I grew up in El Paso and during high school moved to my grandmother's cotton farm. That's where I finally got my first horse.
I knew nothing about horses, had never ridden anything but a pony on a line, but I'd run full speed on that horse like you not believe. I have a great photo my father took back then, I'll post it later this week.
I'm going to take advantage of having to do this trip and will spend most of today traveling old roads and finding out how they've changed. My new novel is based in El Paso, and I have been away too long to be able to put you there.
I particularly need to see how downtown has changed.
Anyway, this trip meant that I had a very short runway with Cibolo.
I wanted to work again on our canter. I want to get that take off right. I don't want to trot 3/4 of the way down the runway and canter 5 steps. I mean you'll never get into the sky with that technique...
Ironically a friend at the stables is having a problem at the canter too.
This is Kelly and Davy. They recently added this red roan, Amigo, to their family (having rid themselves of a completely insane, bucking, quarterhorse).
Amigo (formerly Chili) was a trail horse for the longest time. Amigo refuses to canter. Even on a lunge line.
So Kelly brought out her spurs to try. Amigo found them irritating, but still would not canter. My experience with trail mounts is that the operators never canter those horses - not at all. They want them nice and quiet for the city riders.
I imagine after years and years they have little muscle development for cantering. You notice she also uses a tie down - Amigo is often pulling against it.
Any suggestions? I thought she'd have to get him cantering on a lunge line first, but I'm fairly sure she's pushed him pretty hard. She not hesitant about pushing...
Ladies and Gentlemen, prepare for take off...
Here is Cibolo's runway. We trot up and down this road before and after our rides lately. And earlier in the week we worked on cantering.
This time we did much better, but the take off is still slow.
But no head tossing this time. He always puts his ears back when going into the canter, not pinning, but almost as if he's between a pin and a simple turn back. So I'm not sure if he's still giving some resistance or he's listening. I'm going to have someone else look at it and help me read it right.
Most of the time I think he's checking to see if I'm serious. Once I show him that I'm consistent, that I do mean it every time, I hope that will help more than the canter.
We road the trails alone and I really am starting to enjoy our time alone. I need to push past the next boundry - riding past the very familiar trails to the ones a little further out. Slowly, but surely...
The runway home.
See you all in a few days. Stay safe and ride a horse for me. :)