I had gone to the barn owners house for an early afternoon thanksgiving dinner. After eating and dessert K and I went out to ride. It was oddly warm out for this time of year - 65F to be exact. I thought few weekends ago was going to be the last of our warm weather but this time I'm even more sure since we are getting snow today.
I got Dakota in and could tell he was going to be grumpy so I put him on the lunge line and W/T/C him for 5-10 minutes to get the kinks out of him which really helped and he seemed happier after.
K and I warmed up in the arena and then hit the trails. We walked around few times and then began trotting around. Dakota being sorta hyper jumped into the trot and took a few awkward strides of his trot / canter oddness that he likes to do. I laughed it off and trotted on.
My knee was feeling good and he was responsive and I got the crazy idea to ask him for a canter.
Now... For those that know me are probably in shock. It has been, at minimum, 8 years since I've cantered. After my 2nd concussion in high school and constant problems with my equilibrium cantering was not an option for me. Any time I'd ask for one in an arena, it was as if I had never rode and would slide right off into the ground any time I cantered a corner. So this is a bigger deal than it would be for most.
K trotted while I asked Dakota to pick up a canter, he was kinda hesitant but we got 3 strides before I pulled him back to the walk. It felt absolutely amazing! He has the best rhythmic rocking horse canter when he gets in stride. K and I trotted around some more and I tried a new spot to ask for the canter, this time I got in a good 10-15 strides and I was grinning ear to ear. We rode back up to the barn to get my iPhone so K could video the proof of my canter.
We went back out for one more go at the canter, see it for yourself in the video before :D right after the video ended he put his head down and started to round his back and not look like a giraffe with.his head in the air. We cooled out and K went on to do some cross country work with Glitch.
Lots of work ahead of me on cantering but had to start somewhere - it'll be awhile before I gain the courage to try turning again. I can see some lunge line lessons in my future.
Echo got yet another night off. Tomorrow is back to our schedule of training. Her new girth should be here tomorrow so it won't be such a pain to saddle her.