Friday 28 September 2018


This week I attempted my first real jump with Kachina! It even went really well!

No new photos so you get a bunch of randoms
Pretty girl in her paddock

Quick background:
- to my knowledge Kachina has never been taught to jump at all
- the only jumps I've done with Kachina in the past was one obstacle at a cowboy challenge back in February 2016 (which we didn't really prep for and it was in a western saddle and she knocked it down the first few times so it doesn't really count), and a few flying leaps over muddy creek beds on trail rides (which I would have preferred to walk through calmly)
- in August I started weekly lessons with a hunter/jumper instructor at my barn (SC) to try some cross training. We started with walk poles, trot poles, and raised poles. This was our 4th lesson.

I got a hammock stand this summer, it was a great spot to enjoy the nice weather

Nachosaurus! For my 30th birthday I got the best present ever of this amazing chip holder

After doing some trot poles, which Kachina has really gotten the hang of, SC pointed me to a teeny tiny x-rail with a front placing pole. She first had me bring Kachina up to it to look at it (zero cares) and then had me trot to it with me just looking to the far end of the arena and keeping my hands up. SC suspected that Kachina would just trot over it and that is exactly what happened. We trotted over it twice without me doing anything, and then on the third approach SC had me cluck right before the jump (still trotted over, but cantered after). The next time through SC had me cluck and squeeze with my legs and Kachina jumped it and cantered away. We had a bit of a walk break and went over it twice more without me doing anything (trotted over jump, cantered after). That's where we ended the lesson.

For my Dad's birthday we went for a flight in this open cockpit biplane

It was a super productive first jumping attempt. Kachina stayed calm throughout, and seemed to think her way through the exercise and what her feet were doing. She stayed straight and looked to the jump without rushing it. I was talking with SC at the end and we both agreed that it was pretty cool that Kachina would jump when asked but otherwise would trot the obstacle. Especially for a dressage horse that is a good adaptability where I can either jump small obstacles or use them as cavaletti.

Cat in a grocery bag
Cats passed out to an intense level (only time I've seen the white one sleep like that)

I never want to jump high or as a main focus but I like that learning to jump will give us more freedom to try new adventures. Kachina seemed to enjoy it and jumping isn't as intimidating for me as I expected when my horse tackles it so sensibly. SC and I plan to keep working on things nice and gradually so we never add too much pressure.

We were super lazy with the garden this year but got 11 pounds of potatoes!

Husband turned a bunch of the potatoes into this tasty Shepherd's pie

This is obviously entirely too premature but since I love long-term plans, I have my sights set on a few outdoor events for next September. You fellow bloggers introduced me to the concept of a pace and chase and there is fun pace and chase at the Cochrane Ag facility (my favorite place) that has a beginner division where all obstacles are simple logs and less than 2'. There is also a foxhunting club in Calgary where there is no fox, no hounds, but they organize rides at venues where you can ride through fields and trails and all jumps are optional (so can ride around it if it looks too high or intimidating). I saw social media posts about both for this year and they look like fun events that I think of more as "trail riding at trot or canter with a few obstacles" rather than specific jumping events. I am putting absolutely zero pressure on myself when it comes to jumping, we will only do it if it stays fun for Kachina and I, but it would be pretty cool if we could slowly build up to doing something like that. Prix caprilli dressage classes are an option as well.

I need goals and dream to get me through the winter that is coming
(this was last weekend in central Alberta for a wedding)


  1. That's so cool! I love the long term plans :) We need pics of jompies ASAP :D

    1. I will make sure to set up my camera and tripod for my next lesson!

  2. aw fun!!! and so cool that Kachina was such a pro about it!! cross training is so so useful, and while everybody always loves to tell me how important dressage is for improving jumping, i'm also a HUGE believer that the occasional jump can improve your dressage too. like teaching charlie to jump was a major part of him learning how to rock back on his haunches and be more adjustable and flexible longitudinally. it made so much more sense to him when he had to contend with an obstacle in his path vs when i was just asking him for... something that he didn't understand as we endlessly circled the ring.

    1. Haha yep, I think a lot of dressage riders love to talk about how good dressage is for other disciplines but don't necessarily do the reverse. I loved feeling how much it engaged her back!

  3. Cross training our horses is awesome. Btw I am very jealous of your nachosaurus!