Sponging while on the horse: non-issue. I'd never really tried this before, since most of my rides haven't had enough river crossings for it to come up. Per usual, she acted as if we'd been doing this forever. This horse spoils me.
Electrolytes via DelyteBytes cookies: success in that she ate them and ate/drank well. It's hard to say how much of a difference the cookies made. I planned to give her approximately one every hour or whenever I thought of it, packed 10-12 cookies in a bag for the trail, went through 9 of them. We'll do the same thing at our next ride.
Race brain never kicked in (see: we had a buddy!) and she treated the whole ride like a conditioning ride, complete with asking to quit when her heart rate hit 150. I am happy to see that she is capable of keeping her brain and not running herself to death.
|Good fallen log mounting block, photo by Cyd|
|what are my elbows doing?! photo by Boots n Bloomers, used with purchase|
Trailering: she wasn't bad, but she wasn't perfect. I've never had an issue loading her before and it took a couple minutes for all three loads. I finally pulled out the dressage whip when we were loading up at camp to head home. Two light taps 'no really I'm serious' and she went in. It's not a fear issue, it's a 'not sure I want to' reaction. In fairness, we haven't been trailering out from home much over the past year, and the last time we trailered was in June up to Wild West... another long haul in both directions. My plan is to bring the dressage whip with me the next time I'm loading her, and escalate promptly to that rather than trying to coddle and convince her into the trailer.
|swooshy tail. photo by Boots n Bloomers, used with purchase|
Migraines: I did not have a migraine. This ride was mostly in the trees - enough such that the new visor was plenty of shade even without my forever-worn sunglasses! - and I am confident that was a huge factor. No migraine day before, no migraine post-ride, no migraine day after.
Hour holds go by fast. I can see where having crew would be useful! A few minutes to pull tack and sponge sweat, a few minutes to let her eat, find spare boot & apply to hoof (thankfully the boot was pre-adjusted for the RF, which was normally the larger and more finicky foot, so it was Good Enough to go on the LF without fiddling at cables), vet in, switch out Camelbak bladders, braid my hair quick, grab food for me, realize I have 20 minutes left and should start tacking up, fight with electrodes and gel, run to portapotty, throw last of tack on, jog over to out-timer to find Cyd, who was starting to wonder if I'd left already (3-4 min past my out time). Oops.
Lots to work on, but nothing spectacularly awful, and generally all workable issues!