Loping up hills. - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 22 Old 11-21-2008, 06:36 PM
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Red face

I'll put my two cents in, I used to have a mare that would lope up as well but, when I got educated all I ever hear from any professional trainer is that they should walk up the hill. As stated here before-mostly for safety reasons. You can re-teach him it just takes a little while. For example, I later had a gelding we loped up this long hill not realy all that steep, but he spooked (woods on the right). Well I don't have to tell you that I was not able to hold on. He jumped sideways and I was not expecting it. I took a pretty hard fall.
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post #12 of 22 Old 11-21-2008, 06:42 PM Thread Starter
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If I had a horse in front of me he would just lope super slow and right behind them. I never do half-halts with my horses so when I pull back at all it means stop unless I`m asking them to slow down to a walk.
As for the bit I will try to upload a picture that looks kinda like the bit I use. but I`m not that sure how to do it so it might not work.
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post #13 of 22 Old 11-21-2008, 07:12 PM
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it might be that he doesn't need that strong of a bit on the trails. Also, this is just my personal preference, but I don't like riding with a shank bit because I've seen a horse get it caught in a tree. Not a fun day.

If you asked your horse to go, which gait would he choose? Just like in an arena? Sounds like he perfers the lope than any other gait. I personally would be alright with my horse loping up the hill, but that's me. I guess it's on personal preference on what you like your horse to do.

Satrider, I hope you were alright, but that could have happened at any gait.
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post #14 of 22 Old 11-21-2008, 07:47 PM Thread Starter
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Ya I think that I may just leave it be but I'll see how I feel after I ride him again before I decide.
So what bit would you recomend then? He used to be on a snaffle but he wasnt responding like he should have so I changed it. I know I will never use a bit that is solid through the mouth which is why I liked this one because it still looks like a snaffle other than the shanks.
Just a note about myself. I love to ride but everything I know is self taught and through some horse training videos that I use more for training myself than my horse lol. I don't know much about all the equipment out there and I don't have anyone to teach me other than myself. On the other hand, if you put me on a horse that reared/bucked/is just plan silly I would be very comfortable with that. So I guess you could say I don't have the head knowledge so much as the first hand experience. Sorry for rambling.
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post #15 of 22 Old 11-21-2008, 08:17 PM
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If he stops and stands it you ask him to walk up the hill, let him. He's not going to stand out there until he starves. Make him stand there until he walks up the hilll--wait him out, I doubt it'll take long. I'd never, ever let a horse get away with picking the gait for going uphill.

Cantering up hills is a really, really bad habit to let a horse get into--nip it in the bud NOW.
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post #16 of 22 Old 11-21-2008, 11:46 PM
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I understand that it is fun and exciting to lope up hills, I do it often. But it is always my choice when we do it and when we walk. Everyone does things their own way and prefers different things I just don't want to see anyone get hurt.

Always remember that feeling of looking at a big, open country over the ears of a good horse, seeing a new trail unwind ahead of you, and that ever-spectacular view from the top of the ridge!!! Follow my training blog: http://robertsontraining.blogspot.com/
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post #17 of 22 Old 11-22-2008, 12:08 AM Thread Starter
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Ya I know that he should only lope when I tell him to so I will work on it with him. Which doesn't mean we will never lope up hills. I will definately try some stuff but I cant say that I am a believer that half halts will work. I'm not saying they won't but I've just never done them before. Thanks again for all the advice and concern.
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post #18 of 22 Old 11-22-2008, 06:11 PM
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Can you controle the speed? You said he'd lope slower than walk. I that case I don't really see a problem unless you find it uncomfortable or want him to be able to walk up.

If you want to change it, wait him out.


Always keep your head up, but be careful to keep your nose at a friendly level.


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post #19 of 22 Old 11-22-2008, 07:34 PM
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I don't care how steep the hill is, I want my horse to walk. Getting them to canter up a hill is not a good habit to get in to. The horse has a powerful butt, get him to use it! If the horse tries to run up the hill I'll zig-zag him. Easy and effective solution.

If a horse wants to run DOWN a hill I will use the same strategy. Works every time.
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post #20 of 22 Old 11-23-2008, 04:03 AM
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I ride alot in the mountains and there is mostly just up or down. There are some parts of the trails that are flat where it is safe to lope. However,on the upside I walk to warm up and then long trot mostly. I always walk on trails that I did not know or can not properly see obstacles that might be ahead in time for a gait transition or stop.
I always walk on the down side. On the steep parts sometimes I have to get off and lead down if the trail doesn't allow me to serpentine down.
Last summer I rode in Italy, in the Piemontaise region. for a week with 2 gals that were licensed alpine specialists. Wow, we "tailed up" and rode down in slate rock ravines and "no trail " hillsides. What a kick! But the food was almost a good as the riding :)
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