Apparently I have been living under a rock.
I have been dying to get Rose on an actual trail ride, with a trail, bushes, trees, and water. However, riding in the morning doesn't work out for most peoples schedules, and it also makes it hard to meet many other boarders. So, I've continued on with our training in the cool mornings with the entire facility to myself, sands barn staff of course. However, on Monday I was running behind in my schedule due to a wonderful surprise visit from some family and a friend. After all of my lovely guests left I was cleaning my tack when a couple fellow boarders came by and were discussing the creek on the property that you can ride too.
CREEK! What? Where?
I set down my glycerin bar and sponge and politely intruded on their conversation. I was intrigued to know where this creek was and how to get there. Apparently it is pretty easy and is just well hidden enough from the main barn that not many people know that it is on the property. I for instance, thought that the creek ran through the neighbors field. So, I finished cleaning my tack and started thinking about our next ride, which was today.
I am not a fan of going on trail rides alone, but at this rate I figured that it's either go alone or not at all. That is until the fall comes, and the afternoons are cool again. I warmed Rose up in the big outdoor arena, making sure to burn off any of her excess energy. Once she was focused and ready, I put on her Cavello boots and grabbed my cell phone (just in case), and headed down the gravel drive.
It took a little while just to get down the drive since she hadn't seen this part of the property since early May, and with the tall grass everywhere things certainly look different. So we had slow progress, but calm, steady, and positive none the less. She had to stop and look at the geldings in the distant field to our left, stop and think about crossing the driveway culvert, stop and look at the cattle to our right, stop and look at some people leading their horse, stop and look at her old dry lot and pasture buddy (who was of course grazing, the utter horror and torture Rose must have been experiencing), stop and look at the old round pen, stop and listen to the creek in the distance, stop and look at the bushes....and then she saw the grass! Well, that motivated her and we finally had some forward motion. She was devastated that I wouldn't let her eat with her bridle on, and then she noticed the creek again. We came within about 25 feet of it, and I just let her soak it in and listen to it. She seemed calm and bored, so we turned around and headed back to the barn. I didn't want to push it on our first time out, all alone, and make her go straight down to the creek. I felt it was very successful little 20 minute trail ride though, so we ended on that good note.
Next time...we'll get in that creek.
Happy trails and swooshing tails!