Katie & West (L) and Becca & Kaos (R) with Kelso in between - Rhio was actually leading at a walk! I think of him having a slow walk, but he was very forward today.
After about a mile, however, Rhio, Kelso, & I continued on while the rest of the crew hung back. We had a lot of gas in our tanks & places to go! Of course, once Rhio realized the horses weren't coming with us, he was less enthusiastic. After not too long, however, we continued along our route at a nice easy pace and had a really great ride.
Why do I own a grey horse?!?! This is what he looked like after trotting 7 miles on wet, muddy gravel roads.
And Kelso's sporting quite the mud splattered look as well!
As it's spring now & we're starting back into serious riding, I'm making tack adjustments. Today I changed Rhio's hackamore noseband cover from a fuzzy sheepskin which has seemed SO itchy for him (and he has an itchy head in general, anyway) to vetwrap. The underlying noseband is stiff coated rope, which is too harsh & too abrasive for the long hours Rhio spends wearing it. So far, the vetwrap seems like it's going to work well.
I also rode him in Red's Synergist saddle for our first long ride in it. Interestingly, he exhibited his leg-lifting behavior while tacking & mounting, but he seemed completely at ease in motion. I wasn't completely happy with how his back looked at the end of the ride, though. He had zero soreness, but a small patch of rubbed hair on the right side of his withers which was somewhat dry (indicating too much pressure there, I think). I will have to keep a close eye on this.
Not only does the vetwrapped noseband seem less itchy to him, it's also a cleaner silhouette, which I like. Now if finding a new saddle were as easy!