At last, this weekend brought with it some good weather, and I was able to ride Echo outside again. I really appreciate having the indoor school as a facility, but it is harder to ride in there, due to its size and the fact that Echo naps towards the door a little bit still.
On Saturday I rode her in the outdoor school, while my boyfriend manned the video camera. Unfortunately the battery was low and he only got the first few minutes of me riding free, and also unfortunately it was on the left rein, so she doesn't look her best. She actually started going much more forward after the camera had died - typical!
I will attempt to upload the video to this blog as soon as I have worked out how to do it. It is quite amusing, as it captured our first attempt at trotting through a puddle (it had been raining A LOT in the previous few days) and Echo's subsequent emergency stop in the middle of the puddle. I think she just suddenly realised she was in the water!
On Sunday morning, we went for our first mini hack. We were on our own, but with someone walking beside us, and we just went out for about ten minutes. Several good things came out of it, however, as she had to pass the turn off to her field, and although she called repeatedly for her friends (who were not there, thankfully) she did not nap towards it. We then walked into the cross country course - we had to go down a hill, which she found rather tricky with me on her back, then up a big sandy track back out into view of the fields at the top of the centre. She was a little vocal through this, and although she tenses up when she calls, she didn't stray from the line I put her on, and she responded well to my voice.
It wasn't huge, but it was another step forward, and these things have to start slowly.