I have decided to take my OTTB dressage show horse out on his first trail ride since we’re not doing show outings at the moment. I’ve been wanting to do it for a while but never quite got around to it. But I’m very green when it comes to trail riding off-property.
He has hacked in my hay field and in the woods. He also hacks along the gravel road (until we get to cows because they’re terrifying). I used to board him at a barn that had very beginner friendly trails (only one very minor water crossing) and he seemed to love the days we went out and explored.
I’ve done a few trail rides when I was younger with friends and family and I’m very comfortable riding outside of an arena.
I have an experienced friend going and she will be riding my other horse. He’s a Rocky Mountain Horse who is very experienced with trails (as in traveled around the Midwest to multiple states for trail riding). I purchased him last fall and he’s proven to be very steady, smart, and slow to react. I’m hoping his calm demeanor will give my other guy confidence.
Anyway, I’m planning on just a half-day trip–haul out in the morning, ride for a couple hours, then haul home. I’m so used to making packing lists for shows and overnight stays with stalls that I’m feeling a bit lost as to what I’ll need for a trail ride. Obviously I need tack and grooming supplies, hay, etc., but is there anything you all recommend for trails that I may not think about?
Or anything else I should know before our first adventure? Tips and tricks for a somewhat spooky, inexperienced trail horse?