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[RC] trail closures/trail ettiquete (sp? sorry) - Kathie Ford

Well, in regards to trail closures and how we look to the public what I think we should all be mindful of as equestrians is that when we are on public lands sharing trails etc., and in the publics view is to ALWAYS remember we can be ambassadors on the trail. Good thoughtful, educational, and safe ambassadors/reps of our horse community.

We can be polite, take time to chat with folks, especially children, more so if the parents are attentive to their childrens safety around us and visa versa, offering water if someone looks like they need it, assistance on the trail, or generally thoughtful and polite attitude while riding out there.

Even if a horse poops, if opportunity is extended, explain that horses are herbivores and horse manure is a fairly good fertilizer, and/or tell them it's biodegradeable and turns into nice dirt when dried out. I've even done this, tried to explan their diet to children who go "eeeuuuu" "poop"...and ya know what? They are interested and learn, then its not such a gross thing to them! :) Nobody likes to see poop obviously, but it is what it is and horses can't go in outhouses!..(although mine once almost followed me in one, one time!! hehehe) I've noticed that taking the time to chat sometimes is really well received and appreciated. If we tend to just fly by that can be mistaken for rudeness or even thought of as unsafe by the public.

So basically, in my long winded thing here (sorry) I think it really does help if we watch our own behavior and manners so we can be a positive influence for our community/sport and folks won't mind us out there at all. In fact, rather enjoy it!

kathie

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