Sunday, March 12, 2023

You Can Take A Horse To Water .....

 Well well well ..... spring finally showed up in Arizona, if only for a week.  Warmer temperatures and sunshine mean it's BATH time in the desert.  I love that this guy hangs out here, singing to me every morning at 5:30 before the sun even comes up.  An hour later, he's waiting at the feed station for breakfast.

Spring is also evidenced by the Oreo selection at the grocery store.  Though I totally prefer CARAMEL Oreos, this will do in a pinch.  One of two of these for dessert is much better than that huge slab of cake I would down if these were not available.

It being a rather nice day, the horse show scheduled at the fairgrounds was in full swing.  SO much stuff goes on at this fairgrounds ... an RV show, dressage classes, jumping classes and even barrel racing, not to mention the shooting range next door was in full swing.  

This is Laila, the Chance granddaughter on her horse Max.  He's had some leg swelling problems for the last few weeks and is the reason Laila missed the rodeo.  They had only one chance to get him to the vet.  Horses are cheap to keep ... said no one EVER!!   This is her first time back in the dressage event.  The hardest part is remembering the pattern you have to ride.  They both did great.

Here's the thing about horse shows.  You ride ... then you wait ... sometimes for a couple of hours.  With 39 horses signed up for the Novice Jumping Class, you have to wait your turn.  Luckily I took my camera and kept busy capturing these guys flying over the jumps .... more or less.

You can take a horse to water, but you can't make him drink ... nor can you make him jump that big scary obstacle if they don't want to.  This guy put on the brakes, and believe me, there is nothing you can do but hang on for dear life, OR go flying off over their head.

Too late ... the horse stopped in mid air, then made an attempt, which sent the gal into the air.  The horse knocked over the poles, jumped over the lady and went screaming off to the other end of the arena.  I'M FREE ... I'M FREE!!!!  He took off like a shot to the entry gate with a 2' tall "sort-of" fence which I thought he was going to jump.  He finally stopped when the people at the end raised their arms.

Everyone was fine except the poor lady's ego.  How embarrassing ... but it happens, more times than you would think.  

Some times horses just love this activity ... sometimes they don't feel good, or maybe they are sore from all the practice.  Their ears tell the story ... watch their ears.  Forward usually equals happy horse.  Pointing back at you ... not so much ... you better watch your p's and q's.

As with Dressage, you have to know the pattern.  The jumps must be completed in a particular order.  This being a novice class, they don't have that much experience.  There was lots of knees bumping into poles, but for the most part, they all did very well.

Max went over the ten jumps with no refusals.  Three refusals (and/or falling off) and you are disqualified.  Time is also important ... you have to complete this course in 82 seconds or less, with no faults (knocking poles down).  The fastest time with no faults WINS!!

If you look at this picture closely, you can see he almost hit the pole ... his hoof barely misses it, but miss it he did, making for a great round.  

I didn't wait around for the last of the 39 entries to show.  It was late in the day and I knew Cooper would be waiting with crossed legs.  

It's Sunday ... a day of rest ... which I will spent resting on the Chance couch while we watch more episodes of 1923.  Break out the popcorn!!!!


  1. Just looking at those pictures reminded me of all the muscles I pulled when the horse zigged when I was expecting him to zag!

  2. Wonder how Laila and Max did? Excellent pictures on a nice warm afternoon. I believe the warm weather is here to stay.

    1. They are a little slow on the scoring announcements. She just learned she was 5th last year.

  3. I love chocolate and peanut butter together, bet those Oreos are awesome! Love the pictures today. Laila and her horse, I love that picture!

  4. I always enjoy your blog and pictures! Keep up the good work.