked home.  I untacked her and she enjoyed a roll in the sand.

I brought Tag in and groomed him and spent some extra time telling him how good he is and scratching his itchy shedding face and ears, which he appreciated.

Then we worked in the arena in all gaits and he did extraordinarily well considering he hasn’t been ridden since earlier this month.  So we went out on a hack over to the Delander cemetery.  He wanted to turn back when we were walking, but we had a discussion about that and carried on.  We had some nice work in trot and canter.

We walked the last half mile home and then I untacked him and let him roll in the sand.  Good man.



Tag and Elsa

Plenty of mud out in the paddocks today and his blanket looked like this so I hung it outside to dry.

And he looked like this:

So I spent a little extra time grooming him and also playing with him:

After grooming I tacked him up and rode in the indoor and he was a little light on his feet – bucked a few times when we got to canter, but after a while he got over himself and we proceeded on a hack.

We headed down the hill and he decided to stop and spin back toward home and we had a discussion about that and then carried on down the hill and back up again.  Then past the barn and down the gravel road for a nice trot and canter hack:

I untacked Tag and turned him out in the indoor to roll.  I went out to get Elsa, brought her in the indoor and then let her loose to roll.  It was at this point that both Tag and Elsa thought it was time to play in the good footing.  They ran around like children and had the most lovely time.

Eventually Elsa let me catcher her again and I groomed and tacked her and then put the blanket back on Tag and turned him out.  Elsa was plenty muddy as well and happy to interact:

After grooming and tacking, Elsa and I headed straight out the door and down the hill:

Then it was back up the hill and along the gravel road and over to the Delonder Cemetery:

Thenwe had a lovely trot and canter on the way home and walked the last half mile home.  Lovely day.


Elsa ride

I brought Elsa in to the arena, took off her halter and let her loose.  I thought she would run and play, but she went right to rolling.  THEN she got up and ran around for a bit, then trotted right up to me, as if to say, “ok, let’s go riding now.”  Ha ha.  Funny girl.

She was quite attentive today and had some quite good work in all gaits.

One of the advantages of riding in the afternoon is an open arena.  After the ride, I stripped her tack and let her roll again, of which she took full advantage.  Then I gave her a quick groom to get the sand off, put her blanket back on and turned her out.



Elsa goes hacking

I brought Elsa in and groomed her.  She was very affectionate and cute.  I warmed up in the arena in walk for quite a while, then moved on to trot and canter.  She got better and better and had some nice work.

Then we went for a walk on the gravel road, accompanying Archie and Megan on their handwalk.  We walked more than half way to the cemetary by the crossroads.  Elsa enjoyed herself and walked along in a relaxed manner.  I spaced it on getting a picture of Elsa, sorry, but I did get a picture of Megan and Archie on the walk.

Canter work

I brought her in, let her bounce about in the indoor for a few minutes where she had a grand time, groomed, and tacked up.  Her hooves look great.

I started to go out to the prairie for a hack, but there was occasionally ice and where it wasn’t icy, it was pool-table hard.  We went about 50 yards and threw in the towel.

We worked in the indoor with a longish walk warmup and then a lot of work on half halt in trot.  She did well with that, and once we got the trot softer in her topline, I was rewarded with some very nice canter work.  We even got to work on trot-canter-trot transitions, one of my favorite exercise for topline suppling.

We had a nice walk warm down and then I let her loose to roll in the arena.  I put her blanket on because it is damp, so feels chilly!

Riding out – not

I brought her in and tacked her up, feeding her several peppermints from Archie’s stash.  She was in quite the playful mood.  The temperature was right at 32 degrees, but I went out to hack in the prairie any way.  I went about 20 feet and turned around as there was unpredictable ice where melting snow had produced puddles.  So this is about all we saw of the prairie:

But luckily, we have an indoor at HG.  We had a nice long walk hack warmup and then some work in trot and some very good work in canter.  We had a long warm down and I let her roll in the arena after the workout.

Stretching and some fun

I interrupted Elsa’s supper hay, which she seemed ok with.  I took her blanket off and groomed her and scratched her withers where the hair always gets mussed by the blanket.  She was loving that.

We did a nice slow stretching workout in the arena in all gaits and she loosened up nicely.  By the end we were both grinning.

Afterward I removed her tack and let her rollin the arena.  Fun day!