Saturday, January 8, 2011

Bring on the White Stuff!

When you live in Canada, there are things to do all year around. Canada is a very "active" place to be. We embrace the different seasons and if you are up for it, you can be busy all the time. You name the sport and you can probably do it in Canada. Me.....I am not an "active" person....unless you call socializing an activity. :-) For years and years, I looked at winter from inside my house or office or restaurant/pub. Cold and snow were not for me. I did not participate in any of the outdoor sports available locally (skiing, skating, hiking, tobogganing, snow shoeing). Brrr!

Our winter so far has been cold and damp. Actually, it hasn't even been that cold lately; probably around the -4 degrees Celsius (25F) mark most days. We have had about 20 cm (8 inches) of snow since the end of November. The problem is we've also had rain and thawing temperatures. This mixture is not great for trail riding. The mud from the thaws has frozen into big bumps and clumps making it a bit treacherous to walk on. The thaws have also produced a lovely hard layer of ice lurking just under the innocent looking layer of snow. A rider went out on his Arabian weekend before last and both went down while trotting out on the trails. His horse hit an icy patch that was camouflaged. Fortunately, neither were hurt.

We have 3 new horses at the barn who are to be trained over the next couple of months to get ready for the upcoming reining season. This has shaken up the turnout situation a bit. Normally Gem would be put out in his regular field with a couple of other horses who have had their shoes pulled because the competition season is over. Now Gem is turned out in the front paddock with DH. They run around after each other and have a grand time.....and yes, they have already challenged the wooden fence around the paddock. :-) However, for a couple of weeks, Gem was not able to be turned out with DH because of the ice and frozen mud situation in the paddock and he and DH were relegated to separate round pens. Two horses running around like lunatics on ice and uneven footing in the paddock might not be a good thing . LA was being cautious and I appreciate that. The icy conditions have meant that the arena is quite crowded because going out on the trails is not really an option.

Well, it started last night....and is still coming down. Snow! Finally! I know some of you are sending frowns my way and probably even cursing me. :-) But, I am hoping that we get enough that it provides a good base and that trail riding can become part of my winter riding experience again. I want to be outside! What the heck??? Did I just say that??

This is what it looked like at 8:30 a.m. this morning looking out to the field from our deck:

Now, if you believe the 7-day forecast, we are to have flurries on and off for the next week. Yay!!! Oops - did I just say that??? People who really know me might think that I have been partaking in vodka soda for breakfast if I told them I was wishing for snow, but I am......wishing for snow that is, not drinking vodka soda for breakfast. :-) I am hoping that I can get out on the trails soon. "Who would have thunk it?" as my father says.....looks like riding has made me an "active" person. I know some of you have been suffering with way too much of the white stuff. Sorry! Perhaps the weather has shifted and we are going to get what some of you have. I hope so!!!! Did I just say that??.....

What was I thinking....?


  1. Blah! Were the same here, rough frozen mud with snow over top. You are brave to go trail riding in the fluffy stuff! I worry to much about slipping (or my horse slipping) Im a chicken! Have fun :)

  2. Well I hope you get your snow. We got 10 inches yesterday and are in for more tonight. I'll wish it up to you!

  3. JPS -Just walking and plowing through the snow is fine with me and is a great workout for my guy. It's so beautiful and pristine when you are walking about.

    GHM - LOL! Send it my way!!

  4. Yes! Bring it on!
    (marvellous how horses give you a different perspective on things)

  5. Ugh...feeling kinda guilty for complaining about the weather down here! So I will EMBRACE the upcoming snow that's heading our way and know that it means a good snow pack and hopefully low fire season in the mountains. :)

  6. I LOVE snow! We don't have horses, but the dogs and I were at the dog park for a couple hours today. Ever see a greyhound running and sliding on ice? Scary!

    I'm wishing you snow!

  7. You know, I was just thinking that today. Coriander slid around on some hidden ice and I thought that a couple more inches of snow would take care of that problem. Fingers crossed you get to do some trail riding soon!

  8. yeah, i have been braving the cold a bunch this winter to ride Bodhi. The cold temps (between -10 and -30 C) have not been the issue. I am afriad of the snow. We don't have a thawing issue but Bodhi does not seem to navigate the snow very well. Hopefully we will both learn soon!

    Have fun in the snow! I recommend snow shoeing too! Lots of fun!

  9. Good afternoon!

    HoC - Sun and cold today,but still hopeful for another couple of inches this this week. Yes, horses change the way you look at things.

    50+ - Embrace it! :-)

    Detroit - I have a friend who had miniature greyhounds. She has to bundle them up in sweaters, but they love the snow!

    Shannon - Thanks! I think I will be out on the trails next weekend.

    Golden - So great that you and Bodhi are trying out winter. Winnipeg is hardcore winter...good for you!

  10. I'm a snow lover, but I don't ride when it's snow and ice. Right now my horses can barely walk in their turnouts it's so bad--like a skating rink! Ugh!! If the temps edge up, it will start to melt, and then I might try it. In the meantime, I like to snowshoe and hot tub--and the hot tub looks right at the pasture and the horses. Heaven--lazy heaven, that is.

  11. Hi Linda - How cool is that that you can sit in a hot tub and watch your horses!