Thursday, March 15, 2012

Gizmo's First Beach Trip

Took Gizmo to the beach today not knowing what to expect. In the past, it has taken me a liitle while to get him off of adrenaline at new places, but then seems to settle down. It wasn't like that today. When I hand walked him over the levee to the beach he did his little snorts every time he took a breath. I was wondering what in the heck he was thinking. We stopped and let him take it all in on the way to the surf, and at the surf, took our time checking it out. It only took about 5 minutes for him to walk in. His curiosity is almost in the extreme catagory even if he is scared. When the white wave would roll in, he'd back up, then go in again. We never went deeper than his mid shin. I ended up taking off my boots, but my jeans, which were rolled up, got wet way up to my mid thigh. Everything went great with that so we saddled up. That was a different ball game. I couldn't get him in the water after that until we came across Gary Boquet, a trainer in my area, and I asked him to go in the surf before me to see if Gizmo would follow in. He did! I have never felt quickness in Giz like i did when he tried to get away from the waves coming in. But, he was right back in there waiting for the next wave to move away from that one. It was awesome. Felt like I was on a cutting horse! After the trainer left, it was back to being a chicken. I never pushed the issue. I'll just bring him back and build on what we accomplished.
As far as the rest of the ride, he was very extroverted. If I would have let him, he would have galloped off into the sunset. Never went there. I used partial disengagement to keep him at a walk or trot. Also tried steady rein, but that was ineffective today. After a while, his head came down and we were our old selves again. Every now and then, he would feel like speeding up, but it wasn't bad. He cracks me up in the way he has such a short attention span. After settling down and being the good little horse, he seemed to all of a sudden say, 'this is boring now, think i'll cut up a bit and make this ride more interesting'. He would pick on the other two horses on the ride. Then speed up, and slow down. I'd take him in circles trotting around everyone to occupy him and when things were going good for me, he'd start acting like a 3 year old child again. He is so funny! Every new thing we would come across, like a beach umbrella, a lounge chair, a beach tent, etc. he would have to go check it out. It was like the item had a magnet on his nose. I'm chalking that up as a good quality to have, especially a trail horse, which is what I do most of. I just let him smell, then we were off again. Had a really fun day, and I hope to go back soon. We probably logged in 7 or 8 miles.

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