Cathryn at That Red Mare recently started a little bloghop of riding questions. I saw it on a couple of horsey WP blogs and decided to hop right in! Ha. Ha. Anyway…
1. Mares or Geldings? Why?
I’m going with geldings until a mare comes along to change my mind. Every horse I’ve leased or ridden consistently has been a gelding so it’s more lack of mare experience than anything else.
2. Green-broke or Fully Broke?
I like the idea of ‘teaching’ horses so I’m going to go green-broke on this. I find kick-on horses a complete chore to ride but a horse that knows its job and enjoys it would definitely be something I’d like. Danny was in between and he was my ideal for a long time.
- you have to admit, he was devilishly cute
3. Would you own a “hotter” breed (ie. Arabian, Trakhener, etc).
Hmm. I don’t mind hotter horses or breeds. I’ve ridden a few arabs and not gotten on well with them, though, so I’m inclined to say no. However, I think every horse is an individual (the first horse I took XC was an Arab and he wasn’t hot at all) so I’ll settle on a big fat maybe.
4. What was your “dream horse” growing up?
Mmm oh boy. When I was really little, a dun stallion (of course). When I leased Danny, I wanted a 17hh dapple grey KWPN gelding with white/pink chromey bits on his nose and legs. And I planned to call him Staccato (was really into piano at the time).
5. What kind of bit(s) do you use and why?
I use the Stubben Easy Control French link loose-ring bit on C. He like it lots. He hated the single joint snaffle D-ring I used on him once so we haven’t gone back. Though he seems to like regular French links too so I may get one in lieu of the $80 Stubben bit for my jump bridle!
6. Helmets or no helmets?
7. Favorite horse color?
Always been bays bathed in chrome. I love big white markings, massive stockings, anything chrome I love because I think pink nose markings are the cutest darn things (so I picked the right pony!).
8. Least favorite horse color?
Cremello probably? I don’t particularly dislike any particular color. Or, I rather dislike the look of appaloosa eye pigmentation, if that counts.
9. Dressage or Jumping?
I appreciate dressage, and if I were better at it, I might like it more. Jumping has always felt more natural to me and it’s honestly what makes my heart beat a little faster. Dressage is crucial but it’s not my passion (though my mother wishes it were).
10. How many years have you been riding?
I would approximate 8, counting out the year I didn’t ride during college and discounting summer camp years. If we count summer camps, then closer to 11.
11. Spurs/whip or no spurs/whip?
Neither when I can help it, haha! C doesn’t usually need assistance in this respect though I did get a crop when we had a little incident during the jump lesson. I didn’t even need to use it, though– I think its mere presence was enough to persuade C!
12. Your first fall?
A pony at the summer riding school called Bartles bolted and I went flying. I think I was in the realm of 10 or 11 when it happened. I only remember because Bartles was my favorite and I felt so betrayed.
13. When was the last time you rode and what did you do?
Monday. We had a dressage lesson and ran through the USEA Beginner Novice tests A & B once each, then worked a bit on geometry before calling it a day.
14. Most expensive piece of tack you own?
I haven’t invested in my own saddle yet, so my dressage bridle is currently winning at $150 ish. I bought most things second-hand so I’ve been pretty economic with my purchases (aside from C’s initial price… haha!).
15. How old were you when you started riding?
I started English summer camps at 8. I didn’t start taking weekly lessons until, oh, 11 or 12? And then rode weekly up through 15, when I started leasing Danny and made the switch to hunters from eventing (4 day lease). I wasn’t riding every day until I leased Charlie, so when I was 17.
- at 13, my first XC run ever, with Azzy, an Arab gelding
16. Leather or Nylon halters?
I have a leather one for C (it came with him) but I’m not opposed to either really, in the right situations.
17. Leather or Synthetic saddles?
Leather. Although the newer Tekna saddles actually look beautiful, pretty authentic, and are very affordable…
18. What “grip” of reins do you like?
Rubber-pimpled or webbed, or both. Something grippy. I have laced reins I used in hunters but I prefer the ‘stickiness’ of rubber reins.
19. English or Western?
I ride English, always have, and probably always will. I respect some Western riders but I doubt I’ll ever be interested in learning the Western disciplines. Besides, eventing is enough to learn already!
20. How many horses do you currently own/lease?
One! Little princess C is my first and (currently) only horse.
21. Do you board your horse? Self-care/full board? Home board?
I full board C.
- C poses in front of pastures at our barn
22. Have you ever had to put down a horse that you loved?
No, fortunately. The hardest thing I’ve done as of yet is acknowledging I was over-horsed and dropping a lease on a horse I loved.
23. How many saddlepads do you have?
Only two, actually. But I have two more on the way and plan on purchasing a heinously pink one in the near future.
24. Slant-load trailer or straight haul?
Either or, C does both like a pro.
25. Why do you ride?
For the challenge, the adrenaline, and the relationship with a horse. Also because I tend to pick sports up naturally, and riding is one sport I’ve had to work really, really hard to get even decent at (am I even there yet? Hm.). But honestly, mostly for the horses. There’s something about pressing your face into a warm neck at the end of a rough day that’s sincerely comforting. Riding erases my stress.