Barn Blog: Embracing the New Season

33452.jpeg?ixlib=rails 2.1
Sunset over Hidden Lake.

It seems we are going to finally get some cooler weather. It is now nearing the middle of November and we are starting to have some of those crisp, clear mornings the horses obviously relish. As I walk through the Greystone barn this morning it feels far removed from the bustling activity we are all accustomed to here.

The last of the fall colors are clinging to the trees and except for the echo of the familiar clip clop of one of the horses being led down the aisle way, or the rustle of dry sycamore leaves blowing through the breezeways it is much quieter than the busier, happy sounds of summer. I wish everyone could experience the Greystone Riding Facility this time of year.

The farrier is here today for his weekly visit and I can hear the roar of his forge and the ring of the anvil as he shapes the shoes to fit. It’s cold and rainy today but I always like to take a little time and visit with him. The smell of the smoke and snort of the horse, to me is like hot cocoa on a snowy day. I am always amazed when he fits the hot shoe with smoke rolling up around the horse until all you can see is his neck and head and he just stands there calmly like he doesn’t even notice it is him that is smoking!

Most of the saddles and bridles, except for a few that are still in use, are cleaned, oiled and retired for the winter. The scent of all that clean leather almost overtakes me when I walk through the tack room, bringing back memories of my own childhood, cleaning my saddle and bridle before a Horse show.

It’s time now to drag out all the turnout rugs, rain sheets, and stable blankets for the winter season. Very soon we will likely be chipping ice from the water troughs and putting out hay on snowy pastures probably sprinkled with a few carrots that the horses seem to view as hidden treasure.

The day is now coming to an end. It is one of my favorite times. Tired but contented after a long days work in this cool mountain air, I take my last check of the horses. Walking the aisles and paddocks, I love hearing the soft munching of hay and seeing all our horses tucked in: warm, cozy, and happy for another night.

And I think to myself, winter is just starting and it’s a great time for planning and reflection. Before I know it, it will be time to start gearing up for another great camp season here at the Greystone barn. I’m already getting excited!