Sunday, December 21, 2008

Riding in a Winter Wonderland

Trail Riding the Horses in Winter It was snowing yet I still wanted to head to the barn to ride my mare. My friends and I decided to head out early so that the predicted heavy snowfall would arrive after we were done riding. It’s been so cold that we haven’t been out riding much lately so we figured we’d work the horses in the indoor arena. My friend’s daughter rides a young horse who can get quite rambunctious when not ridden often, so it's best for him to be contained in an arena.

But it was so beautiful with the snow that after just a short time in the arena we just had to head out onto the trails. What a gorgeous day to ride outside! The temperature was in the 20’s so we had to dress warmly – my new winter riding pants came in handy! – and with the snow-covered trails we needed to keep the horses at a walk, since we couldn't tell what was underneath the snow.

In some years past we had gotten ice before snow and then the trails were too dangerous to ride on, but not this year. And since only a few people had been out before us, the snow had not had a chance to get packed down and slippery. We felt confident that - at a walk - our horses would be able to find their footing.

It was a wonderful ride through the woods. I know I enjoyed it and my mare seemed to as well. As we were riding along she kept “fluttering” her nose – maybe she was just clearing the snow from her nostrils, but I like to think that she was expressing her enjoyment too!

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