Today was in the 80's! It was so warm that I decided it'd be mean to ride in the arena so I saddled Cody up and we went on a trail ride.
Because of the construction (they had a flagger and the highway closed to 1 lane under the interstate bridge), I chose to go a different direction. We road alongside the interstate on a side road for quite a ways, and then we still ended up going under the interstate bridge but on a much less busy road, so it was nice because Cody could walk right down the middle of the road and blow at all the stuff around. She actually did really well going under the bridge. It really is a scary thing when those huge loud semi's suddenly appear in view right over the top of them. I just told her what a good girl she was for being so brave and she went through fine. Cautiously, but fine. And there were porta-potties, and other construction things at this bridge too, but no one was working on it today. We also had to cross railroad tracks (she needed a lot of time to look at them and had to test the footing several times before she believed me that it was okay to cross over).
Then we took a little dirt road that used to be called Starlight Ave. but is now called Arm Road after the county renamed all their roads (so not romantic!). Starlight used to be where a lot of underage kids would find a pull off spot and have big parties in the woods because it's rather secluded. We rode for quite a ways down Starlight (it will always be Starlight to me). Starlight is mostly dirt, some parts of it are gravelly, but mostly it's sandy dirt surrounded by a mature forest of oaks and jack pine. I had Cody's hoof boots on because she is still rather flatfooted and I don't want to bruise her feet on random rocks, but perhaps next time I'll take them off. She walked out well and even though it was quite warm, we did a lot of trotting and cantering. The dogs were not along (because I had to ride along the road), so there Cody was a little uncomfortable when she heard squirrels rustling in the woods (usually the dogs are crashing around and I think that makes her feel more safe). Once, she jumped sideways so fast at a tiny rustle, that if I hadn't grabbed the saddle horn, I would have come off! And she can walk under an interstate bridge, but a tiny squirrel...horses. She got better as we went.
By the time we got back home, she was sweaty but relaxed. I took her down to the pond where the kids were playing in their new paddle-boat (they are spoiled rotten by their grandma and grandpa, but then again, so am I so how can I complain!). I rode her out into it and before I could react, she had laid down and soaked my boot! I hollered and kicked and she got back up so I took her saddle off and then let her roll around in it without me on. She laid back down three more times, but didn't quite know how to roll without getting her head wet, so I stood her back up and dumped water over to to rinse all her sweat off.
Then my mom came by with the camera and video'd while I rode her back through the pond.
Then she was wet and my boots were soaked, so I rode in the trailer in the back of our rhino and lead Cody trotting along behind through the wooded trails to get back to the barn. She stayed right behind and kept up well, but then she's been a pack horse before she she understands the concept.
Ranch Journal ~ February 19, 2018
8 hours ago