I hadn't expected to ride today - the high was only supposed to be 13F, which is too cold for me. But the bright sun pushed the temperatures above 15F in the early afternoon, and the temperatures didn't start falling again as early as they had predicted - it's supposed to get to -5F tonight with wind chills of -25F. I grabbed the opportunity and took Red for a ride - Dawn, Pie and Missy got good groomings - Pie has a very large hematoma on his neck, so I wouldn't have ridden him anyway - looks like another horse bit him without really cutting the skin but really held on.
I wanted to see how Red would be after his moment of obnoxiousness two days ago. I'm pleased to say that, despite the presence of a horse in the ring galloping around and then being dragged to a halt and aggressively backed - over, and over again - and then whacked hard with a crop every time he shied or spooked (I don't endorse such "training" methods) - Red was perfect. Red sometimes gets alarmed when other people are aggressive with their horses, which is understandable. Today he stayed with me and didn't worry too much.
I did a few reinforcements of his leading manners as we left the barn to go to the arena, and while we were leading to the mounting block. This mostly consisted of stopping and starting and softly asking him to back out of my space. He did this without trouble. I'm particularly pleased to report that, when I went to put the reins over his head as we were getting ready to mount up, he considered - for only a fraction of a second - nipping at my hand but instantly decided on his own not to do that - good Red.
Our ride was uneventful - in fact it was excellent - lots of nice, forward, relaxed trot work. Just the ticket for a very cold day. Things are gradually starting to warm up beginning tomorrow, so there will be more rides in the near future . . .