What a great ride we had today! Lots and lots of new stuff. He loaded right into the trailer that smelled like dead animal (we hauled our dead steer in it on Sunday). He crossed water twice, pulled a steep bank, crossed the highway with its scary white and yellow lines. My sister, when her colt was green, got stuck in the highway with oncoming traffic because her horse jumped the first line but wouldn't cross the other one to get off the road. Tonka watched it closely, but didn't balk. My sister's two dogs came along and were very obnoxious, which is great training for Tonka. Running around, playing, snarling, running up behind us from both sides, rolling in coyote poop and coming running up behind us from upwind... Tonka was understandably worried at first, but quickly got over it. It was very windy and that didn't phase him at all. We crossed onto a dirt road after riding in the wheat stubblefield for a while. The change of ground was a careful process, but he didn't stop, just needed a good look at it. Then we crossed back and forth from road to stubble through the ditch, but I had a lot more fun just letting him walk out down the road on a loose rein, without any nagging from me to do anything. He got scared when we got to a spot where the raised railroad partially blocked his view and he couldn't see the farm equipment and people on the other side very well, and a big old slow great Pyrenees came over the hill to see who we were. We had to be very careful there, and crossing the railroad tracks (with boards between the rails for trucks to cross) was a nerve wracking process, but we did it! Twice! Stood around and visited, checked out the big tractor and its fertilizer doohickey, both of which had big scary tires. Went back a slightly different way and crossed a wooden bridge and a concrete bridge. He was a bit of a challenge when we passed a lot of horses, he wanted to call and drift their way. I got his attention fairly well, and we crossed the highway again and the water and loaded up in a hurry and came home. Had to meet the kids at the bus.
I know I keep saying this, but I can't help it. I love my horse! He's a gem! And I love the training Todd from Cross Three Quarter Horses put on him. Couldn't ask for better. Unless maybe he took him out in the mountains and stuff. But they're in the desert, not much forested trail there!
Have a great day!