Tuesday it was finally dry enough to get out the newly-gulleted (for the third time) huntseat and see how it fit.
Longe warmup was nice. No neck stretcher, just some time on the line to stretch out. I didn't intend on riding on a collected rein, just light contact to see how he was moving in the saddle.
The ride was good. Two fingers' stacked clearance for the entire ride, all three gaits, including a little two point. He was polite, and when I shortened my reins subconsciously, Harley gave into the pressure, and rounded up. Oops, baby. Sorry, dear... Anyways, a polite ride, considering the time off from "real hard work", and the cooler breezy weather.
I could hear deer rumbling around in the treelines throughout the ride, so I stayed on the "treeless" side of the arena at the rail, but rode inside the rail on the treeline side. Behind the pond, at the treeline, I saw a young deer pause at the pond. I saw same deer hop over the edge of the pond. Harley hadn't reacted.
He did, however, react, when same deer sprinted along the backside of the arena. Within a few seconds, he turned completely around, and was 5' farther away down into the arena. I remember thinking, "Out of his face, heels down." One lost stirrup later, I had him stopped, and was still aboard. Nice .. Serious progress to have him spook, I stayed on, and got him under control rather quickly. Huge advantage in my seeing the deer before he did.
After all that, back at the trailer, I paid a close look to his back and sweat marks. Even sweat on both sides, top to bottom. Not all of the side of the saddle up front is touching, but there's a bunch of wool can be added there as well. The same awesome saddle fitting ladies that came for his dressage saddle will be back in town in March, so we'll be scheduling some of their time.