Winter is here! True jubilation arises. Hooray, snow! Hooray, sleet! Hooray, the sky is gray! Hooray, we can ice skate, sled, build snowmen, get the next flu! There are prayers for a white Christmas and for sunny, ice-cold winter mornings. I pray, too: for it to finally end and become spring.
Winter and the daily adventures at the barn
Winter means frozen pipes, slippy ground, and hot horses. Going for a hack in winter wonderland can be magical, but for the most part you’re trying to feel your fingers and toes again. The boiling heat of summer isn’t any better though. So, if you’re visiting a stud or talk to an equestrian, you’ll most probably hear them complain about the weather.
But let’s get back to why equestrians have more “fun” in winter. Winter is an adventure, and we have gathered 15 reasons why. So, lets get straight into it:
- Horse Riding is an excellent winter sport, especially because of the heated arena and barn.
- Your horse stepped on your foot? Not a problem in winter. Feet, hands, and pretty much everything else is frozen and numb anyway so you won’t feel anything, not even a thousand pounds on your foot.
- Frosty mornings are lovely? True, they do look beautiful, but it’s a trap! The pipes are frozen as well as the puddle at the entrance to the paddock, and you can’t open your locker either because the lock froze over, too. Driving you mad those frosty mornings.
- Wearing super cold and stiff leather boots feels great, too!
- Winter is cold, and horses are hot. Non-equestrians wouldn’t understand a word, but we all know what that means. The difficult stuff like piaffe, passage suddenly becomes super easy and some lazy horse turns into a speed-loving and bucking psycho.
- Some people love challenges like jumping into the snow naked. Equestrians simply go straight to the barn after work or school and change into icy clothes in the tack room (not heated, of course). So, yeah, that’s how we do it (every single day!).
- Sometimes even the horse makes fun of us. We are about to get them ready for the ride, and what do we see when we arrive at the paddock? The horse is entirely covered in mud. Great! Yep, well done, buddy!
- Competing in winter is interesting, too. We can now officially claim that long-sleeved show shirts are just as cold as short-sleeved ones.
- Winter wonderland looks stunning, and you can’t wait to go for a little hack? Be prepared for frozen legs, toes, fingers, and a runny nose. But hold on, before you pack tissues be aware that it’ll all freeze in an instant, too, so there’s no need for tissues anyway.
- Let’s have a look at what equestrians wear in winter. With the cold temperature, the game of who wears the most layers begins. It’s incredible how many pieces of clothing one single human can wear. There are several pair of tights and leggings underneath the breeches and of course many many socks. The upper body is wrapped in t-shirts, and long-sleeves, hoodies and fleeces, jackets, a scarf and two pair of gloves. All that gets topped up with a sweet little bobble hat and we’re good to go.
- Clipping horses can actually be fun as you can decide on your favorite clipping shape. Is it gonna be a heart, a star, or the logo of your favorite football club on your ponies butt this year? Some would cringe, but hey, it’s 2021 you can’t judge!
- Dismounting becomes a challenge, too, but it’s for sure funny for everyone who’s watching. You’ll try to dismount as slowly as possible because your feet are so cold that you can’t jump off your horse as you’d normally do it. Or you do, but you know that you must expect the pain of hell as soon as your feet touch the ground.
- The indoors suddenly becomes popular, and you meet sooo many people here. Sounds like a positive thing? Equestrians know better.
- The sparkling lights are so cozy and romantic! There are particularly romantic LED lights at the barn, or you choose the pitch-black night that awaits you outside after 4 pm. But there’s a good thing in this. It is much easier to ignore the mud and dirt everywhere and especially on your horse when it’s dark.
- Forget Switzerland, the alps, and skiing. Equestrians are where the kettle is. Tea, Mash, defrosting pipes, survival, the kettle never lets you down (but have a spare one, just in case).
That being said, I wish you a merry Christmas, strong nerves, and warm clothes. Spring is coming soon!