I’ve never done a BlogHop, but this seemed fun. Thank you That Red Mare!
1. Mares or Geldings? Why?
I love mares! I feel like I get along very well with them, and I love my two mares. Although my gelding is pretty cute too… So now I’m having second thoughts. But given two equal horses, I would pick the mare.
2. Green-broke or Fully Broke?
I like green broke because they are cheaper to buy. I would be way more likely to purchase an unbroke youngster than a fully trained adult. I just like the process. But I say that as I already have a trained horse, so whenever I want to just have fun, she’s there. If I only had one green (and possibly difficult horse) I would find that incredibly frustrating, and in fact, this exact situation did happen to me!
3. Would you own a “hotter” breed? (i.e. Arabian, Trakhner, etc.)
A breed known to be hotter, yes, because I think it depends on the individual. Berry, a thoroughbred, is laid back for the most part. I’ve found I really enjoy having a laid back horse, so I will always pick one like that now.
4. What was your “dream horse” going up?
Black thoroughbred with a white blaze and stockings. Basically, Black Beauty.
5. What kind of bit(s) do you use and why?
Vintage uses a french link eggbutt snaffle, because she’s super easy, and seems to like it. Berry uses a d-ring snaffle because she can be a little bit more confused/headstrong, and it seems to keep her under control.
6. Helmets or no helmets?
100% helmets! It feels weird to me to not wear a helmet. The only time I hadn’t is when I took the photos on the top banner… I admit I thought it was such a controlled situation where I was just standing/walking that it wouldn’t matter. Also, Vintage is very good at just standing quietly. Would not try this with a horse I didn’t know, or even with Berry.
7. Favorite horse color?
I still want a black horse, and I admit to being filled with admiring jealousy every time I see someone with one. But I also like bays, which is good since all three of my current are bays (although Vintage is more white/gray now I guess…). The darker the horse, the more I like its color.
8. Least favorite horse color?
This is a hard question for me – I’m not really sure. If I have to pick one, I have to say chestnut, but a very specific color of chestnut, like orange toned with a lighter mane and tail. I think this is because Sonny, a horse I disliked, was this color.
9. Dressage or Jumping?
Before I would have said dressage, but now, always jumping! I need way more jumping in my life!
10. How many years have you been riding?
20+ years, although not always concurrently. Occasionally I would take a year or so off, but it was impossible to bear!
11. Spurs/whip or no spurs/whip?
I don’t use spurs or a whip, and it’s because I am terrible at using them. I would be afraid of jabbing my horse with the spurs, and I’m terrible at holding whips, they usually fall. If I try to use it, I whack the saddle pad. I haven’t needed them with my horses though, they are responsive. I did buy a leather wrapped crop that I thought was pretty fancy, but since I am terrible at things, and my horses seem okay, I haven’t used it at all.
12. Your first fall?
I was maybe like 11 years old, I was riding a horse called Blinky, and she was rushing a jump, so I got scared and pulled back. So she stopped, and I flew off and landed on the jump. The feelings of the betrayal of Blinky that went through my young mind…
13. When was the last time you rode and what did you do?
I rode Berry yesterday, and we worked on simple changes. She was so good (she caught on so quick, she was ready every time) I can only hope this bodes well for flying changes. My trainer says that’s what we’ll be working on next!
14. Most expensive piece of tack you own?
Duett Fidelio dressage saddle, bought for a horse I don’t have anymore. Now it’s just decorative.
15. How old were you when you started riding?
I started taking lessons at six. One day I’ll find the picture of my first ride – I wore polka dot tights because I knew riders wore tight pants. I was pretty proud of myself for looking like such a serious rider, and for being so prepared for my lesson!
16. Leather or Nylon halters?
I love leather ones, but I am cheap, so I get nylon.
17. Leather or synthetic saddles?
I own a wintec jumping saddle, and it’s alright, but I will spring for leather from now on.
18. What “grip” of reins do you like?
I used to be obsessed with rubber reins. I would only ride in them. Now, I will never use rubber reins again because they destroy my hands. I like ones that are rubber laced with stoppers, but I won’t go out of my way to find any. I always uses what matches the bridle.
19. English or western?
English. Zero desire to ride western, but I have a western saddle if I ever change my mind!
20. How many horses do you currently own/lease?
I own two horses and a pony.
21. Do you board your horse? Self-care/full board? home board?
100% at home. It enables me to have more than one, and completely control their situation. Although there are definitely days I wished I boarded so I could take a break from taking care of them.
22. Have you ever had to put down a horse that you loved?
No I haven’t. Clay, my first horse, died of natural causes. It makes me sad thinking about how hard decision of a decision that would be to make.
23. How many saddle pads do you own?
Maybe like 10 total? I’m always wanting more, but I try to restrain myself.
24. Slant-load or straight haul?
Definitely prefer straight load. I will always own straight loads, as I like the idea of being able to stick the horse in there between classes, and I don’t want to pull out other horses to reach the one I want. Plus, they have more room in a straight load, and it doesn’t wear them out their right front and left hind diagonal muscles. I’d rather have them squarely balanced.
25. Why do you ride?
Because of the connection I feel with my horse – it’s incredible that we can have this kind of communication with an animal. Because of the feeling of accomplishment from reaching a goal. The thrill of bringing your horse out to compete, knowing it’s reflection of what you put into it. Because the world seems dull and lifeless without riding. Because it inspires me to be better in other aspects in my life, out of motivation to find ways to keep riding.
I don’t understand how anyone who rides isn’t immediately hooked. What is wrong with them?!