With four horses in tow, this winter is definitely being a tricky one. But I am finding that now I have a plan, things are running a lot smoother than they were. I am concentrating on my two rehab projects and letting my lovely sharer ride my youngster and my mare is out in her holiday paddock enjoying the quiet life for a while.
The two rehab projects each need riding at least 5 times a week, preferably more and its a challenge with a regular job also, but we are making headway with the lighter nights. Having taken one to a sponsored ride this weekend, he was an absolute superstar and I couldn't be more pleased with him. He may have some naughty habits which are slowly lessening (even after only 5 weeks) but god can that horse job, anything, from any stride of any size, he is a pleasure.
Yesterday was one of the most awaited days of the year at RAF Halton Sponsored Ride in Buckinghamshire - http://www.haltonride.org.uk/. It is a brilliant course of 50 jumps over 8 miles. You can go at your own pace, in a group and its perfect for in-experienced horses to find their feet. The jumps are all optional and range from 2 foot in height to 3’6 for the more confident jumpers.
Well I had the time of my life as usual. My group was made up of a bunch of brilliant friends who are all as crazy as heck and everyone massively enjoyed the day. Not a single element of bad behaviour and the horse can jump the hind legs off a donkey to say the least, whether he is in front or behind that beasty can leap.
As we cantered along the gorgeous routes, hip flasks in hand, shouting and laughing at each others various steeds throwing themselves around, you really cannot beat it. All the prep, getting horseboxes organised, mixing various amounts of whiskey and cherry brandy combined with cleaning tack and loading/unloading lorries, it’s all food for the soul and super fun, I can’t recommend it enough.
This particular chap still has a long way to go in his re-training but it’s great to see progress in the 5 weeks since he arrived with me. From death’s door to hedge hopping in a few weeks, definitely glad this guy has got a second chance.
Next ride is West Wycombe on the 28th March, cannot wait !!