Horses, Life, A Touch of Geek

Showing in the Sun

On a hot summer day, let’s take it as read that activities requiring long pants are inherently ridiculous. The only sensible way to ride in the heat is to put on a pair of shorts, hop on bareback, and head to the creek. That said, I went by what I hope to be my new lesson barn [Random], Stepping Stone Farm, to check out their end-of-camp show last weekend.

How to Run a Show in the Sun

My first blue, beginner walk/trot at a camp show.

Recognize the evil necessity of camp. A deluxe training barn might charge enough to forgo the rugrat brigade. However, most farms of any discipline need the clients, whether it is summer-only or part of a program. I knew a barn in another state that brought kids in as up-downers and took them through to the Pony Finals. Two other barns in my area – one hunter, one hunter/jumper – had shows the same day.

Schedule low-key classes. Walk. Walk/Trot. Leadline Walk. Leadline Walk/Trot. You get the idea.

Motivate the judge. The classes flew. I don’t think the walk/trot/canter classes made it four times around a medium-sized ring. The announcer had trouble keeping up with the speed of the ring steward’s signals. I’ve ridden in hunter flat classes that I wished moved so fast.

Have the right horses. The Saddebreds shed heat like the tall, thin endomorphs they are. I’ve seen hunter/jumper shows in less heat where horses and riders looked more miserable. Rodney looks worse standing out in the field all by his big, fat self.

Yes, there are nits I could pick – starting with slapping helmets on all of the adults – but I hope to ride there. I’d rather not get thrown out before I even start. Everyone was friendly and the horses looked healthy & happy. That goes a long way.

Did you camp?

Comments on: "Showing in the Sun" (5)

  1. When I read your posts It makes me want to take a ride on a horse sometime. I can feel the love you have for them. I think maybe in the fall I will see if I can do that. I think they are so majestic. I am in my mid-life and when I read your blog title it always makes me smile. Happy 4th!

    • Thank you. I guess I love ’em. On a day-to-day basis, mostly I feel the frustration. Where do you live? I might know a barn. (Or use the blog email –>.)

  2. You, of course, will wear a helmet.

    • Fear not. I’ve already been thru the mocking gauntlet when the new mushroom-headed ASTM helmets came out. My hunter trainer was not amused. TS lady.

  3. debandtoby said:

    congrats on your first blue in your new discipline. how does it feel? your center of balance has got to be different. i rarely showed but i would have appreciated some classes going faster, lol.

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