Monday, May 23, 2011

Moving forward with Starlight and Dee

You horse people will understand the guarded elation I’m feeling about my green mares, Starlight and Dee.  They are doing so well with their training that I’m elated, but it’s guarded because I have experienced enough hard knocks, literally, when training horses that I know hubris and assumptions can hurt.

Blurry, but it shows Dee's trot.
But so far, so good.  Last night, I rode Starlight on what I think I can fairly term an actual trail ride.  We went all around our big field, around the pond, down the dirt road that goes around part of the pasture, then up the pipeline right-of-way, to the car road, along the road, then back down our driveway to home. 

We even went  past the last remaining cow thugs  (only called “last remaining” because my neighbor has caught the rest of them and tucked them safely away in their corral. Not because they have been eaten)!

She was just perfect.  I even dismounted at one point and got back on from the ground, which I haven’t done with her before.

The reason I dismounted is that we were about to cross a tiny, six-inch wide rivulet of water flowing in a bed about eight inches deep and two feet wide.  Really little, right?  Well, I could tell Starlight figured I was asking her to leap over the Grand Canyon, so I dismounted, stepped over it and asked her to follow.

Smart move!  She leapt it like it was five feet high.   But that was the most excitement we had during this fun, walk-trot ride.

As for Dee, the other night I had asked her for a trot, and she gave me a few steps and the start of a bolt, then, when asked again, a few lethargic trot steps.   I told my husband,  “Watch, when I ask for it the next time I ride her, she’ll trot right out.”

Happy after a fun ride on Dee
OK, that was an assumption, which we know are dangerous, but in this case, I was right!  I rode her down the hill and around the pond, then asked for the trot up the hill. 

Hot damn!  She trotted right out with a nice long stride.  She has a lot of movement, that one, more than I’m used to with Hudson and Starlight, who are fairly short-strided.  I was trying to keep up with her and she did give me a little buck as if to say, “What are you doing up there, you sloppy sack of potatoes?”

But it was a big success and I’m really excited to keep going with her.   Both of them, really.  Starlight is a wily gal who has “I chase cows” all over her, so I’m thinking of starting to learn how to do something like Reined Cow Horse with her.  That would be entirely new to me, being an English-based Pony Clubber of old.

Dee is the scopey one who will carry my butt over some fences.

But before we head off for fame and fortune, I’m just looking to get the freshness off them and nail a good walk, trot and canter.  Little steps!


  1. YAY! Big, happy, thrilled-for-you YAY!

  2. Thanks, Trish! What I love about the pictures on this post is the happy look on Dee's face.