100 Days of Training
Opal still has some winter fluff to lose.
These days were spent working on ground manners with Opal. I'm not sure if it was the wind, or spring fever, but her manners got left in her pasture. Hey, we all have off days, right? We practiced standing at the tie pole and not dancing around. It didn't take long for the lights to come on upstairs. Opal still has a lot of coat to shed, most of the barn seems to be ready for warmer weather with their summer coats, but both Opal and Ehawee are still fluffy to some degree. Daily grooming just helps build a stronger bond, so I don't mind.
Opal wants to report that there were not nearly enough carrots in my pockets while she had to stand at the tie pole. She leads a 'tough' life.
100 training sessions later:
With the weather improving (I say that as a big storm is starting to roll in...sigh) Greg, owner of the mustang Amigo, and I decided to roll the dice on a very windy day and hit the trail for the first time this year. Aside from the wind, it was a lovely day for a ride. Not to mention a much needed one for me to decompress - sewer line had to be replaced and it took nearly 5 weeks to get it done, yeah, that wasn't stressful at all. Anyways, we decided to try Round Valley for our ride. We chose wisely. Since the trail is tucked against the hills, there was little to no wind. The creek was even flowing and full of tadpoles! Opal just wanted to play in the water, but Amigo took some working with, but in the end, even he was walking and playing in the water.
Loaded and ready to hit the road.
We started off walking our horses in hand, Opal had never been on this trail and while it wasn't very windy, there are lots of big oak trees around with the potential to loose branches. We also encountered some cattle which Opal seemed interested in. Once I knew she was on with the cattle, I found a rock and mounted up to ride her back to the trailer. We got lots of play time in the water and she even trotted a bit on the trail with ease. Truth be told, while she was well mannered in hand as we walked the trail, she was much better when I was up in the saddle. She was happy to just plow along the trail. It was a perfect first outing for the season.
While it was breezy, it was warm. Opal's mane was braided to help keep her cool.