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.