2018 has been a slow start for us with my new year starting with me coming down with a virus keeping me off work and limiting my time at the yard to the bare essentials. Therefore, needless to say Scottie has done very little since we had a play in our new mustard matchy matchy set (review to follow soon!) I lunged yesterday morning and woke up this morning thinking that it would be a lovely day to go for a ride.
On our current yard, there aren’t too many horses to go out with. It’s not that people don’t hack, but more that many of the horses are quite reactive and while Scottie is usually very good, he can get over excited and this can really wind other horses up, making things potentially dangerous. So when I arrived at the yard and our usual hacking buddy was already planning to go out with one of the babies, I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to go out by ourselves.
Scottie is a big baby and while is perfectly safe going out hacking by himself, you do need to nanny him round. But today I am really proud of him. He hadn’t been ridden in over a week and he coped with our hack very well. When we first set out we passed two girls returning to the yard on their mares and Scottie showed no intention of napping or turning back to go with them.
Thanks to my amazing planning, I chose to ride the same route as our usual hacking buddy and the baby, but the other way round. Which meant about halfway round our hack we passed them and I expected a bit of an argument and the possibility of having to surrender and go back with them. However, Scottie was a star. As we passed the second horse he stopped and looked behind him. But after a few squeezes and a tap on the shoulder he remembered his job and carried we carried on our way.
Now it wouldn’t be an alone hack if something totally out of our control didn’t happen! And once again, deer were the cause to this drama! Towards the end of our hack, a herd of deer ran across the bridle path ahead of us. Scottie being the superstar he is just stopped and watched them and after a bit of coaxing, he was happy to continue on our hack, which of course meant that 4-5 of the deer decided the grass wasn’t greener after all and ran back across the bridle path in front of us! This time Scottie didn’t need to stop and carried on happily while I kept an eye out for any more deer planning on making a surprise appearance!
So while Scottie was fairly tense throughout the hack, he was incredibly well behaved and I’m really proud at how brave he was despite being terrified! It was a really good start to our riding in 2018!