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[RC] ready for an LD - Nina Vasiliev

Sounds great! Maybe a week before, do 15 miles, trotting as much of the trail as possible. Then let him rest up till the ride. You want him fresh and smiling. I might take a SHORT walk with him that last week or do some no-pressure arena work. But only if it's restful stuff, just being together, stretching your legs. Or leave him in the pasture with a buddy. Walk out and give him carrots a few times.

Doing an LD moderately should be your goal, but I'm not sure you'll finish if you walk most of it. So start slowly, maybe 5-10 minutes after the start time to avoid the herd pressure. Then when he's sane, and warmed up, trot everything safe if your horse is doing well. Don't worry when you have to walk because of trail or 'cause your horse needs to walk. It is not a waste of time. Then when you can, trot.

The day before, I pre-ride the last mile. I let him go as fast as he wants to...as long as we stay at a walk. :-) He gets out on the trail after trailering, and we set the mood for behavior. This way my horse isn't too surprised when we start the "race" at a walk the next day.
And he might perk up during the end of ride the next day when he recognizes the last mile. I know I do.

Enjoy yourself. Enjoy the trail. Make sure your horse is smiling.

Have fun!


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