Sunday, January 11, 2015

2014 in review

This is going to be a difficult post to write,  because I don't feel like Max and I accomplished much of anything.  I tend not to set concrete goals, and 2014 was no exception. There was a goal floating around in my head of getting the boy into shape. But most of them were goals made on the fly when a problem crept up.

Max came home right before Christmas in 2013. One of my goals was just to feel confident riding him out of the paddock and pasture. The pasture still isn't fenced, but the trees that grew along the old fence line provide a sense of security.  I'll have to write another post on the progress we are making on getting our property in shape.  I think I accomplished this goal pretty quickly given the crazy winter we had. 

After the big winter storm in early January 2014. Riding outside of the pasture to go see if the roads had been plowed.

Some other things we've been working on is mud. He hates it.  We have a tiny ditch that drains into our creek that gets muddy. I spent a half hour one day trying to get him to walk through this muddy ditch instead of jumping it.  We finally stopped when he took off cantering towards the pasture and I fell off. Thankfully he stopped when I managed to fall in front of him. I still don't know if he will walk through that ditch when it's muddy. Shortly after that it got pretty dry and he's walked through it without any problems. 

Then there's the creek.  I'm counting this as a true accomplishment. In the spring, we had to fight to get down into the creek.  He truly doesn't have a problem with water. Rather, I think it's the muddy bank.  He would refuse to get in under saddle, but would follow me right in when leading him.  Now he goes in without much of a fuss.  It probably doesn't hurt that there are tasty water grasses on the other side and I let him eat these. 

One other minor accomplishment that happened very recently is leg yielding.  I'm not good with working with him on specific tasks, but the last saddled ride we had, I realized he was beginning to move off my leg.  We even did some turns on the hind and fore on the fence line.  

We didn't have any lessons together, and didn't get off our property last year, but at least we accomplished something.

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