For the last month or so, I’ve been working from home two days a week. The main advantage of this arrangement is that I can work more efficiently because I’m not answering questions from coworkers about consignment saddles or visiting with friends who stop by the store. The other big plus? I can take mid-week trail ride.
Allie over at Rocking E Cowgirl and I have been trying to meet up for a trail ride for ages, and we finally made it happen on Tuesday! My neighbor/former barn owner, one of her students, and another friend met Allie and her pal Kara at Lake Carl Blackwell. Lake Carl Blackwell is an enormous recreation area owned and operated by Oklahoma State University; it includes a 3300+ acre lake and 800+ acres of land. There are over 50 miles of equestrian trails!
I opted to take Gina. She’s always a good choice for riding at a new place- she handles all sorts of terrain, crosses water, and can be relied upon to not freak out.
We headed out on the trails without any real plan. I’d somehow forgotten this was Allie’s first real live trail ride, so instead of coming to the ride with a map in hand and a route planned, I told her, “We’ll just wing it!” (Come visit me, folks! It’ll be fun!)
The trail we followed started out fairly wide and level, winding through the blackjack and post oaks common to the prairie. It turned steep and rocky; downed tree limbs added to the tricky footing. Gina was a total star throughout the ride. When my friend’s young horse decided rocks were scary or trees were alarming, Gina calmly marched past him and took the lead.
My only regret was that I didn’t get to chat with Allie through the ride! Her sweet horses Hot Rod and Kona were perfectly well-behaved and pleasant, and decidedly not in a hurry. Gina’s trail riding philosophy is the faster she walks, she sooner she’s finished!
When we eventually made it back to the trailhead, I had a chance to talk to Allie. She’s absolutely delightful, and so are her horses (and her friend Kara). I’m so glad we were able to meet up and ride- I hope we’ll get to do it again soon!