Saturday, May 1, 2010

Odds and Ends

This is the last post of my 'catching up' series. I will start working on my Ricky Quinn Clinic posts soon!

I finally broke down and bought a new bit for Mercy. It's the Myler comfort snaffle on a loose ring. It was pricey, very pricey, but I couldn't find a used one (go figure) and it is a bit that I will never let go of either. I bought it for Mercy because I believe she has a low palate. A single jointed bit, whether a loose ring, eggbutt, or D-ring, seemed to cause her a lot of pain in her mouth. I know many trainers and riders would say, "So what? Let them figure it out." Well, now I would talk right back to them and say "I have been using a single jointed bit on her for over 3 years and she isn't getting better. In fact, now I think she is afraid when I pick up on the reins, so no. I will do what I can to make riding enjoyable for her too."

So far she seems to really like it. It took her a few rides to relax with it, but now, even if I need to get serious with her, she accepts the pressure a little easier. She gaps her mouth less and it is much easier for her to give to the bit when I ask for collection.

A few weeks after purchasing the new bit for Mercy, my sister and I headed out to some local trails for a quick ride. It was sunny out, but there was a slight breeze and it wasn't really that warm. We headed up into the hills instead of riding the pipeline this time. We meandered past the Jr. High school and came out on an old logging road that goes up a hill at a pretty good incline. It had been quite a while since we had run the girls, and going uphill made it less likely that we would have any troubles. So away we went!
Neither of us really let the horses gallop, but they were going along at a pretty good clip. At the top we broke back down to a walk and waded our way over a VERY muddy trail and into a deeper forest trail.
Since we didn't have a map, we just took a whole bunch of switchbacks. Some trails we know (from boarding out in that area years ago) but there are many new ones now. We got turned around a few times, but no worries. We had time to kill. When we were making our way back to the trails we know well, Kimberly suggested we go visit the miner's memorial. We hadn't been there for probably well over 8 years, if not more. And wouldn't you know it, we look up ahead and a sign on a tree said it was up ahead.
4 miners lost their lives when the mine collapsed way back in this area's early history. A memorial has been created where once there were only 4 wooden crosses. It's nice to see the dedication other's have for this area and it's history. Next time, when there aren't bugs attacking us and the horses, I will get the date and names of the mine victims.

1000 feet to the north is the caved in mine. There are danger signs all over the place and in order to continue on the trails you actually have to cross the cave-in on a narrow section of earth still holding. Definitely not for the light of heart.

No comments: