So! I am so late posting this… but-Young Riders camp happened this year!! it was a pretty last minute decision that Tanta would be able to go, and I was so busy frantically packing that I didn’t have time to do an update on here. but basically, it was the BEST. SO FUN!
It seemed that Tanta was getting bothered by her boots… as long as I rode her in polo wraps she was happy and sound. this was, obviously, a huge relief. and at that point there really wasn’t any reason not to go to YR’s! Maren and a friend were planning on going, so, for the first time ever, we had 3 horses in our 3 horse trailer!
I was worried about finding XC boots that wouldn’t rub Tanta… as I already said, the decision to attend camp was so last minute, I didn’t have time to order in any sort of soft cross country boot to try on her. I ended up just trying what I could find. nothing was working and I was concerned she would have to go bootless on her fronts. Tanta doesn’t really interfere, nor is she particularly clumsy, but I feel better knowing she has some amount of protection on her legs. As a last resort I tried some old fashioned (not sure what they are actually called, do they have a name?) jumping boots, and they didn’t run her!!! I don’t know why, but I’ll take it. My coach kindly let me borrow them for the show, and it just so happened that some friends had a couple pairs of the same style of boots they didn’t need, and gave them to me! which was super nice and very helpful as I dont think they make that style of boot anymore! So basically, if I ever see any boots of that style at a used tack store or whatever, I’ll buy them so I have a stock😉
Back to the camp. we left Thursday morning, fairly early as it takes 6+ hours of traveling to get there. all the horses traveled really well! When we finally arrived it was HOT. SO HOT. I felt like I stepped out of the truck into an oven. we walked the ponies around and let them graze in the shade, so we didn’t melt. the stabling there is my favourite of all the show venues, because the pens/stalls are larger and fairly spread out. They are mostly in the trees, and are arranged in clumps of about 4-6. So it’s sort of separate and nice… there’s a road/driveway that separates the stabling from a big field. Last time we were there people camped on the big field. This year hay was planted on the field, so the organizers had asked everyone to camp beside the stalls. I should have taken a picture but I didn’t. it was fairly squishy, but I loved being so close to the horses. and I mean squishy trying not to have our camp spill onto the road or into the stalls, not squishy with other people. it was actually really nice in that people weren’t camping on top of each other!
There was a rider meeting at 7, to go over rules and whatnot. out group opted to wait and ride after that, in hopes it would be cooler by then. it was, but at that point we were a bit unmotivated lol. we did ride though, and that was good. I didn’t want to tire Tanta out before our lessons, so I just walked and trotted around a couple times and went for a little light seat canter. we were riding on grass, in one of the XC fields, so Tanta was nice and forward. it was fun:)
Friday I had a cross country lesson. My ride time was 9:30 which was pretty nice. We were done before the heat of the day. My group started in the arena, so our instructor could get a good idea of where us and our horses were at before we went out into the XC fields! We did a little flatwork and jumped a few small fences then we were ready for XC. Tanta was a bit sluggish in the arena… but she perked right up as soon as we went onto the grass! The facility is super nice – it has a massive cross country course with lots of different obstacles – ditches, water, all sorts of jumps, hills etc. The first day we schooled logs, the up/down bank, little houses, and finished up be doing the bank up out of the water. Not really that much to report, because Tanta was perfect! (As per usual😉)
Day 2 was super fun- we started out in the arena, but hardly spent any time in there. We started with a mini course, and then schooled lots of other stuff. As I am writing this I’m forgetting what happened when, so my descriptions are a little vague. Sorry😐 in my Defense there have been a lot of XC courses in the last couple weeks. NOT complaining!
we did do a super fun little house coming out of the water:
It was so fun!!! I wish I could post videos, but my blog plan only allows pictures. On the second day we also had a dressage lesson. Let’s just say that Tanta was TIRED. So tired. They were running the lessons in groups of two, and the other horse in my lesson was tender footed on the arena footing. So basically with the foot sore horse and the super tired horse, I’m pretty sure we had the shortest group dressage lesson ever. Lol! Oh well.
The third day we had another cross country lesson, and of course Tanta didn’t feel tired at all. We did some little courses, ditches and then some small logs at the top of some fairly steep hills. We came up first, then went down. Those were really fun.
After those our lesson wrapped up. We still had pace though, so we couldn’t leave quite yet. For pace there’s a track running around the outside of a big field, and they time you cantering around and average your speed. We were aiming for 350 meters per minute, as that is the time for Pre-Entry. By this point, poor Tanta was SO tired. We kept breaking to trot… so our averaged speed wasn’t really very accurate. We went something like 337 or something. So the instructor said that when we were cantering, it was probably a bit too fast, because our average was almost 350 and we had trotted so much. We went again and were closer to the time with not as much trotting. It… was good to get to feel what that canter was like… except I didn’t really get to, because we were so inconsistent… haha so pace was sort of a bust but oh well.
We let the horses hang out and have some water, then we hit the road! Altogether it was SUCH a fun weekend, with lots of great schooling, and Tanta was the best (like she always is!)