Friday, April 30, 2010


Jasper on the right when he lifted his head up from dead horse sleep.

Jasper lives at the house in a pasture with another OTTB named Robbie. It is really his first ever friend, because they were both the lowest of the low in the pecking order until they were with each other. Even though Robbie has decided he's the boss, he doesn't really bite Jasper or remove huge chunks of hair. (Thank you Robbie). They are inseparable in their paddock and eat, sleep, and graze together. You can tell them apart because Robbie naps with his head and neck up while Jasper sleeps flat out and looks like a dead horse.

Jasper in one of the turn out pens, arena in background.

In the mornings Jasper gets loaded up in the horse trailer and trailered about 10 minutes to the barn. There, he has to be in a stall which caused a lot of stress and whinnying at first, but is starting to get quieter. I think he's exhausted at the end of the day because he never lays down and is not used to standing up all that time. He's being a good boy so far. I'm working on posting the trot with a 'purpose' and being able to rate the trot just by slowing or speeding up posting. He already was pretty good at this before we came, but now I'm purposefully posting all the time not just when I want him to slow down or speed up. Apparently I ride like I'm always trying to stay out of the horse's way, which makes sense if you look at a lot of the horses I've ridden in the past. We're also working on canter transitions. We're really powering up the trot, almost to the brink of canter, then giving a very obvious scooping cue to pick up the canter. He's really "getting" the cue, but not always the correct lead.

Yelm is in the center of most things eventing. Aspen Farms is right down the road, and Northwest Equestrain Center isn't much further.

Josh (assistant trainer & eventer) takes stadium lessons on Merlin at Caber, about an hour away.

Everything is very close, especially compared to Spokane. I just wish Jasper was ready for a BN level horse trail to be able to take advantage of everything here... but good news. There is a big 4-day clinic going on at Aspen this weekend, and it turns out that they have space on Sunday morning at 8am for a Beginning-Beginning Novice X-country lesson with Steuart Pittman. Not only that, but my friend Terri is bringing her horse Jed up on Sat. to stay overnight at our barn so she can ride in a clinic as well. I'm hoping I can talk someone there into videoing or taking a few pictures.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Jasper's not gonna know what hit him...

Jessica and Cardi at the jog in LA at the Festival of the Horse.

We head to Yelm tomorrow to train with Jessica Wisdom for 2 months. And by train I mean work. Jasper, my 3 birds and I are being picked up around 9 in the morning to make the trip to the wrong side of the mountains. Poor little guy has no idea. Every time I go to the barn he's doing dead horse. Although he completely blew a gasket today when his 20-something-something neighbor got taken out for a trail ride. The world as he knew it was coming to an end. Well, buddy...

The dressage shows in Los Angeles and Sacramento went well. Cardi the PSG & I1 Welsh pony was a star and the two 4-year-olds were very well behaved. It was a long time to be on the road and I don't know if I'm exactly cut out to be a show groom, but well worth the experience and I'm glad I went. Jessica is a true professional. Honestly the highlights of the whole thing were Cardi's musical freestyles. If Jessica posts one I'll link it. He won at the I1 level in Sacramento with a score in the high 60's. Oh, and the sushi place we went to in Sacramento was worth the trip. AMAZING sushi. I think I'd fly to Sac just to go back there.

Day one was a 12 hour drive. We followed Kari and Rick all the way to LA. Here we go by Mt. Shasta.

LA with 6-horse trailers? Egads.

Day two was about 10.5 hours. Finally made it.

Cardi the super pony.

The very handsome 4-year-old stallion Diamond.

4-year-old Rio warming up for her test.

Puh-leeeeeeeeeeaaaaase can I have a taste of your camera? I won't hurt it I pwomise...

Guenter Seidel and U2

Rick and Kari and their tiny little horses after a trail ride hack.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Festival of the Horse

Los Angeles Equestrian Center

Cardi & Jessica, extended trot.
Pony Power.

more later... :)