Monday, January 3, 2011

Mounting Up...............

Part 1

Dandy walked easily away from Legs. He could have cared less leaving Legs behind and Legs didn't have any concerns about Dandy walking away. Both horses are used to working alone so there just were no complaints.

The first thing we did was shorten stirrups for lytha. With my long legs I knew the stirrups would be an issue because they always are. Rarely anyone that gets into a saddle of mine leaves the stirrups in the original position. I figured getting them as close as possible before lytha mounted Dandy would be more comfortable for her than trying to adjust them while she was sitting atop a strange horse.

Dandy doesn't really care how or when you do that kind of stuff. To him it's all attention and he's glad to be getting it. This past year he's been just hanging out and the horse has NOT been happy about that. I swear I could almost see the horse smile he was SO happy to be getting ridden.

Nrxt we addressed the situation of a helmet. Lytha doesn't ride without one like the wise woman she is. I, however, tend to only ride with one when I'm riding a young horse or one that's being particularly naughty. While I did think Legs might be a little naughty, I was thinking I'd be ok with my helmet so lytha could use it. Fortunately it is one of those helmets that you adjust to fit and I guess it turned out to be the same kind as lytha usuall wears. It only took a minute for her to have the helment adjusted so she felt safe to ride.

Before lytha could get on Dandy, I had her take him up near the fire hydrant to a big bouler so she could use that as a mounting block. With Dandy being at 16 hands, there wasn't much chance she was going to be getting straight on him from the ground. Then I had Dave hold her off side stirrup too so she had that added stablility.

Once she was on we checked her stirrups for length. They turned out to be a bit long but lytha said if we weren't going to be doing lots of trot work, they'd probably be just fine. Since I wasn't even supposed to be riding, I wasn't planning on any trot work, so we just left her stirrups as they were and I checked her reins to be sure they were through the martingale right and she was good to go.

Once I knew I didn't need to do anything more to get lytha settled, I went back to Legs to get him bridled and get myself in the saddle. While I did that lytha took Dandy off towards the barn and away from us, just getting a feel for the horse. I learned later she was doing some testing to see if Dandy really would leave Legs without a fuss. Dandy easily passed that test without even an after thought.

Now, I had not ridden Legs since before I'd gotten sick. It was one thing for me to expect Dandy to be a just get on and go horse but that's not something I've done on a regular basis with Legs. I rarely lunge the horse before I ride but I do tend to lunge when it's been a while since I've ridden.

Because I didn't plan on doing that, I decided I'd better grab a bat just in case Legs decided to be a handful. Then I grabbed another coat and my usual big blue knit hat because I was pretty sure I was going to need it so I didn't freeze. The look wasn't pretty but I was going to be warm. I shoved the bat into my back pocket and headed for my own rock to climb aboard asking Dave to hold my horse.........just in case.

Legs just stood there as I stepped up into the saddle and straightened it. When I tried to get my foot into the stirrup, he did wiggle like he might walk off but stopped as soon as I corrected him with my voice. I adjusted my reins and moved the horse off my leg in a circle in each direction then looked to see if lytha was ready to go. I never did take that bat out of my pocket. Now, Lytha and I were both mounted up and ready to go for a ride.

Before we left, I tried to get Dave to take some pictures for me. I specifically wanted one of the two of us riding off towards the trees that lead down into the trails at Frontier Park. I don't know where Dave's head was but it wasn't into taking my pictures. I got a whole seven pics and not one of them is of us riding off into anywhere. It's a darn good thing that lytha had a camera. She's pretty much the only one with any kind of real pictures of this entire visit.

To be continued..........................

Hitting the Trails

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  1. I really enjoy your stories. You have such a great knack for writing entertaining and informative pieces.
    Thanks for visiting my blog and commenting. Happy New Year!

  2. Hubby is not too dependable here with the camera either, usually gets bored with me and wanders off. Hope it was a nice ride, started off well by the sounds of it

  3. That first pic says it all, looks like fun! My hubby is the same as well, doesnt know what hes supposed to take pics of.

  4. I am loving the fact that there are pictures of this fun ride :) You and Legs look great in that pic, and Dandy looks as cute as ever! It's great to have another Dandy story, too.

  5. I will also join in to say that my husband "forgets" how to use the camera as well. I either get only one or two shots or cut off legs and heads. Looks like you had a great time riding! Dandy looks like a sweet boy.