We went out on a solo hack in the CRP ground. He was quite relaxed and enjoyed himself immensely. We managed to kick up a pheasant, which I haven’t done in a while, and Luke didn’t jump (much). Since it flew up pretty much under his hooves, he had every right to do more than he did. Good man all around.

Pippa gets a new bridle

When I arrived, Margaret already had Pippa in the aisle. She was working on having Pippa ground tie while she groomed her and was apparently having good success, as the young mare was standing agreeably with a relaxed expression. I finished the rest of the grooming with her in the cross ties, since I had to walk back and forth to my car for some things and to the tack room to get her saddle and new bridle.

After I worked her in hand while chatting with Jon, I put her new bridle on. (Beautiful hand-me down from her brother. Michelle has taken such good care of the bridle. It is in supple, lovely condition.) I took the dropped noseband off and left her with the cavesson. I am not a big fan of dropped nosebands, aesthetically or functionally, but I can live with them. I just don’t use them if there isn’t good reason. I hung the strap on the girth bar in the tack room.

I got on and did a tour about the area around the arena, over by the hydrant and garden, through the water complex and back, never leaving sight of the barn. Magee appeared on Lottie and we both worked in the arena for about 10 minutes. We had some nice canter work. We moved the fences so that there is room to go around the outside of them.

Then Pippa led “Uncle Lottie” on a tour of the property including going by the spraying sprinkler in the east pasture, along the hilly trail by the fenceline, to the water complex, around the field counter clockwise, down the path from the south field to the lower meadow where the related-distance tables are (which is more of a slope than it seems and she did well), through the water complex and to the far side of the arena where I dismounted. Great day.

Elastic, elastic, elastic

As I mentioned yesterday, I am now endevouring to ride her on light contact. After a few minutes of doing so, all the while reminding myself “elastic soft connection” it became clear to me that this connection is really a help to her young, occasionally unbalanced self. I should not be surprised.

We had some pretty acceptable work in the ring and then went on a hack with Margaret and Lottie, and other than a few moments of extreme lightness that only young horses know how to conjure, it went well.

White German Shepherd!

We tacked up and went out for a hack, through the owl woods, across the road, did some canter work in the big field in the park. He felt pretty good on both leads today and he was just cheerful as all getout. What a treat he is!

Yeah, this is a photo that I snagged off the internet, but it is a reasonable facsimile to the dogs expression during our encounter.

Yeah, this is a photo that I snagged off the internet, but it is a reasonable facsimile to the dog’s expression during our encounter.

As we were trotting through the woods across the lake from the beach, we came upon an older couple with a loose white german shepherd. He came bounding up in an interested but friendly manner and gave his mom and dad apoplectic fits while Austin merely looked around for the other 30 hounds, never missing a step. They gathered up their dog and apologized profusely while I assured them there was no problem and we carried on with our trot around the lake. We did some more canter work in the field back on the 3G side of the road, then walked home. Nice day.