Monday I felt like doing some jumping. Scarlet warmed up well and I hopped over the low cross rail that was set up as a warm up. He wasn’t jumping very enthusiastically but he doesn’t love trotting over jumps. I hopped of him and moved another cross rail to a more respectable height and then moved a vertical to something that made me a little unsure. It was only one hole above where I’ve jumped before but it looked sooo much higher. There was an oxer set up just below 2′ as well.
I cantered over the cross rail a few times both directions and then aimed for the oxer. It seems odd to do that one first but it was lower and I knew he was going to go over it. He feels so good going over oxers. He definitely was anticipating it the next time we came around the corner. I love when he drags me to the fences.
After a brief walk break, I cantered us around for the vertical. The sun was setting so the shadows were a little weird and this fence lay in a shadow. I think Scarlet either didn’t see it well or didn’t really realize how high it was because he gave it a really good peak. We made it over regardless. This horse is so stinking good at getting over fences with no momentum. I wish I had someone to push us in lessons to figure out just what he can actually do.
Having made it over the fence, I took us back around the arena and we soared over it super nicely this time. It was smooth and felt great. Holly was watching from where she was lunging Uno and she said he tucked his feet super nice. I gave him big pats and called that a good one to finish on. I measured the vertical later and it was around 2’6″. XD We’re getting bigger and bigger. I need to be more gungho about raising the fences to real heights for us now. Scarlet definitely jumps better with higher fences.
Wednesday and Thursday the training goal ended up being centered around trails. I did some stuff on the flat and then wanted to just walk around. I thought we should probably do the trail loop again and figured it would be a good time to do it the other way.
Cue the Twilight Zone music.
Scarlet lost his freaking mind. No way was he going to go down the trail the other way. *gasp* THE HORROR!
The thing is, he wasn’t spooking. He wasn’t scared. He was pissed we were leaving the barn. This entrance to the loop is closer to his stall and he was not having it. But neither was I. I was not having his backing up, moving sideways and just generally ignoring my leg. I normally wear my spurs below the spur rests on my boots so I use them just for an additional nudge when needed. I moved those up and told him that my leg means FORWARD! We spun in small circles that I directed slowly moving up the trail. I knew I wasn’t going to get him fully out on the trail but I wanted to reach a reasonable point. It really wasn’t that far up the trail.
When we reached it, we turned and went back. He kept trying to jig his way back. If he ignored my request for a walk, we stopped and backed up. And then repeated about 4 or 5 times before I could get a reasonably responsive walk up to the point I wanted. That was Wednesday.
Normally, getting into a fight with a horse isn’t a great idea. It’s not good to push them when they are really afraid or have serious feeling about something as it might ruin their trust. However, I knew exactly why Scarlet was being a pill and it was not an acceptable reason. Proof is in Thursday. After our ride, we headed for the trail. I had moved my spurs in prep for a fight. I had to ask once but Scarlet moved forward at my urging without spurs for the rest of the short section. He wasn’t happy still but it was forward, listening and respectful. We did that one short section, even going a bit further than the day before and then called it quits. I’m going to keep this up until we can go both ways along the trail loop without issue.