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  • Day57

    Backcountry Saddle Expeditions

    January 26, 2020 in New Zealand ⋅ ⛅ 19 °C

    At 9.30 am I arrived at the Backcountry Saddle Experience in Cardrona.
    I found this tour on Bookme and my friends in Queenstown actually were also recommending this place.

    First I had to sign in and fill in a safety paper.
    While we were waiting for the last people to show up Pam, the owner, was deciding to get the first group already away.
    So she and Olivia started to give the first 7 of us, including me our horses.
    My horse I Cherona but everyone calls her Cheesy.
    As you maybe can see, they have Appaloosa horses here!
    Really cool colors and super chilled horses. They stand loose around the yard and no one is walking away! Really impressive.
    And what was very important for me, they all look really, really good! Big belly and a lot of muscles! 👍🏼😊

    When everyone in our group got their horse they started to but the bridles on, tide the belt and help the other people upon the horses. Looks like I was ending up in a beginner group 🙄😅
    3 total beginners, 2 with a little bit experience and on with good riding abilities.
    Well, I was not expecting too much, let’s see what will happen today.

    When everyone was ready and happy we got the order to stay behind each other and always in the same order as it is best like this for the horses.
    I was ending up as last behind two really slow horses with total beginners on them that had no idea what to do. 🙈😬
    Oh my god, I was thinking. But I decided that it doesn’t matter and I will enjoy the ride anyway.
    Pam told me, that Cheesy can be a little bitch and get grumpy when I use my legs too much, so I should pay a little bit attention to this and if she tries to bite me I should really tell her to stop it.
    Ok, at least my horse has an own mind, sounds interesting. Me and grumpy mares... 🙈😂

    Then it was time to leave the yard. We went with Olivia, while Pam was fixing the other group ready.
    We started to slowly walk up a hill. After the first gate, we were passing Olivia asked if everyone is feeling comfortable and as the answer was yes from everyone she said, perfect let’s trot a bit.
    That was a surprise for me! I was not expecting that we gonna trot as well so that was really nice!

    The horses are so calm and behaving so well, that it’s even for the total beginners absolutely no problem to handle them and trot around a little bit.
    I started to like the trip more and more as we were more and more often trotting some parts, where the track was really good.
    As we had to pass another gate, Olivia was going around and just checking everyone’s belt and tighten them up a little bit more, if needed. She asks the woman in front of me, the other good rider if she was feeling for a canter, but her answer was no.
    So I was like: I’d like to if it’s ok?
    The answer was: “of coarse!
    You are anyway the last one so that’s absolutely no problem, just wait by the gate while we trot over the field and I will wave at you when you can start to Galopp after us!”

    Oh yes, now I was really happy and super excited.
    Cheesy as well. She got also really excited when the other ones were trotting away from us, so she didn’t want to standstill.
    When Olivia waved at me, I just had to give Cheesy the head free and of we go!
    She is as happy as I am over this nice canter!
    She is not running like crazy after the other horses so we had a nice canter over the field until we were back with the group!

    And I even got the chance for one more 🤗😎
    The same system here, I was waiting until the other once for a bit away and then we took off again. 🤩🥰

    The next part was mostly up a hill on a small path so we had to walk for a while until we reached a small but steep hill, where everyone was allowed to take a short canter up the hill if they wanted to.
    We had to wait a while as a few people in front of us were walking up the hill anyway.
    Cheesy got too excited that she was turning a little bit too early around the corner so she had to jump over a little creek.
    Well, I got a jump as well 😉
    She also showed me her bitch faces a few times when she was thinking that I am telling her to often to keep up with the rest of the group, sometimes even before I was doing something, just like she was saying: “Don’t you dare to touch my belly with your heels!! “ 🤣🤣 Mares 🙈🤣
    Shortly after that, we reached the highest part of our track where Olivia was so nice to take some pictures from us. After that, we followed a path down the hill and got only to trot two more times for a short bit as this track is very uneven.
    We had to pass a few mud holes and even two creeks.
    On the first one, the horses got a chance to drink, what everyone also did!

    A little bit more than 2 hours after leaving the yard we were back.
    The horses got a food bag around their had and was all standing loose at the yard happy about some food 😊

    I was the last one to leave as I wanted to thank Olivia for the possibility to canter as well.
    She told me, that they always give the experienced riders the chance and that’s why I was riding at last so I could easily pull up and wait without disturbing the other horses.
    Very good system and so nice, that every rider gets a chance to really enjoy the trip in this kind of way!

    I am so glad, I booked exactly this tour! 😊
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