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Tonight I really wanted to ride but the hooves were getting quite long. By the time I was done trimming, doing chores and retrieving the horses from the far edge of the turnout pasture, there was only ten minutes before dark. I still tacked up Aria and rode the ten minutes. I figured it was better than nothing, and it's always good to keep her thinking she'll be ridden often.

It started raining when we were five steps away from the barn, but Aria kept going just fine until we got down the road and she saw that they had put a big blue tarp over the burn piles. She wanted to turn around, but kept going with encouragement. Then the mare Patty bolted around the side of her shelter, I guess we spooked her. Aria jumped a little, but she never spooked very hard and even though she was scared we went around the outside of the arena, checked out the tarp and then headed back home before full dark. It was sad to have so little time, but I was proud of Aria for going along with my idea of a ride in the rain, and it was rather windy too. Finally feeling like fall here.

Even though it seemed like I was barely riding Hero, today he was able to hold his legs up much better than usual and I can only conclude he is feeling less sore. He has been going to turnout without any antics or spooking, and he just seems more calm and contented in general. It's good to see him like this.

I always talk about how frustrating it is that Thoroughbreds have such terrible issues from poor breeding. I took a pic today of a piece I trimmed off the same part of Hero's hoof vs Aria's hoof. The wide one belongs to a 13 hand pony, and the narrow one to a 15.3 hand horse. That is just wrong.
It's not changeable either, just genetics. Hero gets biotin, hoof minerals, 24/7 turnout, all the things they say you can do to improve hoof quality. But his walls will never be thicker than that.
Automotive tire Road surface Grass Asphalt Wood

It was rewarding to have the hooves nicely trimmed. They were suddenly quite long because we've had a little rain, and the retained soles shed out.

I watched another video about how easy it is to get on a horse without having the saddle slip. The man in the video mounts with no girth, and his saddle stays put. I've never been able to get on a treeless saddle without it slipping, unless I have the girth tight enough. I tried it again for the millionth time, and my saddle came over.

I've come to some conclusions: The combo of my particular lack of vertical spring, long bone ratios and muscle strength, plus very round horses means I can't get the techniques to work. I have tried facing forward, facing the horse and frog-legging, using mane and not pulling on the saddle, etc.

With Nickel or Nala I could mount without a cinch and never pull a saddle over. Their backs have some shape over the top, and the panels bridge over it. Even with a treed saddle on Amore, Halla, Hero or Aria the saddle would slip significantly if the girth is too loose. With treeless, there is just no way without a mounting block. But I have decided that seeing if I can ground mount is the test to see if my girth is tight enough. When I have been unable to get on from the ground and used a mounting block due to having the girth loose, later in the ride I've had a very loose girth. The treeless saddles do get looser as you go because the pads and panels warm up and compress down after a few minutes.

I know many of you can mount and the saddle stays, and I want to say kudos, but I can't do it!
The good thing is that I've had no issues with stability in the treeless saddles once I'm on, just when mounting.

Next week I'm starting a 12 day vacation, and I think it's the longest I've had off in several years. After that my schedule will be strange for a while. One of our night supervisors is off for a while, and the other quit, and I'm the relief. So I've agreed to switch to 12 hour shifts for a lot of October and November. Hopefully with more days off I can motivated to get out to the barn earlier some days, and do some extra riding!
 

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The hoof trim pictures are fascinating. I'm glad Hero seems to be in better spirits.

I laughed at the "lack of vertical spring" comment. I think Fizz's saddle would stay put if I tried to mount from the ground, but I always find something that gives me some elevation to get on. Fizz and Coalie and about the same height, and M and I are about the same (short) height too, but she mounts Coalie from the ground all the time. I think though she and I are both short, she's "leggier" than me, and more flexible, so it works. Coalie is more of a barrel shape than Fizz, and I think sometimes his saddle wants to list to the side, but for mounting, it works for them...
 

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I think a whole lot of it depends on the saddle and horse. Bones I could get on without a cinch. He also has some massive withers. Husband can get on Lucy without a cinch, but she also has decent withers.

Take Cashman and compare the ability of his getting on the mare with no cinch, to slipping a tight saddle sometimes. I weight less, and I have slipped the saddle on a not quite tight enough cinch on him more than a handful of times probably. He has no withers at all.

Queen and Zeus are mildly better built than Cashman, but both have little for withers, and both have saddles slip. Zeus much more than Queen, because his little girl just doesn’t pay a ton of attention. lol.

The English saddles? They just slip. The nice one I have would sit on Bones, possibly Lucy, but the cheap one the others ride I can think is super tight and still roll it. It makes me understand the mounting block idea a whole lot more. Queen I made husband give me a leg up last time, because she doesn’t know what a mounting block is.
 

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Today was 85 degrees, and I debated riding but decided to wait until tomorrow when it will be down in the 70s. Aria does have a bit of winter coat on already. Plus, Maybelle's rider should be able to go along tomorrow.

I was remembering today how much time I spent thinking about what discipline Hero might like, since he seemed unhappy so often. As he politely and cheerfully was asking me for a treat, I realized that people need to put the "retired" discipline on their list to consider, because it seems Hero was always dreaming of retirement. He seems to have finally found some peace. I'm thinking someone told him both his sire and grandsire were retired to stud by age 5, and he just thought that was the path he would also take in life. I guess if your dad and grandad retired at age 30 and you still found yourself working at age 60, you might resent that.

Abbey would like you to notice the art carving she made out of a nut shell (lower left). She is thinking about selling them to save for more sunflower seeds.
Fawn Rodent Whiskers Terrestrial animal Wood

She thought she was looking pretty cute tonight.
Fawn Rodent Whiskers Rat Terrestrial animal


Fawn Rodent Whiskers Rat Pest
 

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Discussion Starter · #1,186 ·
Had a lovely hour long ride on Aria today. Went with Maybelle's rider, she ponied MIkey along.
I tried using my phone for video, but accidentally reversed the screen so it was taping the inside of the case for 20 minutes. Oops.
I only got a few seconds of the "bear trail," which had no sign or smell of bear today.
Aria Bear Trail

Gi the boston had a field day with a group of peacocks, making them all fly up into the trees. Even the babies flew; we didn't know they are old enough to fly. She got in trouble.

Hero called out for us quite often, but mostly was eating hay.


After the ride, Aria only had a little sweat under her chest and girth area. When I asked her to go as fast as she wanted up the hill on the bear trail, she actually galloped for a little. That was very fun, her gallop feels full of energy. Even though I know she is not actually moving that fast, it feels fast on little horses.

Our ride has some good challenges for green horses. On the way out there was a horse trailer parked near one of the fields, with a table and chairs newly set out. A rider came down the road toward us on a prancing horse, and passed by. I thought for sure he was gaited, but his rider said no, just having naughty legs. They sure went high and to the side. At the bridge, there was a truck parked just on the other side, and a big machine for digging holes.

At the top of the hill before the nursery, there is a property that has tons of items such as trailers, piles of dirt, and other things that move each time we go by. The scariest item today was a new chicken coop, which looked very cute but had ducks inside that made an ominous sound from in the darkness. Other than a spurt forward or two, and not wanting to stand still to wait while our friends reorganized at times, Aria did great.

Her mane is getting so long, I tried some loose braids recently because it gets snarled every day, but she tried rubbing them out (of course).


 
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