Out on the trails today with M on one of her Friesians. Cici has never been out with him before, this was their first date. As we left the barn and went up the trail I noticed she was actively looking about. She was attentive and had her head up and ears were dancing. After about three or four minutes she relaxed and went into following mode. I realized she had been acting like she was out on the trail alone! Lead horse who has to stay alert! Guess it took a little while before she was willing to believe the Friesian knew what he was doing.
We decided to do one of the new trails in the opposite direction from the way we have, and when we came to the trail head saw it was posted with a No Trespassing sign. There wasn't one at the other end, hmmm how interesting. So off the trail we went. Bushwhacking! With the Bulldozer (the Friesian)!
No creature has been through these woods of downed trees and saplings growing up inches from each other. The Bulldozer leads the way and Cici closes her eyes and just walks through anything and everything. She even cuts her own trails when she thinks he is going the wrong way. She doesn't even bother to go around some of the saplings, just walks over them. Well she gets caught. Two saplings conspire to basically trap her left front leg in a V. She can't go forward, she can't back, "Time to get off Mom". She is calm. Not paniced, just stands and waits for me to fix it.
There are more trees right to her left and the saplings are bent that way, only clear side is on the right. Glad I've done all that practicing of mounting and unmounting from both sides as I don't give it a second thought but hop off the right side. I give it a second thought afterwards.
Well these two saplings where really tight up against her chest and armpit. I wrestle the smaller on to the ground and step on it to hold it down. Now I'm trying to figure out how to get the larger one which has a trunk of maybe 1-1/2". Have to bend it away from her and then step on it with my other foot to hold it down. They are both too green to break. And now I ask Cici to walk forward, over the trunks of the saplings. Feels like I'm caught a strange game of Twister LOL!!!!
She calmly walks out of the puzzle and now I am on the ground and we all continue our bushwhacking. The area is so dense there is no room for me to mount back up. We continue clambering over downed trees, thick underbrush and finally connect up with the trail. Mount back up.
I think back to how Cici just stood there. Calm with complete confidence that I would extract her. What a Super Star!
Saturday encore ~ The feral beast escorts me home
21 hours ago