ridecamp@endurance.net: Re: [endurance] Re: Loose reins

Re: [endurance] Re: Loose reins

Tina Hicks (hickst@puzzler.nichols.com)
Fri, 5 Jul 1996 11:23:31 -0500

At 8:58 AM 7/5/96, Linda Flemmer wrote:
>I'm reading this thread about safety & longer reins w/ interest. I
>ride w/ 10' (& sometimes longer) reins so that I can tail when I need
>to. I have never had a problem, but I can see that the potential is
>Do you find that the 8 1/2' reins are longer enough to tail?
I am finding I like to use a shorter rein for riding (much like more
traditional reins) and use a seperate rope/rein for tailing. I have found I
don't like having to take the reins over the head to use for jogging or
unsnap one side for tailing. I also don't really like using the reins while
attached to the bit for leading/running. I use a running martingale when I
use a bit and then that's a real pain - gotta unsnap the reins, take them
out of the running, tail or jog, and then re-do the whole thing.

What I have started doing with a piece of climbing rope is tieing it to his
noseband (or halter if you use one under/instead of the bridle) and
bringing it back the saddle - much the same way a mecate on a bosal is
brought back to the saddle. I just tie it up with some of the latigo on the
front of my saddle or tie it thru the swell. Then when I get off I simple
put the reins over the swell (I ride in an endurance saddle, in an english
saddle you might want to place your reins under one stirrup like when
lungeing), undo the slip-knot I have holding the climbing rope and we're
ready to go. Much, much easier for me than using my reins as a
tailing/jogging rope as that involves all sorts of undoing and redoing.

For the record, Embers is not very large and does not have a tremendously
long neck so 10ft. reins are waayyy too much rein for him (yes, I know how
to hold the reins and where the bite should go) - but on him if I'm riding
on contact the bite comes halfway down to his knees :->. I tend to ride
primarily with the reins loose and bridged in one hand on the trail and
with 10" reins there is so much extra rein that I end up looping that up
and holding in the bridge too.

However, I think you are right -for a larger and/or longer necked horse,
the length of the rein would not be an issue - tho I don't think I'll ever
go back to using my reins for tailing/jogging - really like the extra rope.

Tina and the crew
Huntsville, AL