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Re: [RC] Why we ride - DESERTRYDR1

I'm pretty excited tonight, and have no one to share it with but my Ridecamp 
buddies.  The thrill of bringing a young equine along is one of my favorite 

I took my 4 yr old molly mule, Destiny, (the great brown endurance mule of 
the future) out on the trails today for the third time.  She had about 45 days 
of training this spring, and I've ridden her some in the arena and round pen, 
but so far my rides out had been less than successful.  The first time, she 
would just turn around, and I was a bit shy to MAKE her go, and didn't have 
tools to do it.  Then a couple weeks ago I took her to a training clinic put 
on by the gal who trained her.  The clinician is Steve Rother, who is an up and 
coming Natural Horsemanship kind of guy.  He's been doing clinics for several 
years here in the Northwest.  

After the clinic, I felt a lot more confidence that I could make her work for 
me.  Last weekend I took her out by ourselves, (more guts than brains 
sometimes) and still had the big problem with her just quitting, and turning 
and fighting with me.  The terrain was not very friendly for this kind of 
activity, so we got about a mile and a half, then came back.  

Today my riding partner and I went out.  Destiny started her usual stuff, 
just about as soon as I got on.  We had walked out a half mile, to get past the 
asphalt road, and I guess she wasn't in the mood to work.  I kept after her, we 
had a two-lane jeep trail to work on, so I had some room to maneuver.  I just 
kept turning her in circles, releasing the pressure when she was going the 
way I wanted, and finally she quit fighting so hard.  We actually got over two 
miles out, with walking and trotting, and she acts like she's finally starting 
to see the light.  

All the way home she was good, except for taking off a bit when we passed the 
white sign that she spooked at last time.  

Maybe four miles doesn't seem like much, but it's well on the way to our 
first 50!  For the most part, I actually felt in control, and the times when 
was going forward, she was very light and responsive.  She's got the nicest 
trot, and a fast walk.  Watch for us in 2007 for our first 25's.  jeri


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