09.02.22: Wakling up a Storm

The snow storm that was in the forecast today pittered itself out about noon, and was replaced by wind and some sun thrown in for good measure. I decided that since the weather was reasonable enough, and it was likely that the arena was still in decent condition I would go get Storm out to spend a little time working with him.

He was standing near the hay feeder when I got out to the pasture, and he stood and looked at me with interest. Piper came over to me first, and I let her sniff and rub on me for a bit as I waited to see what Storm would do. He finally turned and ambled over towards me, but made a last minute decision to head to the water trough instead. I waited with Piper while Storm drank, and then did the obligatory slobbering that always follows a drink.

He finally finished his drink, and ambled over to us, where I was waiting at the gate. I rubbed on him and tossed the rope over his neck and brought his head down to put the halter on. We headed out of the pasture and got started with some walking backwards, and then I turned and allowed him to walk beside me.

I found Anne riding in the arena, and her daughter watching as we came down. I said hello and then Storm and I set out for the hand walking exercise. Storm fell into it pretty quickly, following the pattern of short quick steps. I did not have to correct him too much, except to redirect his focus when he got a bit worried around the back side of the arena. We were quickly making laps of the arena, my steps and his following our path that we hardened into the damp sand. My steps for several laps were actually falling right on top of the steps from the footprints from the prior laps.

We continued for a number of laps, I was getting warm, despite the freezing wind that was slicing through the arena. Storm licked and chewed very well a number of times before I finally decided to quit and head up to the field to see what kind of progress we could make.

As I approached the parking lot, someone got out of a car, and asked where the archery club was, I directed him, and he returned to his car for his bow, and Storm and I made our way into the field. I quickly had to return to walking backwards since Storm became fretful over the wind and open field, as his norm. I figured with the wind as extra pressure we probably wouldn't even be able to attempt the trailer.

We made several loops of the field, weaving through the middle and changing directions while trying to keep his focus and attention. He would sometimes relax and follow right after me in the correct position, other times, he was high headed, and was following me out of line, crab stepping more than he was moving directly in line with me.

Even this work was still keeping me pretty warmed up, so I brought him back in through the gate, and we made our way back to the pasture. Muffin whinnied at him when I brought him around the corner, though he didn't pay much mind to her. I took him back to the hay feeder, and turned him out for the evening.

Next Page:
09.02.26: Still Walking up a Storm
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