Mares or Geldings? Why?In all my time riding I have been on two geldings and countless mares. There are times when I wish I was on a gelding who just did what I asked in a good natured sort of way and was the exact same every ride, but then I get on my opinionated, highly intelligent, sentient being of a mare and remember why it is that I love mares so much. I want an opinionated partner. I want to learn and grow and build a relationship based on mutual respect. I must be insane.
Green Broke or Fully Broke?
I am a one horse woman and when I get a horse it is for keeps. Given that, while I don't really want a been there done that plod of a horse, with specific goals in mind in a sport I wish to pursue, I need a horse that has some basic experience so that I know they will be a good fit. This wasn't the case with Gem, but back then I didn't have any goals except to enjoy my horse. With my next horse I want to be sure they can perform the tasks that endurance requires both physically and mentally. I don't want to buy a green broke horse with no experience in endurance just to find out they can't handle camping, trails, etc...
Would You Own A Hotter Breed?
I do now although I prefer the Arab crosses to full blooded.
What Was Your Dream Horse Growing Up?
There wasn't any specific breed that I can recall. I just wanted a horse of my own.
What Kind of Bits Do You Use And Why?
Gem has been in a full cheek French link snaffle with a copper lozenge for several years now. She seems to be fine with it. I want to try a baucher on her though. When she went in her leather bridle I used bit keepers that allowed for a more stable bit in her mouth and she really seemed to like that. My bit keepers do not find on my halter/bridle and I think a Baucher would be a nice change for her to give her a similar feel to the full cheek with more stability in her mouth.
Helment or No Helmet?
A helmet. Every ride. All the time.
Favorite Horse Color?
A nice strong bay with obvious black legs, amen and tail. My dream color is a light buckskin with jet black legs, mane and tail.
Least Favorite Horse Color?
Cremello, palomino and overly flea bitten. I owned a mare with white around her eyes and she had cancer that required surgery and chemo treatments. I will never own a horse with pink around the eye again.
Dressage or Jumping?
Jumping is more fun, but only on a horse that will safely do it and enjoys it. Gem is not that horse.
How Many Years Have You Been Riding?
For forever. Let's see....close to 30 in all, but there were large breaks in there for college and medical school.
Spurs/Whip or No Spurs/Whip?
When the occasion calls for it and when used properly, I am not against either.
Your First Fall?
Too long ago to remember. My first fall off Gem was back in Ohio when I first had her. Dusty was riding Pete with us in the indoor and the trainer put the sprinkler on to water the dusty footing. It was one of those old fashioned kinds that spurted and sprayed going clockwise and then rushed back in a steady stream counterclockwise. Dusty rode Pete along the outside wall and he got a little spray on his lower legs without an issue. When I went to go, he decided to cut on the inside of us. Pete then got blasted full force in the chest which freaked even Mr. Unflappable out. Gem was trapped between him and the wall and had no clue what was going on, so she bolted. I landed in the fresh mud.
When Was The Last Time You Rode And What Did You Do?
Last Sunday and we kicked butt at the hunter pace.
Most Expensive Piece of Tack You Own?
Saddle for sure.
How Old Were You When You Started Riding?
I started being ponied by my uncle around the age of 3 and slowly graduated to my own pony then horse and so on.
Leather or Nylon Halters?
Nylon. Gem's halter sits on the pasture gate 24/7 and a leather one would be ridiculous. I also like the fun colors you can get and have an outdoor halter in some indiscriminate color plus her "show" halter which is red and black and monogrammed with her name on it.
Leather or Synthetic Saddles?
This is tricky. For ease of use I like synthetic, but I've never really been able to sink into one and be comfy. For that I really like leather.
What Type of Reins Do You Like?
I hate rubber reins and I really hate the ones with the knobby things on them. How do people ride with those? I like the leather lace reins and have some odd nylon type ones now.
English or Western?
English for sure, but Gemmiepants fits way better in the rigging available with western saddles so we are in a western based endurance saddle at the moment.
How Many Horses Do You Currently Own/Lease?
Technically two since we are married and therefore Pete is also mine, but I rarely do anything with him.
Do You Board Your Horse? Full Board? Self Care? etc.?
Pasture board at probably the best place we have ever boarded. Some day we will get our own farm, but I have been saying that for 15 years now, so who really knows.
Have You Ever Put Down A Horse You Loved?
I find the distinction of "You Loved" here to be really odd. Would it be different if it wasn't a horse you loved? How many people go around putting down horses they do not love? Anyway...to answer the question...no.
How Many Saddle Pads Do You Have?
2 in service (Reinsman tacky too pad and ThinLne endurance pad), plus two AP trail pads that are somewhere in my garage.
Slant-Load or Straight-Load Trailer?
Straight load all the way for two horse. Above that and to save space and not be driving around a semi truck, slant load.
Why Do You Ride?
Riding is the only time in y entire life that my brain just shuts to poop up. Running, spinning, work, driving etc...it is always churning away with lists of thing to do, worries, dreams, hopes, or the fact that I hate running. When I get up on Gem it just shuts off. Everything is quiet and I focus on the ride, the horse under me and enjoying the moment.