Having recently pulled a muscle in my leg, I decided to introduce Hannah to VV endurance with a really "easy" ride. Well, at least in terms of speed. We went out and walked for almost two and a half hours because I couldn't handle anything faster without causing more damage to the already sore spot. We took out three of the youngsters (5 to 6 year olds) out for a quiet training ride in the countryside and then eventually the desert.
We started out checking out one of the canalside trails only to find that the dreaded dredge had been working along the canal and there were massive horse-eating piles of water hyacinth along the trail. Even I had to admit that the crunch, crunch, pop, pop of the air pods underfoot was rather disconcerting. We opted to head for desert because the ponies were finding the entire experience rather stressful and a training ride for trail riding hack ponies needs to let them get used to CALMLY moving along. The desert has its own stresses for youngters since it is basically the world's largest arena. The huge empty spaces of the Sahara tend to inspire them with the urge to race around like lunatics. A new challenge.
The desert portion of the trip went smoothly with only some rather energetic jigging on the part of Wadi who was accompanying his buddies in the hands of one of my grooms. Figgy, being the oldest of the youngsters, was very good. His special monster is the diesel water pump next to a canal, so the desert made him very happy. At the end of the ride, as my muscle was beginning to suggest it had been riding quite long enough already, so we looked for the trail through the mango orchard. Unfortunately halfway through the plantation, I realised that the friendly owner of our neighbourhood mango grove had closed off the exit with barbed wire, so we had to take a slight detour. On arrival, both the young geldings pulsed in at 48 bpm while our filly slid in at 29! If she keeps that up, we have an interesting endurance prospect there in a couple of years.
Gimps and Newbies.kmz