Something happened to my farrier. He disappeared. I'm not sure what happened, or if he got hurt, or what. But after two weeks I realized I needed to get someone else out to see Lily.
Since we have been trying to get her sound, I was nervous. I didn't want to go back to someone who might take her back down a bad road. So I took a leap. I contacted a barefoot trimmer.
Lily has never been barefoot on the front, she has always seemed too ouchy. But this is a good time to try. I don't have a lot of time to ride, so she'd have time to toughen up. And it didn't make sense to me that she could be barefoot on the back, but not the front. I mean I know there is more weight in the front, but its not that light in the hind end either. Besides given I lost my farrier to the wind I felt it was time to try.
Lily has been barefoot for three weeks. Sunday we took a ride up the rocky ridge line.
No ouchy ness. Zero. She had beelined it up there. Something I've learned about Lily is she is very curious about her environment, she likes to explore more than I realized. When I looked at that ridge she headed right to it, as if she had been wondering what was up there too. We were riding alone, something we do often now, and she is continually expanding the rubber band of comfort. She's not very barn sour, but I do hesitate riding too far because I don't want to be alone in places I haven't ridden before. I guess I'm working on my rubber band too.
Then if course, we had to ride back down.
I usually don't like riding down steep inclines, but I got us into a narrow path where I couldn't dismount. So while it was not scene out of "Man from Snowy River," it was steep - way past my comfort zone.
But she was as sure footed as a goat, I could feel her confidence as she picked her way down. I don't know how to explain it without getting all "zen," as trailrider would say, but I sensed that she felt different about her steps, as if she could feel her way down differently than she had before.
And we did it bit less too.
It was a good ride after a very long and draining work time (job is great, no worries, just some tough things to work on). We both grew on that ride. The farrier/trimmer will be out to recheck her, and while she is still not sound at the clock wise trot, she is better. I wonder if this approach will give her relief.
I hope so. But if nothing else, we can walk up hillsides. And back down.