As is the tradition, the girls had to do some bareback riding in the snow. Vicki loves to ride bareback in the winter because it keeps her warmer. Vicki decided to try out Dakota, Alex’s new pony, while Amanda rode Huey. This was Vicki’s first bareback ride on Dakota and it went well. Both girls had a good time and no one fell off.
Alex and I will be doing a trail ride in the snow after lunch.
It’s not too hard to convince the girls to ride. Tonight Vicki decided to try out Calli while Amanda rides Huey. Don’t all 7 year old girls ride 16.2hh 6 year old Thoroughbreds?
Of course, neither girl can give enough leg to make their mount trot without the help of a lunge whip from Mom.
When Amanda was 18 months old, she went on her first trail ride in a buddy saddle on King. Since then, she has logged many hours in the buddy saddle. Earlier this summer, Huey, a 12yo, 11hh Dartmoor pony joined the herd and Amanda immediately claimed him as her pony. Since then, Alex and Vicki have been allowed to borrow Huey for some rides and to help train him, but Huey is Amanda’s pony.
At 3 years old, Amanda is more dedicated to riding than both of her siblings. You can’t get a horse out of the barn without Amanda grabbing her helmet and following along. And Huey is a rock star for little kids. Amanda has gotten to the point that she can ride Huey by herself in the arena at the walk and trot.
So today, Amanda got to trail ride on HER pony instead of on the buddy saddle. I rode Calli and had a lead line connected to Huey’s halter so Amanda didn’t have to do any steering. A nice short 45 minute ride through the forest with the whole family and all 5 horses/ponies. Amanda and Huey did great. And Calli, my 6yo TB mare, did awesome with me riding western and a lead rope wrapping around her side and butt to Huey. It was a great afternoon.
I’m sure by the spring Amanda will be insisting she can ride without the lead rope!
A few weeks back, Huey joined the farm. After an adjustment period with Devil and Precious, we turned him out with King and Calli too. The result was surprising. Huey, the 11 hand Dartmoor, drove King away from the other ponies. Calli was allowed to stay with King initially, but once she came into heat, Huey claimed her too.
Now Huey keeps his band at close hold while King grazes alone. Huey was gelded late (around 5 or 6) and clearly knows how to be a stud. While King spent many years in charge, life in nature, sometimes a younger stud takes over.
Saturday night I flew back from WA. Sunday, Vicki and I hooked up the horse trailer and hopped in the truck. 8 hours later we arrived at our hotel just outside Baltimore. First thing Monday morning, we went to Hedgehog Hollow Farm, which specializes in breeding Dartmoor ponies. Anna had been emailing with the farm and Vicki was along to specifically test ride Huey (she even got to miss a day of school). Everything seemed fine, so we loaded up and headed back home.
Huey is a 12 year old Dartmoor gelding. He is just over 11 hands and makes a great addition to our herd. He is barefoot and has never had shoes. He also lived outside in pasture in a herd setup. The kids are very excited to have another pony. Today, Huey got to know Precious and Devil. Devil wasn’t too happy about sharing Precious’ attention with another boy. Since Huey has never been contained in electric fence, we spent the day monitoring things and fixing fences. Now if the rain will stop, the kids will get to ride him.