Your Plans for This Year's Horse Fun

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What sorts of fun things to do with your horses are going onto your calendar for this year? Now that I can look out my window and see greening-up grass instead of ice and snow, I'm thinking more about hooking up the trailer and going somewhere than about shoveling my way past it.

Here's what I have in mind so far as things to do with Riley, my 4-year-old gelding:

* Local open horse shows. I'm a been-there, done-that gal where breed shows are concerned, and now, instead of taking four days out of my life to go play the horse show game, I'm more interested in going to the kind of Saturday-only shows that leave me time to do something else before chaining myself back up to the computer on Monday mornings.

* Campout trail rides. I'll go to one or two of the organized large-group variety, ones that take place at a nearby private horse camp that's already familiar to Riley. Then, to broaden our horse-camping/trail-riding horizons, I'll be looking for someplace to go that's new and different. I like the state trail rides put on by AQHA affiliates, and haven't been to Montana's ride yet. Could be a possibility.

* Everyday trail riding. We're blessed to have that available to us right out the proverbial back door. Now that Najah's no longer with us, I'll need to be on the lookout for a second saddle horse to make available for my husband or a guest to ride, too. I sure wish there were such a thing as instant cloning of a great one like Najah. He may not have been very big, but as a riding horse, he leaves darn big horseshoes to fill.

My overall goal? To continue enhancing Riley's skills and versatility as a good all-around using horse for a magazine cowgirl. A horse show here, a trail ride there, a few photo shoots in between.

How about you?