Look who got to go on a trail ride!
Sunday afternoon, following a 20-miler on Consolation, I hauled Acey across the Snake River for a ride up the Big Hill. Her bare feet don’t handle the gravel road very well, and I’m still holding out for the Glove Wides to be released, so we needed some good footing on which to start getting her in shape. I figured that pointing her up a long slope on a hot day was the safest way to start out, particularly as we were riding alone and she hasn’t seen many miles under saddle yet this year.
…and she handled it beautifully, beating Consolation’s first-climb-up-this-hill time by a good 5 minutes. We went a total of 7 miles, mostly at a walk, which was nevertheless a pleasure because Acey really cruises along. According to Garmin, her preferred walk is a good 4-7 minutes per mile faster than Consolation’s. (Yeesh.) I’d forgotten how good Acey is downhill, in particular. She positively glides; I’ve never felt anything quite like it.
We had just one medium spook and very little drama, though I can see I’m going to need a lot of tools in the toolbox for dealing with her enthusiasm. Tiny she may be, but Acey has a whole lot of “go” — and as she gains confidence, I’m betting she’ll fight to use it. I can already imagine her at the start of an endurance ride, when emotions are high… Yeah. Lots of ring work is in order.