About a mile in, I scratched the entire distance plan and settled for trying to find the pony's brain. Canter sets don't mesh well with a pony that's behind my leg and looking for things to spook at.
About two miles in, we met a tree.
Let me highlight the tree:
The tree was obviously terrifying. Confetti was reluctant to move forwards. Two steps forward, five back, three steps forward, pause to contemplate. Naturally this section is effectively a singletrack with the erosion, so hopping off to longe or working in circles was not an option. Forwards, back, forwards, spin with her front end off the trail, forwards, back all the way to the foot-tall log across the trail, and back over that for good measure.
I wish I could say I won the battle. Sadly, twenty minutes later a pair of hikers showed up coming towards us. Since they did not get eaten Fetti deemed it allowable to walk nervously past them and the tree.
Human: mentally exhausted.
Horse: still picking fights with too much energy.
We briskly made our way up to the top, where we found a car and a bunch of folks with chainsaws. Fetti decided this was totally fine, and looked hard when they dropped a tree. That was it. Crazy stuff with trees? Whatever. Fallen, already cut tree? OMG GOING TO DIE.
|I limited my chainsaw photos due to residual anxiety that she'd lose it. Next week: better photos.|
I jogged a bunch of the downhills on the way home.
She wasn't convinced she really totally had to come with me, but once I snapped some photos she was willing enough. Hooray for pony jogging partners.
Since I'm so late in posting this, I actually do have a followup! We went back this weekend and did battle again, but the battle was relatively minor and I was pleased. The following day we went with friends and.. the lead horse also objected to the tree. Thus the pony earned some points back, since it clearly wasn't all in her head.
Hopefully we'll have more interesting things to post on soon! If the sunshine holds, my riding mojo has returned, and we're back out and at it again.