DUNE and MOM
Though getting behind on posting, for a while I managed to keep a log of daily events on both Dune and Luna. The following is a log of the fourth day of Dune’s training and a recap of Dune’s training bringing us up to today. Day after day I follow the same routine with not much new to report. I have to believe that Dune is getting a little more reliable every day, although progress does not show very dramatically as it does at the beginning.
Training Dune Day #4 April 22
Tonight Dune blasted past me, bumping me out of the way when I wanted to catch him. It took me half an hour to catch him after that. When I finally got him in the round pen I pushed harder than usual. The tried-and-true strategy is to say, “if you want to runaway– runaway “, but this strategy takes a long time in an open field. It only takes a few minutes in the round pen. He stood nicely while I put the saddle on him, although he is starting to be worried about the cinch. For that reason I gradually tighten the cinch in increments slowly and gently. I used the bosal. He received it the same as a halter and I didn’t have to pull so hard. I pulled him both ways from the ground. I rode him bareback around the round pen for a few minutes. He was tractable. I opened the gate from his back and took a little trail ride down to the driveway and a little farther.
On a trail ride I forget about the dog sometimes. About 100 yards from our driveway the dog came out of the bushes and startled Dune. For a few wild leaps I tried to hold him back but I thought I might lose my seat in the struggle. I just let him go (remember, I was bareback). He sprinted out and after 50 yards I was able to pull him to a stop. We rode a walk quietly back to the round pen after that.
Training Dune recap June 19, 2015
I’ve been riding Dune somewhat inconsistently for almost 2 months. The days are so similar that I don’t have much new to share. Sometimes he’s a little better; sometimes he is a little worse. The drama and the danger of mounting an untrained horse, which include runaways and bucking episodes, appear to be over, but I know there are cowboy moments lurking just under the surface. He’s quite calm when I’m in the saddle, especially going down the road. He’s more worried about the training pen and oddly stressed about ground training. He is sometimes crabby with me, shaking his head violently. He is light on the bridle, backs up fairly consistently and does the half pass both ways awkwardly. I haven’t introduced a snaffle yet; the bosal seems to be working nicely. I’ve trotted and cantered with no worry or incident. There is an element of faith required to keep persevering with training. This faith is propped up by long-time experience of seeing horses improved with steady consistent riding.