Dodging the Hail

This weekend my sister and I have been out riding together for the first time in weeks. I am very used to riding by myself but it was absolutely lovely to have someone with whom I could chat as we were riding along for a change.

It may be somewhat early to properly tinsel up the ponies but as my riding with tinsel is of necessity a bit limited I couldn’t resist getting some out and making a start. The good news is that the ponies have never seemed to mind our strange antics.

What they did mind was the incredibly heavy hailstorms we had yesterday. Most of them didn’t tend to last particularly long but they were vicious while they lasted – and the hailstones were huge too. Galahad very definitely wanted to turn his back to the weather and wait for it to be over. I was much more keen to carry on and get home!

The most exciting bit though happened when we were tacking up. The sudden downpour of hail made the most tremendous noise on the roof of the stables and made us all jump. Galahad’s rug – already undone – fell off and scared him even more, making him break the string to which he was tied. I had to hang on tight to keep him in the stable and even then he might have got away if my sister hadn’t swung the door shut. She wasn’t quite so lucky and Cookster was halfway across the field before he stopped. Thankfully though, he did not have trailing ropes like Galahad and everyone was safe. It was quite an experience!

Wintry Landscapes

Much of the country has had snow over the past few days. We have not but we did get some heavy hailstorms and as it has been so cold the hail didn’t melt but lay about on the ground looking absolutely beautiful.

We went out for a little potter on the ponies to enjoy it. We had a look at the roads but decided they were just too icy to be safe so we stuck to riding about the fields and up our own lane. Its surprising how much of a ride you can get in a few fields!

Both ponies were feeling very jolly and bouncy so I was fully prepared for them to explode and for me to end up on the floor. However, they behaved impeccably and we had what may have been the most sedate trot ever. That was a relief and so I had a lovely time admiring the view. It was the best way to start the new year!

April Showers

Really it should be April downpours!

We have a couple of days of sunshine without rain and the ground starts to look like it might be thinking about drying up.


Then the heavens open and we are swimming in mud again.  It seems to be never ending!  The other day we rode out in reasonably nice weather but it wasn’t long before we were being drenched in some very cold rain which turned to hail after a few minutes.  All of the lambs in the surrounding fields suddenly started complaining  and before we knew it they had disappeared into the hedges.  It didn’t make them quiet though – we were surrounded by a wall of sound.


On the bright side, the rain means that I have good reason to wear my riding skirt.  It keeps both of us lovely and dry – although when I am wearing it I’m sure the rain is more likely to hold off!


Another positive is that since the clocks went forward we have been having some lovely light evenings and there is finally time to ride after work.  It is wonderful to get more riding!


This week we went out to tack up the ponies in beautiful sunshine.  It was a glorious day and I was looking forward to a lovely, relaxing ride.

By the time we started up the hill,  the sky behind us had gone ominously dark and we could see the weather closing in.  It was still beautiful though.


Before long the hail started and Galahad’s mane was filled with pretty beads.


For the first time  I felt that my riding skirt was serving a genuine purpose – protecting my poor little clipped pony from all those hailstones.


We did have a lovely ride nonetheless and despite the hail it was nice and relaxing.  A wonderful way to spend a morning.


On Easter Monday morning there was glorious sunshine when I let the ponies out.  My sister and I missed the best of the weather for our hack but it was still nice enough to ride without a coat.  At least, I didn’t wear one.  She has no pockets in her jodhpurs and so needed the coat to carry her phone.  It was starting to get a bit warm to be comfortable though.

We collected our neighbour’s paper and set off up the hill.  I have to admit to hurrying Galahad a bit as there was a nasty black cloud off to the right.  Sadly we didn’t hurry enough and before we reached the top of the hill the heavens opened.  Not just with rain – with biting hail which numbed the side of my face and sent both ponies straight into the hedge so they could turn their heads away.  Apparently that wasn’t much relief though as they were soon keen to be moving again  – faster than before! – and we soon reached the postbox which is handily inside a barn.  It gave us a very good excuse for sheltering inside!


Galahad was quite happy to stay indoors but Cookster prefers moving about so was pretty soon outside again.


Luckily the worst of the shower was over by then but my sister was suddenly very happy to be wearing her coat!

Dodging the Thunderstorms

The thunderstorm we have been expecting for weeks finally broke this morning. It came with a proper downpour and hail. The ponies of course decided that it was the ideal time to come out of the stable and stand outside.DSCN3347

As soon as it stopped raining the blue skies were back and we rushed out to ride. I rode through our dressage test which went quite well except for him trying to get back to the yard.

I know my head is chopped off but how cool does his mane look!

I know my head is chopped off but how cool does his mane look!

We also had a little jump. He did get a bit excited then as my sister’s pony had gone back to the yard and Galahad was very keen to go too. Once he settled he jumped very nicely.DSCN3376

He jumped the actual tyres for the first time and that was probably the skinniest jump he has ever tried as well.


No jumping in this one but do you see how the sky is beginning to get a bit ominous?

Then there was a huge clap of thunder and pretty soon this was happening.

We called it a day then which turned out to be a very good plan – the heavens opened and in the two minutes it took to get to the stable we got absolutely drenched. It was hailing too! My sister came running across the field after us with coat and tabards flapping which nearly caused Galahad to panic. I had to scream at her to stop because the hail was so loud. We survived though and by the time we had finished and were back inside the sun was shining again.