First Big Trail Ride... Questions. - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 04-01-2009, 08:08 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Texas.
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Question First Big Trail Ride... Questions.

ok well My friend and I decided we want to ride in the annual Saddle Up for St. Judes trail ride. I've been on trail rides out at my barn with my friend but never something offcial with tons of strangers that will be your riding comrade for the rest of the day. it's a 10 mile ride. Anyhow here are just a few questions i have...

What do you do to prepare you and your horse for a long ride?

What do you do grooming wise?

What do you bring?

And anything else you can think of?

Im super super excited the ride is either the 25th or the 28th i can't

your advice is much appreciated.

"A good rider can hear his horse speak to him. A great rider can hear his horse whisper."
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post #2 of 7 Old 04-01-2009, 08:31 PM
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: SE Kansas
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If you haven't already you need to start getting yourself and your horse in shape. A 10 mile ride doesn't seem that far but if your only used to doing a short 2-3 mile ride your going to end up with a sore horse and a sore butt
Just start doing the 2-3 mile rides at least 3-4 times a week working up to as far as you can go by the ride date.
Sounds like your horse is used to riding with other horses so there shouldn't be a problem there. I'm sure the St. Jude ride is going to be a huge crowd with all different levels of riders so I woulnd't worry too much about them going to fast or not taking regular breaks. Wish I could go with ya

Sorry I hit enter before I was finished

A ride like this one may provide lunch etc. check out what is being provided before you plan for anything in the meals area. Our club always lets the riders know what is being provided in our newsletter about upcoming rides.
For sure take some water, I like to take hard candy (jolly ranchers) with me and some horsey cookies for my girl.
Take a camera, some sun block, chap stick, I carry a horsemans knife all the time so that has all my tool type stuff. They are handy and not very expensive.
As far as grooming, I always clean Vida up before we leave the house, then give her a quick brushing when we get to where were going.
I can't think of anything else, except be sure to have fun

"Until one has loved an animal, part of one's soul remains unawakened..."
- Anatole France

Last edited by Vidaloco; 04-01-2009 at 08:43 PM.
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post #3 of 7 Old 04-01-2009, 10:14 PM
Green Broke
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Maureen, what's a horseman's knife? is it like a pocket knife?
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post #4 of 7 Old 04-02-2009, 12:01 PM
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: SE Kansas
Posts: 10,620
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Yes its a pocket knife with a hoof pick, hoof knife and several other gadgets on it. Its on sale for 9.99 on

I'm sure they make more expensive ones, but this little cheapy has gone a lot of miles with me and Vida. I have a small little leather bag I keep it in thats attached to my saddle at all times. It will hold my knife, some Tums and a chap stick. My main stuff I gotta have.

"Until one has loved an animal, part of one's soul remains unawakened..."
- Anatole France

Last edited by Vidaloco; 04-02-2009 at 12:03 PM.
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post #5 of 7 Old 04-02-2009, 03:38 PM
Green Broke
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WHOA THAT'S SO COOL!!! thanks!!
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post #6 of 7 Old 04-02-2009, 11:18 PM
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Northern Utah
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Most horses seeem to get excited when they end up with a big group of horses. You will have horses whinnying, horses prancing, Jigging etc. With all the strange horses, You horse will wonder what his position is in this new herd. Be prepared to remind him that you are still the Alpha horse and regards of whats going on around him, He needs to pay attention to you. Practice some calm down queues. Ask the horse to drop his head. disengage the hind end, One rein stops. And do these as needed to keep his focus on you.

10 miles is no big deal to a horse. If it's had any kind of regular exercise. A fat pasture potato may find it a work out. Just watch the horse during the ride. Give him LOTS of chances to drink. An occassional bit of grass helps to keep the gut moving. I suspect a 10 mile ride at a walk = 3 hours on the trail. that's not much.

Watch out for other horses. Don't let your horse get with in range of their heels. You don't want him or you getting kicked by a strange horse. Not everybody can control their horses. You need to watch your own.
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post #7 of 7 Old 04-07-2009, 07:45 PM
Green Broke
Join Date: Apr 2009
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Make sure the basics are provided (hay, grain and water).
Grooming, always take a hoof pick, curry comb and a brush.
Horseman's knief sounds like a brillant idea (:
What are the horses being contained in (pasture, round pen or tied) - if yor tying them, just make sure they have enough rope, but not enough to hurt themselves.
Watch your horse. Drunk strangers are always a danger.

I would also bring a stall fork, to pick up poop aroung the camping area, and fling it into the woods or start a compost pile (:

Hmm, I'll try to think of somemore later... lol (:
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