Thursday, July 16, 2009

Neat and Safe Way to Dally Your Leadrope

If you like to ride with a rope halter and lead attached to your horse, as opposed to back at the barn when you suddenly need it!, here's a neat and safe way to keep your leadrope out of your way but still handy as you ride.

I like having a leadrope to tie John to a tree when we stop, because it's strictly forbidden to tie a horse by reins -- in spite of what we all grew up seeing on TV westerns. The horse's mouth could get badly injured that way.

But for several years I struggled with the lead wrapped around the saddle horn, coming unwrapped, slithering around, and being a general pain. Then a lovely lady showed me this trick which I am passing on in case you might not have seen it already!

STEP 1:Start with this:

You have looped the lead over the saddle horn, leaving enough on the horse end for him to move freely and stretch out his neck, but not enough to get a foot or branch caught.

STEP 2: Make a loop however you like; no knot!! just a loop of rope.

STEP 3: Pull a loop of the tail end of the rope through the first loop you made, but not all the way through; stop when you have a nice little second loop, like this:

STEP 4: Repeat Step 3, as many times as it takes to get a nice chain of loops leaving a reasonable tail length. It should just be out of your way.

STEP 5: Tail through last loop.
If you just leave your "crocheted" loops hanging, they will come undone as you ride. So the last thing you do is thread the tail through the last loop, just like you do with a quick-release knot to keep your horse from untying himself.

And that's that!

Your rope is right there when you need to undo it quickly and pop a rattlesnake on the head, or whip yourself for having such an expensive hobby, or even tie your horse.

In case you are wondering how I got John to stand still for these pictures since his lead rope is obviously not attached to anything! He is eating. The Second Coming could occur, with horns and earthquakes and celestial ladies riding on bulls, and he would go. on. eating.

This part of our trail system I refer to as "The Runway" because it looks like we could just fly out into blue sky from here. It actually ends in a steep slope down to a hay field.

On today's ride 2 neat things happened:

1. We saw bear scat right in the middle of the trail; John recognized it and acted a bit nervous and wary for awhile. And:

2. We were zoomed by a huge bird - I mean wingspan of about 5 feet. It came soundlessly down from behind us and almost touched John's ears. I was too scared to notice what kind of bird it might have been. "Birdus Really Biggus" I think would be the scientific name.


photogchic said...

I heard that particular knot is called a "Daisy Chain." I used that a lot when I used to ride with mecate reins. Watch out for those bears! Get some bear bells for Johnny. They sell these cool horse necklaces called "rhythm beads" that help them keep tempo. I think they are great for riding in the woods to scare away critters.

Flying Lily said...

Photogchic: Thanks! Now I have a name for it. I do love the idea of the bells.

c2b said...

Hmmm going to have to do some thinking as no horn...
I want some bear bells. I can just imagine the noise as we trot along.

Flying Lily said...

c2b; Do you have a ring on the front of the saddle? You could hang a carabinier from the ring and start your rope loop on the carabinier - I've seen that done.

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

I tie my horse's lead rope to the trailer that way, but hadn't thought about doing it around the horn too. Sometimes I just wrap it in loose circles around the horn and sometimes I hold it with my thigh, which would get uncomfortable on a long ride. I like your idea best.

c2b said...

Brilliant. You have saved me the job of using my brain. I think I still have a brain somewhere. Last saw it being used as a door stop!!
I have never attached the lead rope to the headcollar when riding. I just have it tied up hanging off the D ring to be used if I need it.

Mrs Mom said...

Cool idea- I've always just looped it around the horn, or left it at home in the past! Have to keep this in mind if I can ever get back ON a horse again...!

Rubs to John from us. He looks awesome!

allhorsestuff said...

Thanks for the Idea..I have been riding with my endurance bridle lately(has built in halter and removeable bit attach) and I have been totally floundering with the silly rope!
Today...will try my loops give way asd we go..or get so blasted tight, I can't get the rope undone!
Thanks again
Kacy w/Wa mare

Horseypants said...

Hi, there's an award for you at my blog...

Pony Girl said...

Thanks for the tutorial! My leadrope is short enough I can just wrap it around the horn a few times, but if I ever took my 14ft. Parelli line, I could do that to it!

Flying Lily said...

Mrs.Mom: Thank you! I know this must be your busy not enough time to ride. :( Things will calm down when the Wrecking Crew gets on in years!

AllHorseStuff: Hope it works well for you! Quick access is one of the things I like about this little trick. So: I could jump off, tie John to a tree, and go chase bears hahahaha hmm...

Horseypants: I'll be right over how exciting!

PonyGirl: I ordered an extra long lead because the usual length ones don't allow for going around a large tree twice, which someone told me is mandatory but not sure why...

Breathe said...

I actually use this knot to tie with to a rail. it doesn't tighten and has a quick release (if you don't tuck in the tail). I learned it in my rock climbing days.

Quiet birds are usually hunter types - owls, hawks, eagles. The rest can make noise. I wonder if it was an owl... I'm sure you could submit your suggested scientific name! :)

allhorsestuff said...

Thanks again..I love the chain type rope knot..tis working well for the mare and I!

One Red Horse said...

This was great - I used a version of your tie rope dally on my first field trials. No more nasty, slipping, loopy, tangled rope. Thanks!