Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Driving yet?

People around the ranch are beginning to ask when. There is a lot of support for this, but for some people it is going very slowly. I explain that I am taking lessons and when we are both ready, I will take him to the trainer's to get him started with the cart.

I told Susie yesterday that a big part of my training must be to get all the horses on the ranch as ready as possible so nobody freaks out. My message is always that I have a professional trainer, I am taking lessons on trained horses first, I don't want anyone to be afraid, I am concerned for your horses too.

So, here is Janow in his harness. He did not want to stand, but he did when I told him to. His body language shouts that he does not really want to, but he is.

I put the hold backs up through the backstrap. They don't go here, they go on the shafts, but without shafts, they help stabilize the breeching a little when they are here. The traces are not buckled on to the breastcollar so I put the backband through the trace buckles to keep the breast collar from flopping. When there is a cart, the traces will connect it and so the breast collar will be firmly in place.

Janow had been longed in harness several times and it was no longer a big deal. He took a while to get used to having the breeching across his back legs. Monday, I ground drove him. It began with 5 seconds of total confusion, then he went "Ah Ha!" and it was a yawner from there on out.

Yesterday I decided to ground drive a bit and then double longe. We had a lot of bobbles. In the end, it was going better. In fact, it was the end because it was going better. Sometimes you have to move up "the end" to when things are going well so you can end on a good thing.

Now I can see where there are holes that need mending.


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OnTheBit said...

First let me just say that you are already a carriage driving lady to me because I didn't even understand half of what you said about the harness :P I am so excited that you are learning how to drive and that you are taking your time with Janow...it is better to do something right in twice the time then do it in half the time and spend 4 times as long trying to fix it!

Breathe said...

What an outfit! I imagine it does feel weird from a horse standpoint.

No pun intended.

It sounds pretty complicated, but I'm sure it's going to be fun. Looking forward to your reports. What horse are you practicing with? Did I miss that?

Fantastyk Voyager said...

How awesome! I've always wanted to drive a horse. That's one equine activity I have never done, yet.

Cara said...

I drive a pony named Spunky most times. His picture is in my Nov 21 blog entry. Sometimes a drive a smaller black pony mare named Indie, and once I drove a larger pony mare named Nutmeg. We have been going cross country lately because we have had so much rain and the arena at Roger's is a mess. It takes me about 1 hr 15 min to get out to Roger's barn in Knightsen, CA