As 2020 came to an end I was able to enjoy the morning with my horses before work. This photo is actually from a few weekends ago but I thought it was a good opener as this is me, and this is what I do as I groom them and get them ready for a ride. I tie them to the hitching post and they are very well behaved. This is where I tack them up with saddle and bridles. Before I head out on a ride, I often turn them out either in the bigger arena or the small round pen to get them moving. With the nights getting pretty cool, they can get stiff and need some warming up and on this day the static electricity in the air was something I captured on the next photo or two!
Chloe’s tail was not spectacular like Zack’s. I am not sure why his was more static charged and hers was not, but her tail is black and would not be as dazzling in the sun. I get excited over little things such as static electricity and hair! Haha, It reminds me of when you blow up a balloon and then rub your hair and you can pull the balloon away and your hair stands on end going to the balloon. This just happened in the round pen when I was exercising them, so it was a strange sight to see!
It was a crisp morning New Year’s Eve as I prepared these ponies for my ride. It was calm and serene, no wind blowing yet and as I mounted up and headed out I can tell the horses had a nice step to their gait and were ready for the trails. As I turned the corner out to the trail and headed down the street, the horses were walking so well together it was as if we were all in sync and enjoying this beautiful, lovely day. I was able to put Chloe’s reins around the horn of my western saddle, and I looped Zack’s rope around the horn. Not too tight, just lightly looped so that I didn’t lose the rope and it was right there if I needed it and the remainder of the rope was in my other hand as I reached for my camera to record this last day of my 2020 trail ride.
My ponies know these trails so well. I was calm and very relaxed which in turn makes the ponies very relaxed. They can feel your anxieties, your nervousness, your breathing. They can feel you relaxing, your calmness, its their language to feel and recognize things humans don’t even think about. They can feel if you are “there” in the moment, or if your mind wonders and is somewhere else. They are always “in the moment” as they live their lives in the here and now. They are flight animals and it is their instinct to be aware of everything.
They see things you don’t. They hear things you don’t. They know with each step if it is safe or not to continue down the road. They have my life in their hoofs, as I ride on their backs as each step they carry me down the street and around the block in unison as if we are one and connected. Zack is right in step by Chloe’s side. Chloe is like valium to Zack. She brings him peace and calmness as she is the alpha mare and exudes confidence in each step. This is how my beautiful ride went on this gorgeous morning as we completed our ride around the block. I took a video of my ride and want to share it. In the video Zack is walking so nicely and walks up fast almost to pass Chloe! BUT he can’t because he needs to stay back a bit behind. You will see her as he puts his nose towards her, she will nip at him to get him back where he belongs. I don’t let the lead go to long and he will slow a bit and walk where he should. They are very mindful of each other and I try and be just as mindful back to them in our threesome wondering the Norco trails.
I am not to far into my ride when I made this video but to be able to do this with solid horses that feel confident is a testament to what I like to say “Time in the saddle” as with anything you do in life, practice makes perfect. I am so proud of my horses. They bring so much joy to my life and I feel truly blessed and thankful I can share my life with them. I thank my family for their patience and love for them as well. I have enjoyed many rides throughout this last year, and being able to go to the barn and enjoy this is how I have been able to survive the craziness of 2020.
Happy Trail Riding Cowgirl,