I rode Wings both Saturday and Sunday this weekend. Both were solo trail rides with perfect weather. Saturday started out sunny and cool, which morphed into cloudy and cold (the best!!). Sunday ground conditions were more slick due to rain on Saturday night, but the raindrops held off all day and I was treated to yet another chilly overcast day.
Both days I rode alone, although I checked with my sister to see if she was available (she wasn’t – she gets to do much more exciting things like foxhunt on the weekends). I don’t mind riding alone so much. I’ve done it most of my life and it has just become routine.
Wings tends to drag his feet when we first get started, and for the first 20 minutes he did his best to convince me that he was too tired, the rocks were too hard, the hills were too steep etc, etc. I will say this for him. He is a horse that generally tends to conserve energy. I actually like this trait because unlike Justice who will run himself into the ground, Wings has a tad more self preservation.
Wings can also be a mite barn sour, and his sense of direction is exceptional (I remember a number of years ago I actually got lost in a labyrinth of unfamiliar trails and I dropped the reins and that horse got me home!) he doesn’t do anything bad per se. He just likes to look in the general direction of home, bend his body in the general direction of home, and walk as slow as possible away from home. Every now and then he will make a feeble attempt at turning around, which obviously rarely gets him anywhere. However, once he figures out that you are riding in a loop he picks up the pace, clearly eager to get it all over with as soon as possible. He is much more nimble than Justice – for a big horse with somewhat icky conformation, he actually has quite animated movement and picks up his feet pretty high, particularly at a walk.
We have less than 3 weeks now until Wings’ big move to CS, and already I am finding myself concerned. What am I hoping to accomplish through this? Really? Obviously, while he is being boarded at a real barn, he can be given joint supplements on a daily basis. He has an old injury to his left hind hock, and I am pretty sure that he has arthritis in it. Aside from that, I will be getting him in shape…but for what? I guess the obvious answer is our upcoming camping/trail riding trips this summer. I have a long list of places I hope to go. Uwharrie again, Moses Cone, Grayson Highlands, and Moss Foundation are all on my list. I think Ashley also wants to visit Leatherwood, and I would like to try Umstead and/or the American Tobacco Trail as day trips at some point as well!