This morning I started by soaping my one item of leather tack I actually use, the nice lightweight leather Abetta trail saddle I bought off of my friend, J, Chief's owner. A non-horsey friend, A, was coming over to have a go at riding, so the saddle needed a little love to be guest-friendly. Cleaning the saddle led to about an hour and a half of serious tack room TLC. I pulled down the saddle racks that were hanging all wonky from crappily hammered nails and screwed them up again all straight with good sturdy mounting screws. Sprayed down and cleaned all the scary (GIANT SPIDER FILLED) back corners behind the saw horse and feed cans, and resurrected a nice little grooming bag that I can fill with something useful for rides. More useful than the spiders and hay it was cultivating at the back of the tack area, anyway. Cleaned and put away the bale bag and winter blankets and cleaned all the feed pans and scoops, did a few minor Easyboot repairs..
It was deeply satisfying and looks pretty darn good now, I think!
A arrived around 11:30 and we pale folk sun-screened up and went to catch our steeds. I wanted to work Blaze a little in the round pen first to make sure he was feeling good and moving well since his chiropractic adjustment on Monday. He lunged nicely, aside from a few testy moments (I swear Blaze only gets testy with me in the arena or round pen), and I tacked him up and put A on him for a few goes around the round pen to figure out the controls and settle in a little. She has ridden him one other time just in the arena and was ready to see a little countryside.
Figuring out the Controls:
I worked Desire in the round pen to make sure she was fine after her rather drastic adjustment and I must say that working her in that little pen is like trying to test drive a Ferrari on a Go-Kart track. Yeah, it might be doable, but the corners are a little tight and it would go nicer traveling at higher speeds in open spaces for longer distances. Still she moved out well so I swapped the Specialized over to her fitting set up, tied on a lead rope just in case, grabbed the camera, and we headed out on the dirt road for a short trail ride.
Crossing the bridge:
Viewing the world from between Miss D's ears again!
Love this pic!
Keeping up that good posture:
Blaze tested her a little and does walk MUCH slower than Desire in general, but painfully slowly if you don't boss him a bit. After a mile or so I put the lead rope on him so I could control his speed and she could just relax and get used to the feel of being in the saddle. Things went smoother then and it was a nice mellow ride, perfect for Blaze and Desire to stretch their muscles after their adjustments but not strenuous.
A's husband had gone off fishing with mine, so after riding we drove down and met them for a good dinner at the local brewery. A great way to spend a Sunday!