Happy Independence Day!!!! I know I don't normally ride Chrome two days in a row, but we never have cool weather in July so I couldn't resist. :D
First I have to share a video of him getting his bridle put on. He's so good at it!!! He hasn't learned to grab it yet, so I still put my finger in his mouth, but he keeps his head low and relaxed.... so low in fact that I have to bend over to bridle him (sigh to be tall with a short horse lol).
Now on to the ride.
Pulling that stunt where he turns left, then I turn him
right and he tries to duck right... brat!
However check out how far under he steps! :D
He is so handsome!
I have to stop steering him like a baby horse though lol.
Once we got past our property which is about 100 yards he stopped trying to turn around and started walking at a steady, although slow, walk. He continued to eyeball everything, but otherwise he was good and I was able to stop kicking the crap out of him and enjoy the ride. I noticed that I'm starting to nag him with my legs though so I definitely need to tap him with the crop instead of nagging. I want to nip the balking in the bud as quickly as possible.
At the .84 mile mark we were into unknown territory (for him, not me obviously). He did great up until the one mile mark, then he saw a horse... and that horse neighed at him... and he planted his feet and tried to neigh back but his neigh got stuck behind the bit (haha, no clue why he aborted mid-neigh).... so I got off! LOL! I'm not ready to ride him past horses he's never seen before, since he gets too excited. As I was leading him he tried trotting, but I corrected him because I don't want him to think that's default behavior when he sees other horses. After a couple of correction he didn't offer to trot again, then I had to correct him for shouldering into me while trying to gawk at the horses. After that we were good again. :)
Leaning down to pet him.
LOVE Chrome's neck! LOVE that pony!!!
We continued on down the road and the next obstacle was the flag you saw in the picture at the beginning of the post. He was NOT sure about that flag. When I think about it, this is the first flag he's ever seen. I'm going to have to get one now lol. He was also very distracted by all of the horses lining the road. I grabbed the flag so it would stop blowing and asked him to step up to investigate. While doing this the owner of the property pulled into the driveway and got out of her car to watch. I was worried at first but she was smiling. Chrome finally sniffed it and relaxed, so I praised him and told him I knew it wouldn't kill him. The lady laughed and asked if I wanted her to take it down and I said NO he needs to learn to deal with it. It's great training. Then she said he's beautiful which made me beam hehe.
This picture is actually on the way back home.
He wasn't worried about it this time.
We stopped next to hubby's car (he was following us and turning his flashers on when people drove by going sixty miles an hour on a thirty mile an hour road) in the shade for a break because I was finally getting hot. I still can't complain about how gorgeous it was. Normally in July it's over 100F with humidity so high you feel like you are swimming through the air. Today the humidity was around 30%. That's unheard of around here!!! After our break we walked a short way down to the next road (that made 1.35 miles), then turned around. As we were walking back in the direction of home I heard sirens, but it was out on the main highway so I ignored them. A few minutes later I heard honking behind me and turned around. The ambulance was headed out way!!! I ran up the bank on the side of the road and Chrome trotted after me, then the ambulance zoomed by (they kept the sirens off which I appreciated). Chrome was great!!! He followed me promptly, with no hesitation about the ditch and didn't bat an eye at the ambulance speeding by. I love this horse!! I walked him back by all of the horses and the mule (that is sooooo cute trying to nicker like a horse with her cute mule voice). Once past all of them (at 1.82 miles) I got back on with him standing right next to a culvert that worried him on the way out lol.
I then rode him all the way home. What's hilarious is that as soon as we got back to our road over the hill where we go walking he gave a big sigh, a few snorts and totally relaxed like his mind was totally blown and he had no more energy left to be looky and silly. :D Crazy colt! We rode past the neighbor with the horses, but this time they were out in their pasture grazing. Chrome kept looking over at them, but continued to walk. When we got almost past their pasture they galloped up behind Chrome. He just glanced over his shoulder and kept going LOL!!!! So he's totally fine with them now because he's seen them a few times. I hope he will eventually be that way with all of the horses, pony, foals and mules on the road we explored today.
We were almost home when I got mauled by mosquitoes!!! I couldn't take it anymore, so we trotted the rest of the way home. When we got to the driveway I asked him to stop while my hubby shut the gate and Chrome just stood there like he was too tired to walk another step. I couldn't help laughing at him. We went a total of 2.78 miles (it was further going out than back because we went up the road in the opposite direction at the beginning for those first pictures) which is further than we've ever gone so I imagine he was tired, especially with all the emotional energy he spent being a turd about the other horses. We walked up the driveway and I untacked him while he grazed. Since I didn't put a halter on I went to get a bit of feed (not his full amount since he was warm) and shook it to get him to come back to the pasture. He trotted to me! Yeah, good try making me think you were too exhausted to walk another step Chrome!
He got lots of scratches and loving, then I went inside to assess the damage to my legs.... TEN mosquito bites!! I am not wearing my thin breeches out on the road again! We've had too much rain and the mosquitoes are the size of jets lol. It was totally worth it though because I had fun and we both got exercise. :D Oh and the ride took one hour and six minutes. Not bad for the standing around we did and the balking and gawking he did.
I'll take that for a great Forth of July ride!! Now off to watch fireworks at the lake!
P.S. When we were almost home one of my other neighbor's dogs ran up the driveway, growling and barking behind us.... I'm so glad Chrome doesn't mind dogs at all. He's great with dogs and traffic, he just needs more exposure to his fellow equine neighbors! I have to say I'm glad I was on Chrome's back though because those dogs were acting VERY aggressive, but they had no interest in a horse (thank goodness!!!!!!). I think that's everything. I hope I haven't forgotten anything else. :) Have a great weekend everyone!!