From the Ed­i­tor

Horse & Rider - - Contents -

I’LL BE HON­EST: Fall isn’t my fa­vorite sea­son. While we’re for­tu­nate here in Colorado to have warm, rid­ing-ready weather well into late autumn, it still comes with many draw­backs for horse own­ers. The most prob­lem­atic part of the sea­son for our fam­ily is the shorter days mean less sad­dle time once you fac­tor in the kids’ school and home­work. And that an­nual ex­pected-un­ex­pected early snow­storm sure puts a kink in my fam­ily’s horse life.

But fall isn’t all bad. Es­pe­cially if you’re pre­pared and have events to look forward to! This is­sue is packed with in­for­ma­tion to get you ready.

AN­NUAL BLANKET BUY­ERS’ GUIDE

It’s long­stand­ing H&R tra­di­tion to kick off fall with a round-up of what’s new in win­ter horse blan­kets. Be­gin­ning on page 63, you’ll meet five read­ers from all dif­fer­ent cli­mates and with var­i­ous blanket needs. We matched them up with blanket op­tions they can con­sider for their sit­u­a­tions, which might mir­ror your own needs and of­fer you some much-needed in­for­ma­tion.

A blanket pur­chase can be a hefty in­vest­ment, so “Solutions,” page 36, of­fers tips for stor­ing and clean­ing your win­ter horsewear to in­crease its longevity.

FALL = CHAM­PI­ONSHIP SEA­SON

If you’re a com­peti­tor or some­one who en­joys watch­ing elite horses demon­strate their skills, you know that fall kicks off the cham­pi­onship show sea­son for most breeds and dis­ci­plines. For ex­am­ple, the Paint and Ap­paloosa world shows and the All Amer­i­can Quar­ter Horse Congress be­gin and/or end in Oc­to­ber, high­light­ing the best in the show pen.

Turn to page 30 to learn about a cham­pi­onship event steeped in tra­di­tion: the Na­tional Reined Cow Horse As­so­ci­a­tion’s Snaf­fle Bit Fu­tu­rity. This year the event moves from Reno, Ne­vada, to the more cen­trally lo­cated Fort Worth, Texas. We of­fer in­sight into the event, as

well as share the best places to eat, trail ride, and even buy a horse while you at­tend the fu­tu­rity.

TIME TO TRY SOME­THING NEW

Fall might mean it’s time to add a new event to your skill set. We have you cov­ered in this is­sue with two dif­fer­ent pos­si­bil­i­ties to choose from.

Mounted shoot­ing con­tin­ues to grow in pop­u­lar­ity with riders of all lev­els and ages. But if the thought of desensitizing your horse to gunfire leaves your heart pound­ing, we have a Pri­vate Les­son just for you. World cham­pion gun­slinger Kenda Len­seigne of­fers her best ad­vice to start the process be­gin­ning on page 43.

If you have a reiner or work­ing cow horse and are look­ing to branch out, you’ll want to read Bud Lyon’s ad­vice for adapt- ing your mount for ranch rid­ing. “Thanks to a solid train­ing foun­da­tion,” he says, “you could add the event to your reiner or cow horse’s reper­toire with min­i­mal train­ing ef­fort on your part. That means one more class for you to com­pete in and greater di­ver­sity for your horse’s skill set.”

YOUR FALL AD­VICE

How do you adapt your barn and rid­ing rou­tines for fall? Do you find your­self spend­ing more time at the barn, be­cause the siz­zling sum­mer months have passed? Or is your sad­dle time lim­ited by cool, wet weather, ne­ces­si­tat­ing cre­ativ­ity on your part to spend time with your horse? Share your fall tips, and you could see them in an up­com­ing is­sue of Horse&Rider in our reader-driven Sad­dle Chat de­part­ment.

You can reach Jen­nifer Paulson at jpaul­son@aim­me­dia.com.

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