Monday, 30 July 2012


So several things have been going on the past few weeks, not including getting a new trailer and going to our first horse trial (oh, the adventures)!  Since I spoke a little bit about the trailer before, I’ll gloss over that for now and focus on this past weekend.

Trailering down was fine, Koda was very relaxed in the new trailer.  We trailered him loose so that he could move around as he saw fit to be the most comfortable for such a long haul, and kept the divider secured to the wall so essentially he was travelling in a small box stall.  We stopped every few hours to check on him, give some water and hay, fuel up, and switch drivers.  After the 10 hour drive, we arrived at the show (yes, 10 hours… and that’s one of the closer ones!).  During the drive we were texting back and forth with an acquaintance of mine who we were staying with (got to love friends with RVs!), and she let us know that the parking was atrocious.  They had gotten stuck twice by parking where they were directed even after protesting that would not be a good idea. 

We arrive and there was no one really around to let us know where to park, which stall was ours, there were no signs, nothing.  Luckily, our friend joined us and showed us where to set up with Koda and park the trailer (sadly, on the other side of the grounds…).  I’m still fairly new to the show thing, this being only my second season, so I spent the evening going over details, prepping my dressage test, cleaning tack, etc.  The next day came and I got to have a bit of a sleep in since my dressage time was in the afternoon and stadium was around 4pm.  The moment I finished braiding, Koda dropped down and rolled, the little turkey!  I had not brought a slinky with me, but was able to borrow one from someone.  After this, I tried to relax in the trailer… tried.  I wasn’t really worried about our dressage, it was a simple walk-trot test where the most difficult thing we did was a 20m trot circle.  I was extremely nervous about stadium since Koda has not had as much exposure to it, particularly any decorative jumps or standards. 

Then the heavens opened.

Accompanied by thunder and lightening.

And then it started to hail.

Our stalls were completely open pens with no shelter for the horses, so I tossed Koda onto the trailer.  Of course, now my test was postponed, but it wasn’t actually announced, or if it was, we didn’t hear it.  So now we’re all chillin’ in the RV, everyone else is fine, I’m freaking out since I have no idea what’s going on, if the tests have started up again or not, etc.  While we were in the RV, we watched three truck and trailers get stuck while trying to get out of the already slick paddock in the pouring rain.  Eventually they got out with the help of the bob cat and gravel, leaving huge ruts in their wake.  Why they were heading out in the middle of the storm, I don’t know… not exactly the smartest choice, but to each their own. 

Once the rain stopped, I grabbed Koda off the trailer, tacked up, and headed over to warm-up to see what was what.  Apparently they were just going when people were ready, so was told to warm-up and away you go!  We had an ok warm-up, but the field was still very slick and there was standing water or deep mud wherever you went to ride.  At this point I was happy our test was only walk-trot!  We went into our test, and it went alright for my greenie and me.  Biggest comments were needed more submission from Koda, but overall a very steady and consistent test scoring 6s across the board.  Not sure how that translates to US scores, sorry!  One thing that kind of was off for this test was I was in such a rush and panic that I didn't take the time to realize/check that my stirrups were at jumping height and not dressage height!  Here are some shots from our test, you can tell that he relaxes slightly into it as the test goes on.

This is Koda, the giraffe...

Note the mud spatter on the boards.  We were riding through a puddle!

Follow the circle in the grass, and you'll be alright.

That's a little better bud!  Relax!

Riding by the "judge's tent"

Almost there...

Good boy!

Stay tuned for day 2!


  1. That sounds and looks miserable. Nothing like a grass arena on a wet day to make dressage even harder. Good for both of you for sticking it out!

  2. Sounds like you made some good decisions. Hope it all turned out well.