Jan 29, 2011

There’s One in Every Crowd

Lori on Ginger

I went out to the barn twice today. The first time to check on how much of the round bale was left. Not much. They were licking the bowl, so to speak. I dropped down a couple bales of alfalfa to keep them happy for a few hours. We'll hand feed them until tomorrow morning when the corral will once again be frozen and not quite so messy moving in another bale. I went out a little later thinking I might take Windy for a short ride. I slipped on ice on the driveway walking around the garage and I almost went down. Decided then I wasn't that committed to riding today. I stopped in the tack room and grabbed a plastic scraper and decided instead, to clean my mare.

Corie on Zip

Yesterday, I took two horses to Two Rivers; one for me and one for a guest rider, Lori. Windy was dirtier than I have seen her in a long time and I swear, Blue took a roll in the mud and then tried to wipe himself with hay just to get out of loading up to go anywhere! The two cleanest horses, Ginger and Butter, made the travel team. Ginger usually is clean and pretty good for a guest rider, unless anyone runs. But considering there was still snow on the ground, I figured we probably would be taking it pretty slow. Butter is very buddy sour, but when with Ginger, she is usually okay. I gave Lori the choice of which mare she wanted to ride and she chose Ginger. I saddled the Butter-Nut-Case.

Carol on Chief

Talk about amateur hour; just what horses wore these saddles prior to this ride? All the horses have their own saddle so rigging is not usually an issue. Since Case's saddle doesn't fit me (nor him, any more), I brought Blue's for Butter, but tossed in a smaller girth. For some reason, I had a heckuva time saddling both mares. None of the rigging was right. I am sure Lori wondered just what she was getting into.

There were seven of us riding yesterday. The wildlife management area is still closed until February 1, so we rode through the park and around the lakes. The snow was still up over the horses’ ankles but the footing was good. Butter had a few moments going out, but nothing too naughty yet. We weaved our way through the woods on the north side of the park, crossed the only water crossing and headed out down a service road until it ended. When we turned to come back, Ginger got a little high headed for Lori and Butter was starting to lose her head a little. I rode out a couple bucks and some other general nonsense she was dishing out. Lori commented that she was grateful she was riding who she was riding.

Corie/Zip & Terri on "her Ginger" not to be confused with "my Ginger"

Butter would settle down for a while and then I'd ask her to do something she didn't want to do and she would freeze up or run through the bit or shoulder. She lacks the softness that Windy has and braces against the bit. A trainer who as riding with us, (and there always is when your horse is naughty!) gratefully pushed me through a few "oh, sh*t" moments. But after three hours, I was glad the ride was over. I wasn't up for the fight anymore. There are lots of times I am with other riders and see someone struggling with a horse; sucks to be me, this time.


It does make me sad because Butter has been a good little ride for all of us. Primarily ridden by my youngest son, she got away with some bad habits that he couldn't fix when he was little and that he encouraged as he got older. Now lack of use and barn and buddy sourness adds to her unpleasantness. The trainer gave me some suggestions of what we could do to work through these issues; all good advice. Hopefully I'll find the gumption to work on it this spring. She is a good little mare and I hate to see her or whoever is riding her, struggle so much along the way.

The prettiest bay mare.... yeah, right.

I got Windy cleaned up this afternoon, but didn't throw a leg over her. There will be nicer days ahead.


  1. Everytime you write about Butter I am reminded of Bella, the horse we almost bought last summer. She looks so much like Butter and has a similar attitude. Her new owners are the caretakers of the horse rescue and tell me that she balks, bucks and tries to get out working for them, too.
    After reading about your son and his relationship with Butter, I think I finally understand why Bella carried that 9 year old little boy (never been on a horse before) for 3 hours on a competitive trail ride, while she bucked my own 13 year old son to the moon.

    That little boy let Bella get away with anything she wanted, and he just basically followed the group of riders, never asking much from her. And my own son asked probably more than Bella was used to, especially considering she saw no reason to work because there was no other horses around to follow around. ahhhh...light bulb moments.

    Anyway, I think it's great that you're still getting out to ride, even in the snow. I wish my girlfriends I rode last year in the snow, could do the same, but there's been a lot of changes afoot for many of them, and well, me, too.

    Good for you sitting out the Butter bucks, too. :)


  2. And that's why I haven't ridden in almost two years. Because that's always my horse and I'm always that rider.


  3. It was probably good to have the trainer along this time. Don't ever feel bad about a misbehaving horse- instead, take advantage of the free advice.

    In spite of horsey attitude, I hope you guys enjoyed yourselves. Looks beautiful with the snow.

  4. I hate it when I'm that rider too. It only happens for me when I'm taking the green horse but still it's a stressful ride. and, of course, I have to take the green horse if I ever expect it to be anything else but green. Still sometimes a nice quiet ride is a good thing.

    Glad you made it through your ride with no serious wrecks and that you had someone to help you through. That's always good.


I am so glad you stopped by and look forward to hearing from you! Do come again.