When I got him from his paddock today he was covered in hay dust. His head, face and half of his mane was flecked with bits of hay pieces. He was a real mess! I prettied him up, got him tacked up and decided to do some work in the smalled arena, the one that doesn't slope. I mounted from the ground since I want to practice that more. Lately I've used the mounting block, just cause. I've been trying hard to mount with my foot pointed towards the horses head, parallel to their body, that way I don't poke them in the elbow with my toe as I mount up. I've discovered that's what I've been doing so I'm trying to work on correcting that error. It's almost like starting all over again learning how to mount but you don't get extra points for mounting with elegance at least!
Looking downhill at the larger/sloped arenaI worked a little on posting trot since I'd been working on that with Laurie on Friday. I tried to feel where my feet were and occasionally glanced down to indeed see that I would point my toes down. I worked hard keep my toes in and up. At one point my right foot ached on the outer edge, not sure if it was from the work or the way the boot was hitting me. It was odd.
Willy has been more reluctant to move forwards in the arena the last few times. It takes a lot to ask him to trot and when he starts the trot it's with a slight toss of his head and a begrudging grunt. He doesn't seem to be in pain or have a limp. Is this an older horse thing? We went around the ring in both directions and I feel that my posting and leg position eventually got to the place I wanted. I then swung open the gate and rode around the outside of the bigger arena, trotting a few times and practicing a few halts.
Then I took Willy out to the Eggar road for a "trail" ride. I wanted to see the mountains on this glorious day. The sky was a cobalt blue and the clouds were pure white and wispy. As we reached the crest of the road where we could see a nice view of the front range I sighed in contentment. Oh to be fall and riding a horse, it can't get more perfect than this! The clouds by the mountains were casting a shadow creating a dark purple/blue hue to enrich the hills. It was breath taking. On our way back to the stable we passed the field with the horses and donkey. The donkey always seems to greet us as we pass and this time we got a close up look at the mare and her foal. I need to bring a camera out next time!
Fuzzy and Sweaty Girth areaOnce back at the stable I pulled off Willy's saddle and hopped up on bareback to walk around the stable yard while he cooled down and his girth area dried off. Then I groomed him and led him back to his hay in his run. I ran around to a couple different places in the yard where he had pood, he had to go a lot today! I gave Willy a big hug rubbing his fuzzy coat. Till next Sunday my silly Willy!