BIG FAT HEAVY SIGH.
I suppose I should have known that winter still had another trick up her sleeve. The end of January was just so nice, and so warm. I got lulled into a false sense of confidence, excited about a full calendar and ramping up for spring.
We had grand plans to head up to MeadowCreek this past weekend to do some XC schooling. I was very excited to be heading somewhere besides Pine Hill. I love PH, don’t get me wrong, but that’s where we always school and there’s nothing on their course that Henry and I haven’t already jumped. I was looking forward to some new challenges and a change of scenery. Plus the first show of the season is at MeadowCreek, and I really wanted to check out their Prelim course.
Originally we were supposed to get a gross cold front on Friday, but it was supposed to stay above 40 and be relatively dry. Miserable, but still workable. And then Friday rolled around and it was actually 32 degrees and frozen shit was falling from the sky.
But… hey… we’re eventers. As long as the ground is good, we’ll tough it out for XC. Dressage maybe not so much, but XC – heck yes. We got the all clear for schooling, so we got up on Saturday, loaded the horses, and off we went.
And then, when we were only about 20 minutes away from the venue, Trainer called and said she’d just gotten there and it was definitely way too wet to school. UGH. But we were already close, and we had Dobby with us, who could at least benefit from having a look around the facility, so onward we went. Trainer was right, it was REALLY wet. Squishy mud everywhere, to the point where I didn’t even want to get on to hack. So Henry rode 2 hours in a trailer to unload, stand in a stall while Dobby scoped out the place, get back in the trailer, and ride 2 hours back home.
And then it basically spat rain on and off for the entire rest of the weekend. It was cold, it was wet, and it was disgusting. The ground is so saturated at this point that any little bit of rain immediately turns things to muck. All I got to do with Henry all weekend was a walk hack. So much for productivity.
I was waiting to send in my MeadowCreek entry for their March recognized show until after this schooling-that-didn’t-happen, so now I’m feeling a little up in the air about what to do. I’m looking at the forecast for the next couple weeks and wondering how good the ground will actually be in a month’s time, as we head into what is typically our wettest time of year. Henry is NOT a mudder, even with big studs in, so I’m definitely not looking to run his first recognized Prelim in potentially questionable footing. Plus all 3 phases at MeadowCreek are run on grass.
I’ve got 2 more weeks until closing date, so at this point I’m kind of just waiting to send my entry in, watching the weather and hoping that everything will dry up. I’ll really only be able to afford a couple of recognized shows this spring, so if a show gets cancelled or I have to scratch after closing date and I lose my entry fee, I’m just kind of screwed. Of course, there are also only a couple of what I would call “inviting” Prelim courses in Area 5, so if the two shows that I have in mind don’t work out, I’m not sure what my fall back plan would be. My options are limited.
We’re entered in another Pine Hill horse trial this coming weekend, although I think we’re all a bit skeptical that it will actually happen, at least in it’s full format. They are wetwetwet and it’s supposed to rain more there today. The January one was cancelled, so I’m not sure what will happen with this one. There has been talk of modifying the XC course to take out the areas with the worst footing, if need be. At this point I’ll take anything, even a CT, although we really need some XC too. Whatever we can get. Come on weather, I’m finally trying to For Real do this thing that I thought I’d definitely never do, and you’re killing me here. Especially because, in a few short months, we’ll be winding things down due to heat. SO MANY HEAVY SIGHS.
In better news – keep an eye on my Instagram this afternoon for a fun giveaway! There will be free money up for grabs. Everyone loves free money.