There is faint whiff of Spring in the air this week. Whilst undeniably cold, the sun is out, and the sky is clear.
Yesterday half the team of trail horses started their boot camp to get fit by the end of March.
The criollos were brought out in one big group, and round-penned one at a time. Nothing too heavy yet,simply walk and trot as its been two months that they haven’t done anything.
Next came the little Quarter mare that we are bringing back into work this season after a year off. She was hanging her head over the gate, almost begging to do something. After 20 minutes of good behavior on the lunge, she was allowed to graze on the lawn outside the stables while I talked to Elke.
Shamal and Red came in for a good clean. Neither horse was used last year due to one reason or another. Turned out all winter in a hill paddock, their condition was better than most.
After a brief schooling session I took Shamal out for a slow hack along the top of the ridge. Shamal, a big handsome Palomino stomped past everything that he came across without batting an eye. Bulldozer, men in the vineyards, fast drivers, and a couple of startled pheasants. A nice horse, with a good determined walk; Shamal knows that hes a leader. I feel simply a passenger on his back – but considering hes doing everything right, that’s fine for the time being.
Back at the stables I ride two more horses lightly in the arena, and call it a day. Muscles by this stage are in agony, and its only the first day of boot camp.