First ride for months and months - Ziggy is a dude


Jane&Sid these days!
Apr 30, 2010
Surrey Hills
I know I haven't ridden this year and I probably haven't ridden since October, so perhaps I should have been a bit thoughtful when I agreed to go out today with my friend and livery mate Suzi and her 7 year old filly. My right hand is still sore and has no strength at all.

But I shouldn't have worried. My darling Ziggy is the most consistent pony ever. He is always cheeky about stealing mouthfuls of this and that, and he'll always speed up like a little sewing machine half way round the hack. Apart from that, he is a rock. As we waited to set off, I was mounted, Suzi was holding Izzy, and several riders passed us and then a huge lorry and Izzy (who is very green) was snorting and spinning and rushing backwards and making a palaver, and Ziggy just stood completely still and rolled his eyes like Gromit. We went round a very spooky route, mares & foals and stallions, freshly cut trees and heaven knows what, and apart from trying once to trot off with me (which is normal) he was perfect. Just as well as I was hardly strong enough to do up his girth so it was loose through the whole ride!

Suzi is a very good and experienced horsewoman, and she said, "Uncle Ziggy is wonderful isn't he, he's always just the same." And I gave his withers a rub and smirked.

It was lovely to be out. We can't do dressage, or collection, or show jumping, but my little hacking pony is a total dude.


With out my boys life would be bland
Apr 16, 2009
What a dude. I do think they pick up on and know when we are not 100%.

The biggest smile I get is when I think ginger has been amazing and by that I don't mean scored well or went clear I mean I enjoyed the ride he made it feel amazing be it a hack, jump,comp or school it does not matter
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Cantering cabbage!
May 18, 2009
What a lovely thread, thank you for sharing your hack with us, I love reading happy hack threads as I often feel that hacking is seen as a bit of a poor relation in the horsey world, he is a darling boy isn't he.

KP nut

I'd rather be riding.
Dec 22, 2008
I often feel that hacking is seen as a bit of a poor relation in the horsey world

I'm sorry you feel that way :(

I think hacking is the ultimate horse skill: In an arena/ event or at a competition you are in a totally controlled environment, even if you are X-C schooling or whatever. Yesterday's Farm, Ride at Somerford park was a good example: no traffic, no dogs, no bicycles etc etc. Lovely well maintained footing all the way round in a one way system so no oncoming horses. And nowhere to go apart from a horse-friendly track even if your horse did run off.

Out hacking you have to have trust, obedience, reliability, sure footedness, confidence in each other, versatility. You have to be able to open and close gates, get on and off without assistance and deal independently with the unexpected. I let my girls compete on Oscar but I don;t let them hack out off a lead rein yet! Hacking Cally makes me more nervous than anything else we do together as it is a bigger ask of her than anything else. If you have a good hacking pony then you have a good pony, imo.

Nov 10, 2014
Sounds fab :) it's great when you get back in after a while and you just have the biggest smile from tacking up to untacking :D

Hacking is my life these days now that Kia is semi retired and I have to say I wouldn't be without it no matter what horse I had, if I had another like Eowyn who was quite bad in the beginning I would be pushing through again as sometimes a hack is just the best medicine ever :)
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