Quite a few things went just right today, though I still made two big mistakes. I had a limited amount of time today before my parents holiday party, so I saved myself some time by leaving the trailer hooked up and loaded. All I needed to do was grab the mare, hose her legs down (mud season ugh) and shove her boots on.
This went smoothly, though this is where I made my first mistake. I thought Tarma was far enough in her trim cycle to forgo the mud straps on her front Scoot boots. I’ve done a few rides without them and the boots have been fine. The second mistake was more minor, in that I left her fleece cooler on her stall door, where it does no good drying her off after a trail ride.
She self loaded again and didn’t even throw shade when I closed the divider. We hauled easily to a nearby trailhead on private timberlands, and as I was tacking up a good friend and her husband were walking by and stopped to chat and I got to show off my new trailer for a bit. I tacked up in record time and made my third mistake of the day; I left my saddle bags at the trailer, telling myself it was just a short ride so I didn’t need them.
Even being a little rushed and with no lunging, just a few moments pause to breathe and check in, I was mounted and we were off. This area is a canyon, where you stop at the top and ride down then climb back up, just the ticket for a short but technically difficult ride. Tarma called out a few times for other horses, but we had the place to ourselves due to the high winds and rains forecasted for later. Everything was going swimmingly until we were climbing back up and we stopped to catch our breath. She had been marching along on a loose rein, with that “let’s see what’s around the bend” energy I adore. But what do my eyes spy but a bare front hoof, sans Scoot boot? Only the birds and Tarma heard my cursing. We were too far along to completely retrace our steps, and I didn’t have a spare to pop on her…it was sitting in my useless saddlebags.
We did manage to get back to the trailer without issue, though we had to take a longer way to avoid the gravel road. She trotted out sound but did chip a tiny bit on the outside of her hoof. Aaaargh! Lessons learned: she trusts me enough to be alone with me; I need to be a lot more anal about constantly checking her boots; and always, always ride with a spare.