We competed at the Metamora CDE in August. We had a great time, weather was hot, but sunny and clear most of the time. Alyss and Hawk were well behaved, settled in quickly. They stood well to harness and hitch, despite numerous interesting distractions. Thanks National Drive where we had practiced this in the past!
My trailer packing has improved, things were easily located. Did not get chaotic, messy, as in past years. Yay! Waterproof covers helped, not needing to reload in case of rain or heavy dews at night.
Horses were a bit tired for the CT day, too long of a warmup in high humidity. Helped actually because we did not do a long warmup for CDE Dressage and Cones. They looked lots better Saturday. Hard to judge what they need sometimes, it was the same warmup length we had been doing at home and we figured they would be more “up” than they were.
Husband and I had walked obstacles a number of times, had our routes planned in each one. He had driven the marathon course several times, knew the route. He had worked on it the week before when the torrential rain brought down a number of trees! Also had cleared a lot after winter and spring had done their worst to the trails there.
Marathon day seemed to go by so fast! Up early to get rinse water to vet check, explain to our friend helping us when to put ice in the tubs, how to use wet rags, sponge and scrape when we got there. DD showed up about then, so she and friend would be helping with the cooling time.
We got ready, hitched horses, got on our matching shirts, vests, helmets. Made sure everything was secured, extras tucked in under the seat. Watches ready and off for safety inspection. Then to a big holding area before departing on section A. That was a bit of a roller coaster ride, up and down hill, changing lanes in the woods! Then out for Vet check and over to our tubs for cooling. We all poured water, scraped, then I headed them when we switched to iced water! Pretty much no reaction to the colder water, so we could all work on them.
Passed our Vet check before leaving on the next section. This was longer, weaving on and out of trees, hills, obstacles. They Pair were working nicely together, obedient, the power steering was smooth. The obstacles fowed well for us, in and out of gates, no rubs. Something new to us was the paint line to cross between posts for a gate, without actually going deep into the obstacle. A on the water hazard was like that. We crossed the line in a big curve, I yelled “OUT” as the rear step crossed the line and we went back out over the line heading for B. No wet feet. Did C then around the windmill and INTO the water. Guess the horses were surprised at the water again, but no time to avoid it so they jumped into it together! Splashed forward upon landing, then on thru D and out. The other obstacles were fun, it was like their sides were greased. Never touched anything with a horse or carriage which surprised me. We usually get a small rub now and again. Guess all husband’s summer lessons paid off!
Finished in good time, Vet checked again and told to return in 30 minutes because rates were a bit high in the humidity. Just drove to an unused spigot and started hosing them. I love synthetic harness! Watered and scraped, which is how we had practiced, so horses were glad to stand for it. Drove them back for recheck which surprised the Vet, but she was happy with our numbers, they were totally cooled inside and out. We went to the trailer and unhitched, unharnessed and stalled them. They got big drinks and started eating hay. We put stuff away, got some lunch and fed “our crew” lunch too. It was a good day!
We were scheduled for a lesson with Head Judge at 6P. So it was time to harness and hitch again after we all had rested up. Husband wanted a Dressage lesson so they practiced rein holds, whip use and words encouraging FORWARD. Correcting husband’s posture, which was making him give too much rein. MANY details to improve the “big picture” shown to the Judges. I was on the hill taking pictures! Ha ha
Another lesson Mon AM, with more ideas, tips. Sem appeared to enjoy driving them, did it a lot showing husband horses KNEW what is needed, have to drive them right to get it! Husband thoroughly enjoyed his lessons. Came home with ideas for a longer pole and different wedge seat height. He does not have leaning issue on the marathon carriage seat.
It was a great event for us!!