Didn't take us long to try out the new saddle. By the next day! It's just taken me a long time to get it posted-LOL.
Megan loves it!...
Although, I think her stirrups were still a little too long and she was getting cold (hence the crabby look on her face. Oh, wait, maybe it was just because she was cold and I kept making her stop to take pics-LOL). Old Turkey (pun intended) looks pretty comfortable in this picture, but I think bugging out had taken it's toll and he was tired.
Turk is not a good ranch horse to begin with. He never did get the whole relax and cover country part. What can I say, the horse was bred to go to the track and it was a sad trick of fate that he ended up with us instead. Not that a lot of race-bred horses don't can't make good ranch horses, it just wasn't in Turk.
Getting him past our neighbor's was indeed eventful.
Apparently, s.p.o.t.t.e.d. cows are horrifying!
(At this point, you have to imagine pictures, because I wasn't about to pull out my camera and risk dropping it)
To make matter's worse, on the other side of the road, that neighbor has a monstrous pair of longhorns. I suspect the 'little' one has a horn spread of at least 6-7'. The other one is even bigger. It didn't help matters that they ran to the fence to check us out. Turk skittered from one side of the road to the other, not sure of who to be more terrified of, spotted cows or huge, horned beasties. I guess it depended on which way his head was turned.
I had better luck as I was on Spooks, the black horse. But even he was giving these unknown, possibly predatory animals the once over. And I was bareback! (I'm trying to get my legs in shape...Oww, oww, oww!)
Heaven helped the poor paint horse and he made it through that particularly scary patch. Megan was of no use to him because she was laughing her fool head off. Oiy Vey!
That giggling abruptly came to an end though when just a wee bit down the road we ran into something that absolutely terrified BOTH horses.
Neither of these horses have ever seen goats before and I swear to heaven, I thought they were both going to jump in the irrigation canal on the other side of the road to get away from them. No fear folks, Meg and I are part chicken. We have absolutely no qualms about bailing. Although, I would have hated to see Turk land upside down on top of the new saddle. That is not my idea of breaking one in!
The goats on the other hand, obviously love horses and happily ran to the fence to Blaahhh at us.
It was a little embarrassing because the owner of the goats was watching the whole fiasco. Thankfully, he was an intelligent man and he stopped and dropped the tree branch he had been dragging behind him. I'm pretty sure that would have been our death knell.
That was quite the experience for those two ponies. But I am happy to say, that by the time we came back and ran that little gauntlet of fear again, it was a lot less exciting. Turk was still pretty sure those spotted cows were aliens and he kept a careful eye on them to make sure they didn't get any closer than they already were. No really, it was just because they were s.p.o.t.t.e.d. that had him freaked out. We walked past 2 separate herds of normal Angus and Baldy cows and he didn't even blink. He's used to seeing those kind of cattle.
Monday, I got the chance to slap that new saddle on Moon and we went for a little trek out back. I am so tickled with how good Moon feels. I started him on Moorman's Healthy Glo (it's a balanced rice bran and flax supplement) around the first of the year and I just cannot believe how much stronger and better this horse feels. When I turn him out, he bucks and plays. Moon has NEVER bucked and played! And he is actually walking out with energy. Moon NEVER walked with energy! Whoo-Hooo for rice bran!!!
After about an hour and a half ride, this is how the saddle ended up...
Moon only moved it about an inch back, even after going up and down a few little hills in the desert behind us. That is remarkable!!! The only other saddle I have ever used on him that doesn't slide back is the roping saddle. We are golden!!
The weather has been beautiful here and I have been riding every day. I do believe the ponies are happy to be back to doing something...and back on their grain. I have a feeling this is going to be a good year with the ponies.