Riding in the rain is a great de-spooking opportunity. Heck, when hurricane Irene blew through here I took Indie out in it, hard winds, pouring rains and all.
I see no reason NOT to ride, as long as its nothing fast or real hard. I like to avoid hills during wet weather though, and tend to stay were the footing is solid (or sometimes just ride down the suburb so we can walk on the concrete.). Even if there is mud, if the horse is quiet and reliable enough then I ride in that as well. I personally find the mud lots of fun as long as your safe and have good sense
It's fine to ride in as long as the others said, the footing is safe. Also make sure to dress for the occasion as you could get very chilly in the rain...obviously. But I thought it couldn't hurt to mention it. I once went on a really long trail ride where it rained on and off with a short-sleeve shirt and no jacket. Fun times. xD
I think its really fun but my horse thinks otherwise haha, hes really scared of storms and seems to think anytime it rains its gonna tornado or something lol but the more you do it the better you will get. It is a great despooking exercise and helps bond with the horse because you have to trust eachother alot more than normal, and if it is a little slippery then i think it helps him focus mor on you and his footing. now if its crazy out and so muddy that hes sinking in alot then no its not a good idea, but otherwise its great!
I have rode in misting rain, I have rode in mud, and got caught out in a little storm a month ago. Winds were whipping, some splats of raindrops, it was thundering as we fast trotted, cantered back to the camp. It started raining just before we got back so Yeah, I got soaking wet.
We have stopped riding before when it was thundering and we could see lightening in a distance. When it passed we mounted up again and took off. Heavy mud is the pits - Biscuit is not fond of heavy mud and was slipping and sliding in it one day after I first got him and he was so undone he reached over and bit my cousins leg. LOL thank God he didn't really clamp down. He was just spazzing out.
It can be nice riding in a slow drizzle - but always be aware of footing and what the weather is doing. You don't want to get caught out in a lightening storm!
I live in western Oregon, it's ride in the rain or not ride for 9mos out of the year. I choose ride in the rain.
Footing is the big bugaboo, have to carefully choose where and when to ride. Most trails become way to muddy to ride on. Where I normally go then is gravel roads, coast or down at some of the river parks where the soil is sandy. If the passes are clear can also hit up central OR where it is much dryer.
Hah, I live/ride in Oregon so riding in the rain is just a part of life for me.
I'm the same as the others, I ride in it but I try to stay away from possible slick areas and I stay at slow speeds unless I know the footing up ahead is going to be fine (one of the trails I ride on is crushed gravel so I often canter on that when it rains because the drainage there is great).
I dislike riding in the mud quite immensely because my mare just lets herself slide on mud instead of walking more carefully to avoid sliding, but I do it sometimes. I'd really avoid doing anything more than a walk in slide-y mud just because I have seen some bad wrecks that were caused solely by a horse sliding on mud at a walk, but it really depends on your horses sure-footed-ness and your bravery.
Another thing I have that's great for wet weather is all synthetic tack. I tried using a leather saddle last winter but I worried about harming the leather and, as luck would have it, that saddle didn't fit my mare anymore this year so I got a synthetic. Most leather saddles should be fine with getting wet as long as they are oiled and cleaned regularly, I just felt bad about it.
I live in the desert so rain is an exiciting and rare event here. Whenever it does rain there's usually also lightning, so obviously not a good idea to ride then. If it's just rain and the footing isn't bad I ride though. Pretty much what everyone else said! Posted via Mobile Device
going with your riding in the rain question. does it effect a horse to saddle him when he is already wet from the rain??? i never do it cause i feel bad since my guys are out 24/7. but do you think that would hurt them or am i making a reason not to ride in the rain lol??
I live on the Oregon coast, so I'm usually riding in the rain. The worst things IMO is sitting in a wet saddle, so a good pair of rain pants is a must. I wear glasses so it's really hard to see when they get wet, need a good hat. I am very lucky, because where I ride it's all sand footing and lots tree covered trails along with lots beach riding.I spent all last winter training my 2 1/2 year old in this area in the wind and rain. He did great.
Also there have been times I have saddled my horses when they were wet did'nt seem to bother them. The situation is my horses are out 24/7 even though they have a shelter if they choose, they don't choose. I trailer my horses to where I ride takes about 20 min. so I saddle them before I put them in the trailer. If they were wet, by the time I get to the beach they are dry.
So don't let the rain stop you, just be safe!!
Back in my younger days, we ran a few head of cattle. Horses were kept outside 24/7 pretty much right alongside the cattle. Had a really wet late winter and spring one year and there was a lot of flooding. Had one storm come up that dropped a lot of rain all at once. We had cattle on the wrong side of a creek and needed to get them moved fast, before it was too late and they were stranded...or worse.
Stupid truck wouldn't start, wouldn't have done us any good any way as it turned out. Hubby and I called up the horses (they were in the pasture closer to the house with some of the cattle.) Horses were soaking wet, but we had no choice. Toweled their backs off as best we could, saddled up and rode to the back pasture.
The rain had let up while we were saddling up, but there was a LOT more on the way. Had to ride down the red clay bank of the creek, across the creek and up the other side. Let me tell you, slick doesn't BEGIN to describe that Oklahoma red clay! I don't know how my mare kept her feet, but she took good care of me. We moved all of the cattle across the creek, except for one really young calf. It got swept off its feet by the current, and we had to rope the poor thing and drag it up the bank. Better than letting it drown, I guess.
That bank was really treacherous after all those cattle had torn it up, but we didn't have any real trouble, but I was terrified, and could only cling to the saddle horn and my mare's mane as she scrambled up the creek bank.
That was the first time I had ever ridden in the rain. After that, the only thing that stopped me from riding in the rain was lightening.
I ride in the rain - I'm not made of sugar, I wont melt lol. Being an Eventer and a Fox Hunter, I ride in any weather, I just dress for the occasion. It doesn't bother me at all.
Don't get me wrong, if I am sitting at home thinking about going for a ride, and it's raining, I'll probobly opt out and choose to do something else. But if I am a paid competator at an Event or that day has a Fox Hunt, I'm gearing up and heading out. The weather wont stop me.
I am in the same situation as Wallaby. If I don't ride in the rain, I won't be able to ride at all. I do draw the line at pouring rain. Done that more than once and only do it now if I'm already on the trail.
My horses are all great "mud" horses.
I remember something John Lyons wrote about riding on slippery footing: don't change speed quickly, don't change direction quickly and don't start or stop quickly. I think that advice would eliminate most mud issues.