"And, when you want something, the entire Universe conspires in helping you to achieve it." -The Alchemist, by Paulo Coehlo



Friday, November 8, 2013

Trailblazer


This week we averaged 6 miles per ride. Mostly walking. Lily got in some good workouts last week, so I decided it would be just fine to let her have an easy week turtling. I only rode with Kathy and Queenie. Phoebe was out of commission due to a strained back, and Lily had some surprisingly spooky moments on the trails (I'm pretty sure she was in heat-she was being picky about her grain like she always is when in heat as well), which thankfully doesn't affect Queenie at all, so we just took the two girls out to the park across the street Tuesday, Wednesday and today. We discovered three new trails in the park and went exploring. It all kind of looks the same now because most of the trees have fallen.

Here are photos!

Tuesday: 6.49 miles in 2 hrs and 10 min
Average pace: 3.0 mph
Slowest mile: 2.0 mph
Fastest mile: 3.4 mph

One part of the trail where you can actually still kind of see it under the leaves!
The river.

I had seen that trail on the other side of the river the first time we rode to this park and had been DYING to cross and explore ever since then. On this day, Kathy and I had all the time in the world, so we went! I don't know if it's because I channeled all that desire to cross the river to Lily, but I pointed her at the water and she went right across as if she'd done it a million times before! I was SO PROUD of her! This is the mare that wouldn't cross water AT ALL a year ago! She had never crossed this part of the river, and she had never crossed a river this wide.

Do YOU see the trail?? Because I certainly didn't! Lily, however, has become a master at finding trails, even completely unfamiliar and hidden ones like this one. (There really was a trail under the leaves.) She has become quite the trailblazer. It's the greatest feeling to be able to put all of my trust in her and know that she'll get us to where we need to be. Just 3 months ago, I still never thought I'd never see this day with this mare; I had come thisclose to giving up on her. I keep sharing all of these trail photos with you guys because I'm endlessly thrilled with being able to have THIS view from between her ears, to know that she finally trusts me while I'm on her back, and know that I can trust her completely.

More invisible trail. It was there, though. I promise. Look at her happy ears!!
Isn't she the best?

We rode for 30 minutes, following the winding trail that switchbacked over the crest of a hill. We had no clue whatsoever where it would lead to, so eventually we ended up turning around and heading back.

There was a 1.5' bank drop to get to the river's shore from this side. Lily bravely tried it, but we had a disagreement over where would be the best way to tackle it. She ended up stepping on the very edge of the bank which gave way under her hooves. This upset her but I calmly reassured her and let her back slowly away from the bank. She looked at Queenie, and Queenie took over, showing Lily the better route down the bank. Queenie is a pro at the trails, but she usually prefers to follow. Kathy was very proud of her for leading the way when we needed her to!
We headed home after that.  It was a great adventure!




Wednesday: 6.03 miles in 1 hr and 47 min
Average pace: 3.4 mph
Slowest mile: 2.8 mph
Fastest mile: 4.4 mph

Kathy had been wanting to sit in the Alta Escuela for a long, long time, so I gave her her wish. :) 
It seemed to fit Queenie well, and the chestnut mare seemed quite comfortable in it. Kathy used it for the entire ride.


All the orange has turned brown.

Love this arch! I failed at getting a photo the day before.

We went on yet another new trail, following the river most of the way. It dead ends in a private field, where we simply turned around and headed back to the main trail.

We trotted a lot on the way back, Queenie gaiting. 

The skies were beautiful upon our return to the barn.





Friday: 4.7 miles in 1 hr and 30 min
Average pace: 3.1 mph
Slowest mile: 2.8 mph
Fastest mile: 3.3 mph

Flaming red tree that I see on the way to the barn. <3

Another new trail that Kathy and I explored.

Yup, another trail completely covered by the leaves!


 Heading home. It was a much shorter ride; it was much colder! It had been terribly windy at the barn but bearable in the woods. However, towards the end of the ride both Kathy and I were freezing! (The low for tonight is 27 degrees.)
Queenie had been crabby tacking up (arthritis acting up maybe?) so we took it easy on the girls and only walked for this ride. Lily didn't complain. She only asked to trot on inclines, but was happy to walk the rest of the way.















9 comments:

  1. Nice pictures. Looks like a nice trail. A lot more trees than I am used to.

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    Replies
    1. Yes! You have a lot more open space in your neck of the woods. :)

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  2. Bah back east fall pictures!!!!! Also yes I wouldn't be able to find that trail to save my life, good sense Lily!

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    1. Agreed! On foot those trails would have been impossible to find!

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  3. Love! :D You two are going to be a beastly endurance pair! ;)

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  4. I love fall. The leaves make some (most) trails harder to find, yet for some reason I am able to locate more trailheads this time of year than any other. As always, love your pics...I am envious that you have so many cool places to ride!;)

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