Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Getting ready to ride...

For the last two months or so, we've had so much rain our fields and riding areas were under water. A lot of the sand in the roundpen washed out, and it was just too dangerous and slippery to do anything. Finally, this week, temperatures dropped and it started to snow. I've been waiting patiently for the ground to freeze, and today, it was hard enough that the horses could go back out onto the field. Here are some pictures of the mare band enjoying some hay after romping about. I'm out there in a minute checking the ground to see if I can ride. -Karen Zierler
Well, a couple hours later, and we did it! I was able to get some pictures too, but not great ones, as the batteries on the camera started to die in the cold. I had to put the camera inside my jacket to warm it to get these shots. But, anyway. This is Warrior Vaquera Lark. She's a lesson horse, and the first horse we trained years ago. She's had a break for several weeks, and so I saddled her and we did some lunging in the roundpen. She bucked and had her tail flying while it was snowing, then settled down to a nice working trot and canter. Lark has been in a snaffle and also a snaffle with shanks for years, and I've been wanting to work toward a finished horse (something new for me too). I have a borsal and want to get a mercate to start, but in the mean time, today I used a thick rope halter and lead line as reins to see how she went. It went really well, and she didn't resist, she backed just fine, and we did some light hand work, turns, and a tiny bit of collection. The rope halter gives a bit too much, but still, Lark has been a lesson horse for years and has picked up bad habits with the bit and students, with the rope halter these did not show up, which is a great way to correct again. Anyway, it was snowing like crazy, as you can see while I was up! -Karen Zierler


  1. I like your comment about your beautiful mare learning bad habits from your students; it reminds me how we are always teaching our horses good and bad habits with every thing we do. I have the same problem with my Haflinger. He has so many beginner riders on him that when I ride him he starts out being totally unresponsive.

    1. Thank you Susan, yes, I understand you there. I'm hoping to do ground work with Lark again, and get her back into training so that she's happier and has fun too. :)

  2. Wow looks like snow over there (here too!). Yes I can understand the school horse attitude. Scarlett, Peter's mare, is a bit that way as well. Lark has a gorgeous color! Is she grulla?

  3. Hi Caren, thank you! Yes, she is, actually she is a smokey grulla (she has both the creme gene and the dun gene, she once had a daughter that is a cremello/perlino). Her mother was also a smokey grulla, and her sire is a dun, so Lark maybe is double dun, all her offspring were duns except the perlino. I haven't tested her yet. She's a really neat horse, very quiet usually, and I can go on long rides in the mountains with her. She loves trail too, you know, in the arena, going over bridges, through tires, over poles, and so on. I'm so glad the snow is back, it has been horrible rain for so long.


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