My closest friends and I have worked out a routine this spring; I haul Tarma up to Adriane’s farm one Thursday a month for pony pedicure day, and then we stay the weekend and ride. My friends horses take turns keeping Tarma company in her side pasture or a stall and I get to ride with my friends, places that are a tad far for a day haul.
We had a wildly late start today, after a girls movie night and allergies kicking all our butts. I napped off and on while Adriane cleaned out her trailer and reorganized everything. Our plans changed from a ride along a river to grabbing dinner on our way to Whipple Creek Park. This turned out to be a solid choice, as we got the usually busy park all to ourselves. We were able to enjoy dinner as the horses munched on hay, but it started to rain as we finished tacking up.
I have to be honest, I was hopeful but not super confident after our Wednesday incident. My fears were unfounded, as Tarma worked super hard and never took a bad step. Despite the rain, the deepening dusk and occasionally slippery trails, she was cautious and listening and careful. We have to work a lot harder on not following too closely, as we got into a few sticky situations when Rue would stop or spin suddenly. She was easily adjustable and quite a bit more careful on the downhills. For once she didn’t feel like leading at all, so she got to be sandwiched in the middle of Rue and Pen (poor Pen, he’s so much slower than the mares he’s usually the caboose!)
Adriane had some boot trouble, so I ended up hopping off and sticking her mare’s rear Scoot Boots on my cantle bags and hiking a bit before I found a handy stump to use to remount. Tarma stood while I futzed and didn’t try to walk off or fidget. I did work on asking Tarma to follow behind me instead of leading me.
We made it back to trailer super late as it really started to pour, so we untacked and shoved the horses into the trailer as quickly as we could. The horses definitely turned the trailer into a sauna! We’re hauling home and thanks to our kids the horses have dinner and clean, dry stalls waiting for them. This was the confidence rebuilding ride I needed. It’s ok for Tarma and I to dislike arena rides, so long as we have the trails for now! It’s always an adventure and we’re all happy we rode… although quite damp!