|Harley, which way do we go now?|
Rolex had her first meeting with ATV's on the trail today. She was spooked by them, but was a good girl. Surprisingly, they don't really faze Harley. He looks at them, but isn't scared by the noise, and all the drivers have been courteous about slowing down when they see horses.
We headed out to the quarry. Part of the quarry trail is made of soft, sandy footing. It's a great place to let the horses canter up the hill. But with the bitless bridles, Harley thinks the race is on and likes to tear up it, not so willing to slow down. Beware low branches and duck low on his neck! We need to trim some of the canopy! John rode ahead to get a picture of me. Harley began to prance, thinking Roley Girl was leaving with out him. Then I let him go. Here we are rounding the bend:
And then slowing down as we approach Rolex and John (about halfway up the hill). The race wasn't over yet--we still had to get to the top! Can you see that big grin on my face? Yes, we were having a blast!
After having discovered some different trails veering off in new directions, we decided to do a little exploring. One branch we discovered last week, dead-ended on Route 9, a busy east-westbound highway heading to the coast and I-95. But today we took another turn, literally the "road less traveled". A lot of mucky drainage probably keeps most of the ATV riders away. Our new route actually dumped us out on Cheney Woods Rd. From there, we knew to turn right for home--as did Harley. Even though it's a dirt road, it's quite stony. Since he's barefoot, Harley is not keen to walk on rocky, pebbly terrain. So rather than risk a stone bruise, I dismounted and walked him down the road until we reached the next trail junction. The old road bed is blocked by giant boulders, perfect to use for mounting blocks!
We had to dismount again to cross a dicey old corduroy road in a swampy area. From then on, it was smooth sailing. We had our second fun canter up another hill whereupon Rolex just kept going and Harley, sure we should turn for home, reluctantly followed her, ear twitching to the side, pointed towards home. John pulled her up, Harley swung around and showed her the correct route. We got in a little jump over my favorite downed birch, then we walked them back out to the road for a cool down.
Another lovely weekend in the woods on horseback.