Riding Rusty

Which ever Rusty happens to show up for the day.

He is such a conundrum. Flighty and reactive. Scared of nothing, a big puppy dog. Heavy on my aids, so light and responsive it scares me. That horse is going to drive me insane, sometimes from the shear joy of riding him. When he is good he’s so good. A shift of my weight send him off in what ever direction I think about going. An exhale causes him to slam on the brakes. I can feel him move beneath me more clearly than any other horse ever has. His gaits are spectacular and since I have finally learned to stop trying to get a horse on the bit and instead ride them forward working from behind, he carries himself so round and straight. Most of the time.

This time I recorded our ride. It didn’t cause total failure but our ride wasn’t as good as the ones before. I could tell from the ground that he wasn’t with me, I got on anyway. He didn’t do any of the very unpleasant things he had been doing for awhile there, he just wasn’t all there. He was fidgety with the bit, lots of mouthing and head movement. He wanted to fall into his circles. Mostly to the right, or we may never have made it to the left, he dropped his shoulder in and stuck his head out to the outside. I was working hard to get him straight, asking for a slight leg yield to the outside. It doesn’t look pretty, I was hoping to get his prettyness on video.

I did get a little bit of the thing that has been thrilling me the most lately. I laid out some ground poles for the girls and their “riding lessons” or for them to play on. That is mostly what they do. Who would have thought that jumping tiny cross rails would make for great riding lessons for girls who want to play at rodeo.

Anyway. I’ve been trotting him over the ground rails. I never noticed anything spectacular with horses before. Or maybe I never did it before. This time I seem to have gotten the spacing correct, except for one, and he is doing everything that is hoped for when trotting poles. The lift to his back is breath taking. He rounds up, extends his stride, and reaches over the poles. I don’t always do the best job sitting it, in the video I flop around like a fish, but it is so incredibly fun to ride.

The point of the video is the first little bit of him trotting the poles. The rest is mostly just admiring how gorgeous he is. When did my ugly little duckling get so big, and beautiful, and Morgany? He used to look like a scrawny ugly little thing with a neck far more quarter horse than Morgan. He grew up!


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