Tuesday, December 3, 2013

The New Schedule

(pronounced in the British version "shedule" just for fun)

I'm officially a night owl now, working from 3pm till midnight, not sure if I love it, but this morning was sure awesome.

I had so much fun with my ride with Killian, I decided to repeat the path with Trax today.

When we first left the house he plodded along like an old plow horse, and I found myself wondering what happened to my freight train of a horse, that never slowed down for anything.  I contemplated whether it is because he no longer gets alfalfa at every meal, or if he is getting ridden more, or if it is something else.

When we got to the fence to enter the desert, he stopped and stood like a gentleman and waited for me to dismount and open the gate.  Then he stood quietly while I remounted.  Then I kicked him up to an easy trot and we headed straight out. Well straight is truly a relative term. We did lots of zig-zagging around trees, working off of my leg and trying to just barely touch the rein.  He attempted to slow down a couple of times, which to me is highly unusual, and once again I found myself contemplating the reasons why.

There are lots of washes to go up and down and I have changed from looking for the lowest spot to cross, to finding spots that are a little more challenging for us.  Some are steep enough that I won't try it, but the moderate ones were just right.   Plus we did a little deep sand walking the length of the washes.

Our destination was the same water hole I took Killian to the other day.  There is a large berm/ bank on one side and big shady trees all around.  One one side there is a ditch or ravine, not real deep, but deep enough to simulate a stream to cross.  We crossed that several times, and then even walked up and down the length of it, right up the middle.  He did not love it, but he didn't fight me too hard either, which made me very very happy.  

I have video of it too which I sent to Mark Keil a little later.  He texted me back and said, "Wow he acts like a broke horse!"  I laughed and then replied, "Hey lets not go putting labels on him now."  Then I had a thought.  So I texted him again, "If I ever sell him I can put that in the ad. Paint horse for sale, lots of go, very little stop, occasionally acts like a broke horse."  We both laughed pretty hard about that one.

After our water dance we headed through some trees and around to our resting spot. I got off of him and we took a break.

"What??? No Snacks?"

Naturally while sitting there I played with my camera

 Then we had the gratuitous photo shoot.  He is not fond of photo shoots.

"Shhhhh, I'm napping"

"Did you hear that?  I think it was a Puma!"

Then we headed back towards home, and the reasons for him dragging butt on the way out was revealed.  My run away freight train has become a little barn sour.  He was all ready to beat feet now. 

But not before we stopped for one more photo shoot. 

We saw a hawk in a tree on the way home, and I tried to get a picture but my phone does not have a zoom.

As we got close to the gate I decided to go home a different way, and when we hit flat open ground where I could see potential gopher dens, I let him canter a little.


The freight train was back and was headed straight for town.  I kept asking him to slow down and rate, he kept asking for more rein and ALL of his head.  We finally agreed on a a one rein stop and a trot from there on out.  As we went out the gate and down the busy road, he was a bit spookier than usual, then we saw a burro and a pony and he lost his mind. I had to move him to the other side of the road to keep us from getting hit by traffic.   I guess burro's must really smell different than horses, because he sure freaks out about them.

Once we got home he had a nice bath and a roll in the pasture and in his eyes life was good again.

Here is the path we took.  It doesn't seem like near as far on the picture as it seems on the ground.

This skinny black line is our approx path. The fat black lines is where I blacked out the street names.


  1. I pinned your gorgeous panorama! You live in such a beautiful place!

  2. Love the panoramic pics! Yeah my rule when riding out was trot and canter on the way out and walk on the way back. At least that was the rule with horses who rushed coming home. I certainly never trotted or cantered the last bit. Makes them too hot next time in the same spot.

    1. I agree, I don't very often let him canter on the way home, and darn sure won't make that mistake again. First time he has ever been obviously barn sour.

  3. Breathtaking photos, what a great ride!

  4. Oh my goodness, you have a ways to go on streets. You can't get out to the desert directly behind you on the right of the map, I'm assuming? Is that federal land or what? My husband was talking about a house up against the Superstitions with 11 acres for sale, but it's difficult to get out there on horseback. I like the way our city places horse gates every few hundred yards around the land. Fun photo shoot. Nice job.

    1. Yes there is some neighborhood riding to get to the gate that is always open. I have the option of riding down the busier road, which is shorter, but a bit more traffic, or going through the neighborhood which is a little longer, but very quiet. The only thing I have to deal with on that route is an occasional dog. Luckily my horses are pretty good about traffic and dogs, because we had the same problem in WY as well.

      There is a gate almost directly behind our house but it is locked and the only person who has the key only rides at specific times. She used to be able to loan the key out, but too many people abused the privilege and the man who holds the lease on that section of property changed the lock. She talked him in to giving her another key, but she does not loan it out now.

  5. He does stand nicely ground tied, doesn't he. Lucky you having a nice place to ride in the winter.

    1. Yes he ground ties fantastic unless we are in the middle of a Ranch Horse Show and it is required as part of the trail pattern. LOL

  6. Nice series of photographs and loved the story. I know a few tales where the rider was left riderless and the horse went home for a scoop of oats.

  7. I LOVE the pictures! So gorgeous!

    My sister had a horse that was scared of donkeys. If the donkey was grazing or had it's ears back she thought it was a horse, but as soon as the ears came up she would spin and bolt.... yeah weird horse.

  8. I have yet to get out to the northern parts... *sigh* The neighborhood is pretty quiet and the drivers courteous. It's the people who cut through it that are rude and drive like idiots. One of these days we will have to ride out together.

  9. Looks like a wonderful place to ride and a great photo shoot area at the end. I feel like I haven't rode out in so long! But Trax being so slow out reminds me of Jessie, the only time she doesn't try and walk off as I am getting on is if we are riding out alone, lol.