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riding alone on the trails.

This is a discussion on riding alone on the trails. within the Trail Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category
  • Riding on the trails alone

 
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    07-06-2010, 04:28 PM
  #11
Weanling
My BO and trainer don't like for us to venture to far out by ourselves..as its really wooded in the trails and when your out there alone everything starts looking the same lol.
     
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    07-06-2010, 04:38 PM
  #12
Showing
I ride by myself a lot, often on green horses. I usually have my cell phone (not that it would matter, no signal most the time). I can't really tell anyone where I am going because I often don't know. I have the entire area here to roam, everybody is cool with me going on their property so I never know when I will decide to change my mind on final destinations. I do always have a pocket knife, just because it is habit that I carry one and I have needed it a couple of times. I never carry water but I know where every windmill and creek is within about 20 miles LOL. I have been bucked off out in the middle of nowhere. Fortunately I have never been hurt bad enough that I couldn't either catch the horse again or walk back to town (if the horse ran off and left me). If I need a bandage, I am not above tearing a sleeve off my shirt to soak up some blood or tie off an injury. I go out completely unprepared compared to a lot of people but that's just me. It's how I have always done it and I honestly don't think I could get into the habit of carrying a bunch of stuff with me.
     
    07-06-2010, 05:26 PM
  #13
Foal
I really like Trails list of items to bring! I haven't been riding long (8 years) and most of that has been trail riding. For the first 4 years until my sister was old enough to come with me, I rode alone. The best thing I find about riding with yourself is that you don't have to worry about another horse! If I'm riding with someone I am constantly on the lookout for what their horse is doing as well as my horse. It can be quite exhausting.

That said, riding alone is clearly more risky. When I was first starting out I doubt I had the best sense. I had an unpredictable pony that I would take up in the mountains with no signal on my mobile phone and nothing but a water bottle and some snacks for her and myself. After multiple accidents however (me falling off, her bridle snapping, her stepping on a piece of glass etc) I now travel more prepared.

I definitely would always travel with a mobile phone (cell phone). If your horse is spooky definitely have it on silent or vibrate. Another thing I never travel without is a hoof pick. They're small and easy to fit in a saddle bag or backpack and if your horse picks up a rock in its hoof then you're settled. :) I always bring water still and definitely bring a halter and leadrope if you can fit it.

I would also recommend bringing twine. It is invaluable as a quick fix if your bridle snaps! After having to lead my horse home by one hand on its nose and one on its shoulder for over an hour, I will never travel without it.
     
    07-06-2010, 05:46 PM
  #14
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by smrobs    
I ride by myself a lot, often on green horses. I usually have my cell phone (not that it would matter, no signal most the time). I can't really tell anyone where I am going because I often don't know. I have the entire area here to roam, everybody is cool with me going on their property so I never know when I will decide to change my mind on final destinations. I do always have a pocket knife, just because it is habit that I carry one and I have needed it a couple of times. I never carry water but I know where every windmill and creek is within about 20 miles LOL. I have been bucked off out in the middle of nowhere. Fortunately I have never been hurt bad enough that I couldn't either catch the horse again or walk back to town (if the horse ran off and left me). If I need a bandage, I am not above tearing a sleeve off my shirt to soak up some blood or tie off an injury. I go out completely unprepared compared to a lot of people but that's just me. It's how I have always done it and I honestly don't think I could get into the habit of carrying a bunch of stuff with me.
I'm the same way. I take only my cell phone and a pocket knife...I'm a saddle up and go person. Similarly, the old time farmers don't care if you ride their properties and, especially with the young mares, there is always something along the way that catches my eye to wander off and practice with on. I'll let my wife know about how long I plan on being out and the general area I plan to ride to give her an idea of when it's time to saddle up another mare and start searching for me.
     
    07-08-2010, 04:47 PM
  #15
Weanling
I keep my Blackberry strapped to my ankle when I ride. If I want to ride I generally have to go alone since I don't have anyone else to ride with.
     
    07-08-2010, 07:44 PM
  #16
Green Broke
The first time I went trail ride alone I was on a horse I had never ridden before. I was just messing around and decided to go around the loop, a path which would only take a few minutes. Well, minutes turned into hours, and soon I was hopelessly and completely lost. I had my cell phone in my pocket, but I was too stubborn to call for help. The lesson: maps, cell phones, lead ropes, and water!

The poor 'ol girl I was riding got so tired that I had to stop for a while and let her rest. This is why I brought my water and leadrope. Water not so much for me as for the horse. Also, I second pocket knives. I collect knives, so taking them with me is second natural. Knives are the second most useful thing in the world.

When ever you go out of a trail ride, go ahead and assume you'll get lost and be out there longer than you thought.

Also, at a NATRC event, I got this bracelet that unwinds to six feet of rope. It's the coolest thing. I always take it with me in case my bridle breaks or something. Rope is single most useful thing on earth.

I keep all my junk in a little backpack. It's nice and light, reflective, and stays with me when I fall off. I also keep it loose enough to slip out of if I get caught in a branch or something.

If going on a long ride, I recommend either riding in a halter/bridle combination or keeping your horse's halter on underneath the bridle. It's easy and safer then changing between them on rest stops. Don't want your only way out of the woods getting away!
     
    07-08-2010, 08:57 PM
  #17
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brighteyes    
If going on a long ride, I recommend either riding in a halter/bridle combination or keeping your horse's halter on underneath the bridle. It's easy and safer then changing between them on rest stops. Don't want your only way out of the woods getting away!
A lot of people don't like to leave the halter on under the bridle, but I always do. It's just quick, very convienient, and doesn't affect the horses.
     
    07-08-2010, 09:03 PM
  #18
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by PaintHorseMares    
A lot of people don't like to leave the halter on under the bridle, but I always do. It's just quick, very convienient, and doesn't affect the horses.
I always have the halter on under the bridle, for a just-in-case type of thing.
     
    07-09-2010, 12:06 AM
  #19
Foal
I am a lone rider. I always tell someone aproximently where I'm going. I always take a small fanny pack with a bottle of water, A buck knife on my side, {and often times my 38 if I'm going to be in unfamilare territory} My freshly charged cell, and depending how long i'm going to be gone, extra shirt, colaspsable water bucket for my horse. But ALWAYS take a whistle and always put it on your person. So handy if you get seperated from your horse and are lost or worst yet, hurt and can't move, And I also take a lighter and tender. It sounds like alot but it all fits nicely in my fanny pack. The whistle hooks on my belt loop, along with my knife and cell. Good luck and have fun, and be safe!
     
    07-09-2010, 09:57 AM
  #20
Foal
Oh wow, thanks everyone. I went out by myself yesterday, only a bit farther than we've gone before. It went...well, but id like to see some improvements over the summer. Deej, I like your whistle idea!
     

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