Tuesday, January 8, 2013


I set up a low crossrail, a higher crossrail, a set of three trot poles, alternating ends elevated 4", and one pole alone, elevated 8" both ends.  The last time I attempted this mess with Harley, he stomped through the fences, and knocked down more than I care to admit.

Last night, hop hop hop.  I warmed him up in the side reins to stretch his body and continue his new muscle training.  When I mounted, he walked off nose tucked and body up and round.  As he reached down and out, looking for the bit, he was still trying to be "dressage pony".  Harley found the contact, on a fairly loose rein, and settled nicely.  We must have gone over each of thsoe obstacles, spread out over the arena in various places, a dozen times each way.  I worked him evenly, trotting over everything.  Didn't see a reason to force the canter, since there wasn't much set up for that.  It's something to work up to, for sure.  Nothing was knocked down, nothing stumbled over, and when we completed the cavaletti work, everything was set just as when we started. 

A bit of canter on the dressage rein, more transitions than actual canter, and he was done for the day.  About 40 minutes total, since every pole he saw was "clear", I didn't see a reason to insist on more.

Romeo?  Snarly grouch.  He was more concerned with the blowing trees and weeds (and the dogs he could hear and not see next door) than with my leg or seat.  So I pointed him at the trot poles.  "That oughta wake him up."  Instead, it woke me up.  Thump, splat.  Mo knocked down *every* single pole he saw.  The three trot poles?  Knocked down and tipped over.  The 8" vertical rail alone?  Knocked down and rolled away.  Total monster.

So he worked.  Hard.  Lots of long trot.  Quite a bit more canter than he's done since the injury.  His head was high in the sky, and I realized in the long trot/canter work, Romeo is ready to go back to his snaffle ring bit, and "get back to work". 

Both boys will be back in action after the heavy rains that start today and finish late Wednesday.  Well, after the rains finish, and the puddles soak into the ground. 

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