Loving Summertime

I had a couple of great morning beach rides two days ago. Feeling more confident after Rogo's good behavior when off property at the clinic, I took him on his longest hack yet, doubling our previous distance. We started out with practicing some basics in the arena - walk / trot / walk transitions, circles, trot / canter / trot (needs lots of work), etc. Then we went to the beach. Rogo is so cute. He wants very much to go through the open gate heading to the beach and keeps trying to head there. When we do go, he gets quite hesitant for the first few steps once he's through the gate. Then he gets with the program and off we go. I really trotted out going up the beach this time, but no cantering yet. I'm a big old chicken. I know he'll be fine, but slow and steady. Too many times I've pushed the envelope when things were going well, until they weren't going well. The sand was quite deep (wet) so it's good exercise as long as we don't over do it. We walk all the way home. About 2/3 of the way home I realized I was sitting into him wiht open hips. Yeah! I don't realize I'm not until I feel the difference. This brings me to saddle fit:
I had his saddle adjusted Fri. night at the clinic. I was quite bouncey (more than usual) when I rode there, but put it down to nerves. To work on it I tried to ride without stirrups before the beach ride and couldn't do it at all! Not even a slow trot, which I'd easily done before. After I got back from my beach ride I saw on his saddle pad that I was putting weight up front, not under my seat - bad and not me (I have many bad habits but I put my weight on my seat). I emailed the saddle fitter and she told me she'd put quite a bit of air in it (It's a WOW with air instead of flocking) and that it would make me bouncier. Not what I need! So now I'll give it a couple of rides and see what happens. She may need to adjust it again. On the plus side, Rogo is developing his topline nicely and likes his saddle so we'll sort it out.
After riding Rogo I rode Savanah bareback - also starting with some ring work (mostly trot / canter/ trot to try to help me get a better feel for Rogo). Then she and I headed to the beach. What a blast she is to ride - forward, but safe, with a nice comfy back for bareback. We did lots of trot and canter, with me focussing on balancing with my core and not squeezing my legs. I think I do okay on her. Why can't I transfer my seat to Rogo??? She was a sweety and seemed to enjoy the outing too.
Yesterday I rode Rogo in Doug's saddle (an Albion) to see if it made a difference. I can sit his trot better, so I may need some air taken out of mine. I also worked on Rogo's carriage and trying to ride more with my seat and legs. Looking where I go seems to be quite a help with this but anything faster than a walk still needs too much hand.
I'm really excite about dressage camp coming up the first week of Aug. Nervous as hell too.


Oak Creek Ranch said…
What a fun day you had riding two horses on the beach! I'm envious - its a 2.5h trailer haul to the closest beach that allows horses so we don't do it much. I had to laugh about Rogo trying to leave the arena and then when he had permission, hesitating. When do you leave for dressage camp? I hope you'll have access to a computer - I want to hear all about it.
Hurricanes12 said…
riding on the beach sounds amazing right now, rogo is so funny! ♥

i agree with annette, dressage camp sounds so interesting! :)
Carol said…
My dressage camp is Aug. 1 to 5. I'm nervous about it, but excited too.
Achieve1dream said…
I love that you can go ride on the beach whenever you want. So fun!

I hope taking some air out helps with the saddle issues. It's so much easier to deal with our fit than the horse's though. I'm glad it fits him so well. :) I'm worried about having to deal with that when Chrome is older hehe. He's only two and already a wide in my Wintec. I hope I don't have to special order one.

I can't wait to hear about dressage camp. Do you have more pictures from the clinic?