Ain't nuthin like ridin' a fine horse in a new country - Augustus McCrae – Lonesome Dove

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Fun at the Trail Clinic!

Karen & Mark Plumlee
Another Saddle-Up that was outstanding!  It was about 21 degrees this morning when I loaded Farah up & we headed over to Mission Farrier School to attend a trail clinic with Mark PlumleeWe started in the arena, learning to guide our horses over, around & through a course of obstacles that were challenging & interesting!  Mark directed us on the safe way to approach each challenge & we started with our halters & 15 ft. leads.  Next, we mounted up to practice what we had learned before heading outside to a very challenging trail course set up on a hillside overlooking the Monroe Valley.  
Just a part of the course~
We're going to to through the water~!
Entering the creek before it was full of water was a non-issue, we had done it several times in the morning.  But... once afternoon arrived & it was full of water, it was another thing all together!  She watched as other horses went in & out, but was completely unwilling to go in...  Mark worked to send her through first, then I mounted up & we followed Karen's horse in, while Mark applied pressure from behind.  That worked & we made it through!   I already knew that puddles were not her "thing", so it was great to have a safe place to work & Marks experience.  The large stair-step tires were another problem for us.  Farah didn't think there was any reason whatsoever that we needed to climb up those!  But I did finally convince her to go up & onto the biggest one! She did this while I was mounted too. 
Mark used the barrel to prevent Farah from evading

 Later in the afternoon, after we'd played follow-the-leader with Mark in the lead.  I think everyone felt that they'd gained a lot of ground working with their horses,  I know I did!  Farah was tired, I was tired - it was getting cold again & we were ready to head home, but before we left, we did the creek on our own!  Success was sweet!   I was surprised to find that navigating the different obstacles was more mentally challenging than I had expected.  After all, most Endurance riders are a bit extreme anyway :-)  I can easily see that gaining competence for trail classes takes time, patience & practice! Now we're going to ask "Dad" for a tire full of gravel for our very own!  :-)


  1. This looks like an awesome event--and you TOTALLY lucked out on the weather, too! >g<

    Hooray for both of you!

  2. What an awesome clinic! Do you live in a really horsey area, it seems there are a lot of equine activities and trails up there, I'm horridly jealous :)

    Farah looks great by the way, and she's getting so much exposure to things she's going to be a seasoned trail horse in no time.


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