Horse Life

Weekend Adventures

We’ll start with Thursday.

Friday we were going to Tryon for some XC schooling, so Thursday night I wanted to keep it light since we had jumped on Wednesday (where P was phenomenal). I had an idea of what I wanted to do, so I dragged Husband to the barn in case of a medical emergency, but I shouldn’t have worried.

**You HAVE to listen with the sound on for Husband’s commentary.

My horse is awesome. And so, so unimpressed with my shenanigans.

Friday morning, we hauled 2 hours to F.E.N.C.E. in Tryon for some XC schooling with Sara and her trainer, J. Since schooling at Windridge was such a success with mostly the 2’3″ fences + a smattering of BN fences, my hope for the day was to do mostly BN fences with at least one Novice fence.

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We started warming up in the field and a few minutes into trotting, P stumbled slightly, then kept going. A few seconds later, Sara asked J to pick up a horse shoe that was on the ground. I turned around and…sure enough, right where P stumbled. J picked up his feet and lo and behold, front right was missing.

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So we drove 2 hours for 6 minutes of warming up. Cool.

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But then I remembered that there was a hunter show going on, so J drove down to the show office to see if they had a farrier. She was able to get a farrier who was there watching his granddaughter compete and just so happened to have his truck there to come out to the XC course to tack back on the shoe. Sorry, P.

 

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PC: Sara

 

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Before we all say “Awww, what a kind, old nice farrier,” let me tell you he charged me SIXTY DOLLARS for his 5 minutes of tacking on the shoe. I almost ripped it back off when he told me the charge.

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But instead, I cried a little inside and got back on my horse.

THEN a schoolbus full of children pulled up, and the kids went traipsing through the woods. Excellent.

 

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Very concerned about the endless line of children

 

Despite his absolute belief that this was a bad idea, P warmed up just fine. This time with bell boots that I found in my trailer.

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The kids were in the woods just to the left of this log, and while P handled himself just fine, the next jump- the tiniest green table you’ve ever seen, was cause for alarm.

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It took well over a minute for him just to approach the thing. I was so disappointed. This was supposed to be WARMUP for BN/N fences. He finally jumped it, but I won’t lie- I was a little crushed.

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Then put the warmup log and green box together.

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Next we made our way to a little feeder jump. Again, P was super concerned about the children and refused at first.

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Then jumped. Back to old Pilgrim ways, I suppose.

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Then we headed to the water, which thank goodness wasn’t an issue. Not that it ever has been, but you never know with P.

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And then I turned off my helmet cam to save battery, and forgot to turn it back on for a good long time.

 

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This is how hard I fail at helmet cams

 

P despised the skinny box and gave me more problems there than it was worth.

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The tiniest up bank, despite up banks never being an issue before, including the BN/N one he was fine with 2 weeks ago, caused much snorting and backing away. Until it didn’t.

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So we strung together the bank to a small red table. And that went ok.

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At this point, I was frustrated. We’d been at this for awhile, and P was acting like he’d never been on an XC course before, let alone dominated ALL THE XC JUMPS THIS ENTIRE MONTH.

I’ve said it before, but P has never been the most fun to school in a group with. He doesn’t do well with the jump, stop, wait, rinse and repeat. And while he’s fine when it’s just him and I, even if we’re in a sea of strange horses/riders at shows, he seems to know when we’re with friends and gets very attached to the other horses we’re with. So J sent us to the beginning to string together a course- the feeder, through the water, over the box, up the bank, and over the red table.

And, well, it worked. P seemed to have found his mojo. Noted.

Then we continued up the super steep hill to a BN rolltop. It was a little uneven terrain, which caused some steering issues, but he got over it.

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Why does that N fence next to ours look so tiny in pictures and yet so MASSIVE in real life?

 

Then hit up the final part of the course so Sara and Gem could jump some jumps. They’d been incredibly patient (Ok, Sara was, Gem…not so much!) waiting for P and I to get our acts together.

We hopped over a little log pile a few times each way. And thankfully there were no refusals here. Even though it’s tiny, P doesn’t discriminate against height when it comes to stopping at jumps.

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So then headed to the other side of the brush to jump another little red table.

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And then we decided that P needed one more small course to finish up. We started with the little log pile going downhill, to the NOVICE (finally) rolltop, bending line to the BN rolltop.

Individually schooling it, he kind of sucked. Or maybe it was me. When I went past the N rolltop, I had to avert my eyes. The thing looked un-jumpable.

But put it together and…voila!

 

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That right drift through…sigh

 

P got a rest day on Saturday, then Sunday we headed to Trainer B’s to work on…dun, dun, dun, dun, one strides, since last week P wasn’t too confident about that.

 

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From last week…rainbows and liverpools: cool. One strides? HARD NOPE.

 

After jumping the 2’6″ gate separately, P refused the oxer (2’6″) multiple times, before sucking back through the exercise.

$1 million to anyone who can guess what Trainer B told me?

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Kidding. I won’t actually give you $1 million because it’s too easy. P needs to be more forward.

Wait, where have I heard that before?

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Oh yeah, Trainer B. Because the poor guy has to tell me that about 10,000 times per lesson.

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But each time we went through, it got better and better. Both ways. So Trainer B started the whole decorating and adjusting of jump cups stuff that he likes to do. I CAN SEE YOU RUNNING WITH THE ADDITIONAL POLE, TRAINER B.

When we finished, P had jumped the 2’6 (or maybe it was 2’9″ by the end, I can’t remember) oxer to the 3′ (or 3’3″- remember, these heights are interchangeable to Trainer B) gate. And rocked it. I pushed him past my comfort zone and he responded. Even the owner of the barn that Trainer B trains out of said we looked way different than when we first started with Trainer B. In a good way.

 

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I couldn’t quite look at the ginormous gate with both eyes.

 

I love it.

And despite our non-perfectness, I guess I still love him too.

 

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P in his permanent bell boots with pasture mate Sandero giving the side eye.

 

 

 

20 thoughts on “Weekend Adventures”

  1. omg the bridleless is hilarious. And P knows like me that CHILDREN ARE EVIL and will eat gray horses (or buckskins). Remember my tale of Fair Hill and the track kids running down the hill toward us (like hundreds of kids)… Remus looked for them ALL day even when he was out of sight of them because obviously EVIL CHILDREN! HA HA HA glad you got him listening and got him jumping. So sorry he got sidetracked at first. GRHHH

    Cannot believe he lost his shoe right when you got there and lol on the farrier. HA he was like paid for lunch and dinner that day. CHA CHING! 🙂

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  2. Omg that damn feeder jump!!! You have no idea how many times that seemingly insignificant jump has caused heart breaks… it’s gotten better since they put pine straw on top though, used to be little gravel rocks. I still give it the stare down every time I go by it 😂
    But glad the XC outing ended well! And Chimi use to be TERRIBLE about XC schooling just like P. Courses, fine, jump and stop, nope. It’s really kinda funny bc I read your blog and hear P stories and I’m like yep, Chimi did that too 🙂

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    1. Haha, really?? I’d think it’d be worse with rocks…looking back, every jump P refused at first had hay scattered around it. You’d think he’d actually like that since you can typically find him with his face stuffed in his haynet 😂 every time you say “Chimi used to do that” it makes me sooo hopeful that P will turn out like him! 🤞🤞

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  3. I knew a girl who ran her horse prelim, but the horse was impossible to school XC the traditional way. What she ended up doing was basically running courses in steps of difficulty. So she would start on the N course, then flow into the T course then the P course and loop back to whatever questions she wanted to tackle. It’s funny how some of their minds work, but it looks like you and P are finding solutions!

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    1. Hope so! That’s pretty clever of the one girl. I think from now on I’m going to warm up and go straight for the courses, rather than school individual fences and see what happens!

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  4. You guys look good though! Some days with those distractions things just don’t work how you’ve planned. I’ve had those days with Amber for sure, and I’m sure we all have. But looking at the GIFs and helmet cam, I’d definitely say you guys nailed them once you got over them! And that’s so great to get that compliment from the barn owner! I’d say you two have improved as well 🙂

    And boo on the $60! Wow. I mean, maybe that was because he wasn’t there “working” the show but like….DAMN. I’d’ve just about ripped that shoe back off, too.

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  5. lol having just fallen off at a miniaturized version of that feeder jump…. i feel your pain haha. clever about finding the farrier to get the shoe on and glad you were able to proceed with a pretty solid xc school and jump lesson!!

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  6. The start and stop is a bit frustrating. Gem was enjoying all the breaks to eat grass though. It was the getting back to work that is hard for her. She basically figured she was done at every break then got mad when I had her work again.

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  7. He was so relaxed bridleless that his bottom lip was wobbling. I had to go back a few seconds because I was like, what is going on with P’s face.

    I wonder if P psychs himself out like us humans do when he has time to think about the jumps ahead and around with the stop/go of schooling with a group.

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    1. Oh ya, P and his lower lip. That thing is always flapping, it’s hilarious!

      I’m not sure if he’s psyching himself out of if he just gets out of “go mode.” He doesn’t really care when anyone else is jumping, he just seems to take offense when we hang out for a few minutes, then I’m all, “GO” and P’s like, “Ehhhh, nah.”

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  8. Saint when bridleless yet afraid of children. Freaking horses lol

    And I’m still rolling over in pain about what the farrier charged. Jeeeebussss. SO much.

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