Can You Guess What Caused This?

I rode Rogo this morning, with a saddle since Doug wasn't here to lunge me bare back and Rogo is still too excited about it to go without a lunge line. We warmed up with 20 meter circles at the trot and canter both ways, and 1/4 line trot loops and things went great. I worked at keeping my left hand quiet and down, relaxing my hips, and keeping my legs still. Rogo is staying nicely forward for me.
After the warm up I started practicing the canter parts of Training Level test 3, but Rogo kept turning sideways almost into a half pass. What on earth? There wasn't any spookiness, but he was cantering at  a 45 degree angle! I tried trot - same thing. It was just bizarre. Walk - same thing. Back to canter and sideways it was. Have you guessed the cause yet? I didn't until we halted, and I was on him. We halted and he turned almost 90 degrees. I pushed him forward, straightened him out and asked for halt again. Again he whipped his hind quarters around to face another direction. Then the light bulb came on - yes - a very windy rain squall had blown in while we were working and he was trying to put his hind quarters into the wind and rain! Ha ha, he's so funny. He has far higher expectations of my common sense than is warranted. Why would we be staying out in the rain? Why would we be riding into it? Clearly the thing to do is turn ass end into in and hunker down.
To his credit he didn't try to head for the barn or stop working at all, he just wanted to get into a proper wind and rain position :)  I hadn't realized it, but I haven't ridden him in heavy wind/rain outside before. When it started raining I thought "this could happen at a show, so I'll stay out for a few minutes", but I still didn't put two and two together re the unaided and unasked for lateral work until we did a couple of halts. Poor baby didn't want rain driving into his eyes and I don't blame him. He was just following his instincts.
Doug came back by the end of the ride and although I didn't know it he was standing in the upstairs door laughing and taking pictures. Here's one of us walking in so you can see the slightly disgusted look on Rogo's face :)

You can also see I lost a shoe (it's in my hand). I was expecting this to happen with all the rain we've had - lots of deep mud in places. The call is in to the farrier.


TBDancer said…
My OTTB is happy in the rain ONLY if we're riding (so I'm getting wet, too). If he's in the turnout and the rain starts, he canters because I guess that prevents "melting." Thank goodness our boys aren't spoiled, huh? Sorry about the shoe but we've ALL been there, done that. I bet shoers LOVE the rain ;o)
Annette said…
That's a great picture. He almost looks like he is trying to swing his hind end over there too. Wonderful that Doug was snapping pictures - I never would have guessed the reason, but sure makes sense.
Carol said…
Thanks for the comments. Too funny about cantering preventing melting :) Our horses can go in and out on their own, and we laugh at Rogo because at the first sprinkle he bustles right inside and spends the duration peeking out. Savanah loves to be out in the rain, or any conditions except heat for that matter. Yes, Annette - good analysis - he was still trying to swing his hind quarters over in the picture :)
Bless Rogo's heart - that is too darn cute Carol ;)
Funny guy, amazing how their instincts click in. Great picture, it does look like he's not enjoying the rain. Very cute. Too bad about the shoe.
we've a had a lot of soggy weather in the SE, too.... i've taken the philosophy of "joining the rain, instead of running..." Good for you for sticking it out!
Anonymous said…
How funny! horses have wonderful ways of surprising us
Lexa said…
Haha awww poor Rogo. The look on his face is the same look that my dogs make when they go outside in the rain!
Jan said…
Carol, Your Rogo is so smart! He knows which way to turn in the rain and wind! Glad you figured it out. Sounds like a very good session for both of you- good work!
achieve1dream said…
Hehehe that is too funny. Rogo is smart. :D