This morning dawned beautifully foggy but once it cleared it was a simply glorious day so Galahad and I went exploring.
We couldn’t get along a lane which was blocked with a van but had permission to ride in some new fields which was very exciting – we don’t often have new places to ride. These fields are incredibly steep but are shelved, making handy tracks to ride along. They can be a bit unnerving though – I was very aware that one spook could send us down the hillside.
Nevertheless, we were having a lovely time. It was wonderful to be out hacking again after a long week at work and we were very much enjoying ourselves in the sunshine. Then this happened.
I somehow failed to duck properly under the tree and a branch caught me round the face. I genuinely thought I was going to be pulled off backwards – I stayed on but I have some very impressive scratches which look rather like cat whiskers. They are just a bit sore too!
Things got even more exciting on our way home. I stupidly let go of Galahad when I was closing the gate back onto our land – it’s an awkward gate which needs two hands. Galahad thought it would be a great idea to canter home and caused great consternation when he arrived with reins and stirrups flying but no rider.
All in all, it was a lovely ride but I was quite glad to be home!
Galahad has again had a busy few days. First of all, he had his final clip of the winter – which means pretty much all of his hair has gone. I love seeing all of the multicoloured hair on the floor when my instructor has finished!
Obviously, not all of this belongs to Galahad!
He does look rather smart now.
Then Galahad had his six-monthly back check and for only the second time ever he had no problems and needed no treatment. We have had so many issues with his back that this is still a surprise and such a wonderful feeling. I could not be happier!
As I mentioned last week, the ponies have been spending a few days away. On Sunday I was meant to be taking my dog to an agility competition but it was cancelled due to the snow. Of course I was disappointed but I took the chance to go out on a longer hack with some people from the yard.
Although the roads were mostly clear of snow there were still some nasty icy patches so we spent a lot of time playing follow my leader to ensure we all stayed on the safe path. It was rather an exciting adventure really!
We had two lovely long canter tracks to enjoy – which Galahad did very much! One of them was a little stony so he kept wanting to duck onto the verge to save his feet but otherwise he was bounding along.
In fact, I was very much impressed with him. Normally on longer rides he can start to fall behind the bigger horses and we do a lot of jogging to keep up. This time though he was full of beans the whole way round and kept up beautifully.
He did get very warm though and needed a wash down afterwards. We borrowed a lilac headcollar which although slightly big I thought was rather fetching.
We had a fabulous ride and finished it off with tea and cake. What could be better?
We have been having a proper wintry week. The snow started for us on Tuesday, we had some heavy snow showers on Wednesday and a proper snowstorm on Thursday night. Everything is very icy as well but I was pretty disappointed that the snow at home was mostly very wet and didn’t always settle properly.
However, I have been out and about this week as the ponies went away to my instructor’s yard for a few days. The yard is high enough above us for the snow to have settled much more than it did at home. In fact, I was worried they would be snowed in and the ponies wouldn’t be able to go at all.
Luckily, the roads weren’t that bad and the ponies were duly collected on Wednesday. I have had a fantastic few days playing in the snow. Thursday was the best day though – a heavy snowfall was forecast for the afternoon so I decided to ride nice and early. Driving over to the yard the roads were pretty clear so I fully intended to take Galahad out for a hack. First though, I had to school Cookster.
The school was excitingly snowy when we started and before long a few flakes of snow were falling, just to add interest. Those few flakes increased and suddenly we were in a proper snowstorm. It was really rather lovely.
I’m not sure how much Cookster appreciated it but I certainly did – everything was so beautiful! Even better, my riding skirt was getting a proper use too.
Of course, I couldn’t very well take Galahad out on the roads in weather like that so we stuck to the school too, although – annoyingly – the snow had stopped by the time I got on him. Not that the roads would have been safe anyway!
I know the snow causes all sorts of problems but I can’t help enjoying it!