So, as you can imagine, I went into today's xc outing with two conflicting thoughts running through my mind: Life is short, you never know what might happen, so yolo, go for it and have fun! (But also, don't get hurt/ take unnecessary risks because G needs you right now!)
|Kind of a grey day out there, but the rain is much needed, so no complaints!|
I ended up with the mindset that we'd gallop around and have fun, but keep it conservative as far as actually pushing the boundaries.
|Yes, totally stealing media from previous coursewalks, lol. This is not a big drop, but still scary to me!|
We started at the down bank. Of all the things out there, down banks or jumping on a steep downhill scare me the most. We made huge progress confidence wise today though, cantering up and off like no big deal. I think I finally figured out how to ride them earlier this spring (simple, actually, for the love of everything just STOP LOOKING DOWN already!) so now it's just a matter of more miles where they feel as easy as they have been this spring.
|Rock pile. B loves this because it's open and easy to read, plus coming back up the hill towards the trailer parking.|
Everything in the bottom field was entry height or above, so we just did the "little" rock pile log and then up and down the bank. Midge was a star, she came out excited and forward - I think she's figured out the xc game now and she approves!
We moved on to the ditches, which for whatever reason have never worried either of us. Training level ditch, check, ha ha, go Midge! Then loop back to the log pile between the ditches, again, fine, although she backed off a bit the first time as it's a more solid looking thing than we normally encounter.
|Log pile between the ditches|
Next, water, which again pony has zero issues with. We even cantered off the drop into water because I found some courage.
|Little drop into water|
Then, I was set loose to string together some lines and courses. Again, proud of the both of us because we didn't just stick to little logs, we jumped some bigger ones, some log piles, a little palisade, and even some stuff going downhill.
By the time we were both tired, we'd jumped almost all the Pre-Entry stuff out there, plus a number of Entry fences that rode just fine.
The one thing I didn't push was the houses...B is not a fan at all of those and there wasn't anything small enough where I felt like we could still hop over it from an awkward distance or even a standstill and get her confident. They would have all required a forward, confident pony on a good rythym, so I opted to not pick that battle. Because let's be real, there are no houses at Starter level anyway and pony was being so good that sometimes you just need to reward that :)
|Hard to see, but this has a little drop in terrain behind and therefore I needed to be brave.|
With the ferries and driving, our two hour lesson was a 12 hour day. But, totally worth it, there's nothing better than galloping along on my favorite pony.