And now...Back to our regularly scheduled program-LOL.
The last couple of days I have just been bopping around the blog sphere catching up on what everyone has been up too. MiKael over at Rising Rainbow gave me my wake-up call. She is trying to ride nine head of horses-mostly young stuff, from what I understand and needs to do groundwork on nine more. OMG!!
I have been letting myself get sidetracked with all of this spring cleaning and haven't even tried to ride anything but my barrel horse. I do want to go to that barrel racing this weekend. My mom actually suggested that I take another barrel horse, so I thought I better get a few rides on him before we go. He is actually in good shape and our horses get a lot of exercise going up and down the hills in the horse pasture, so I thought sure, why not.
So today-thanks to MiKael-I got my priorities straight.
First on the list was my pin-headed, speed demon-Moon.
Moon has decided that he wants to cheat on his turns. He would love to just throw that hip out, drop that shoulder and whip around the barrel. Ummm...NO!! I have been working on his shoulders and hips at a trot around the house. Today we went to the arena(yea-the WR Rodeo Arena is 5 blocks from my house-lucky me) and worked at the lope. I worked him a little harder than I wanted to because he was being a monster about staying in his right lead in the back. One of my favorite exercises to work on this problem is starting a large circle-about 50-60 ft-in the corner of the arena and just loping him around. When he is relaxed and moving correctly I ride out of the circle in a straight line. The goal is to make the horse stay in his lead and travel a straight line. Moon did not want to stay in his lead, so he got to keep doing it until he did. As soon as he maintained his lead in a straight line-we quit.
Next up was Megan's barrel horse in training-Rip.
Now Rip is just about as broke as they come. He is extremely laid back and the perfect horse for Megan. However, he has NO right lead. I doubt my brother ever asked him for a lead in the pasture or when he used him for team roping. I love my brother-but a good trainer he is not. A good team roper he is. Megan has been working on shoulders in and out and two tracking to get Rip more responsive to cues but just couldn't get him tipped into that right lead. Today - SUCCESS. I got him into his right lead with little trouble the first time I asked. Boy is he rough in that lead. It is going to take a lot practice for him to get comfortable. I cannot take credit for him picking the lead up though-Megan did all of the work-I just helped him tip over the edge.
The day was young so I headed to mom's to ride the other barrel horse. As pretty as my mom & step-dad's place is...I could never live out there. The wind blows all the time. Today was no exception.
So I decided to groom a couple of horses and trim some feet.
Turk(the jerk) just happened to be in the pen closest to the barn.
Much elbow grease and four trimmed feet later, I saddled him and left him to "soak" awhile. Turk is going to be a barrel horse too. His personality reminds me a lot of Moon. I don't know if this makes me love him or hate him. Unlike Moon, I wouldn't want to pull him out of the pasture, jerk a cinch(so to speak) and try to ride off. I am pretty sure I would end up on my head. He is one of those horses who just can't help but be spooky. Thankfully, he gets a little better the more you handle him.
And then there is Leo.
By the time I got Leo up, brushed to within an inch of his life and his front feet trimmed(my back gave out-I am such a wuss) the wind had gone down enough to go for a ride. Leo is a finished head, heel, break-away and barrel horse. I love him to death. He has to be one of the nicest horses I have ever ridden. However, he is 15 this year and seems to be getting stiffer. Don't we all with age? So I won't be taking him to the barrel racing this weekend. We have several weeks of bending and flexing ahead of us to get him limbered back up. I can't wait to get a run on this guy.