Horsing Around

I harrowed seventy acres of alfalfa the other day; when I was finished the field looked magnificent, however now I have seventy acres of rocks to pick up, tumble weeds to burn, and pocket gophers to trap. Who says farming isn’t glamorous?

The spring wind here is pretty relentless; it got so windy here it blew the magnet curios off the refrigerator door. I have been training horses regardless. I try to ignore the fact that it’s blowing like hell, so my horse doesn’t dwell on it either. The three I have been riding have been eating high protein alfalfa all winter; they are over fed and under worked which manifests itself as an edgy, high octane performance on the trail. I have taken to feeding straight grass hay, combined with exorcise to get them lined out, so they don’t go air born when a tumble weed rolls by.

Buddy Love, my seven year old appendix bred buckskin is green broke. I started him last year and he’s trying which is all I ask from any horse. I was getting a hold of his feet the other day in the round pen and when I asked him to lope on a left lead. He kept dropping his head like he wanted to buck, then he would balk, trying anything to resist my influence. I got down and nonchalantly tied his head around and proceeded to make him pivot circles. After about twelve revolutions I climbed back on and with his full concentration loped out on the left lead then circled onto the right, dropped down to a trot and back into the lope again on both leads. He preformed admirably so I put him up on that note.

My three yearlings watched the exhibition from the rail where they were tied. They are learning to stand still. I put each of them though a series of simple maneuvers at the end of the lead rope, they are gradually working up to a point where I can put a loop of rope over their hind quarters and lace it thought the halter, that way I can bring up the rear, while simultaneously leading the head. Every horse I train from birth to retirement is taught the fundamentals of pressure with a release for the slightest inertia in the right direction. The end result is an eloquent performance of subtle pressure and release, where the communication is all non verbal, yet speaks volumes. The end result is another good horse day. A wise man once said: “The best thing for the inside of a man is the outside of a horse.” Who said that?


One Response

  1. The same man who said:

    No hour of life is wasted that is spent in the saddle. Winston Churchill


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