I decided to take Fleck to Harbins even though I had just hacked it with Dan yesterday. But I figured Fleck could use a long distance day and apparently Ashland was full of pony clubbers and event team people. So we went. It's really not a bad trail at all. Not a ton of scenery but the leaves were pretty. And the 4 mile loop is pretty. And there is a lot of hills too.
We had a good ride. Fleck was a little worried at the beginning and was a bit spooky but settled. However, he felt a little sluggish today still. The first 4 miles we mostly meandered and definitely did a good 25 minutes warming up at the walk. But Fleck really didn't seem to keen to canter. He trotted fine but wasn't "dragging me" like he often does. And I really kind of had to push the canter. And every tight turn, he broke to the trot instead of continuing to canter. I realized though that since I had started the 6 mile loop, and had only done 4 miles in 1 hour, we had better pick up the pace or we would be out there much longer than I wanted. So I pushed for more trotting and we did a good bit. We did a fair amount of cantering too. Then when we hit the 3 mile mark on the 6 mile loop and turned back to home, Fleck hit a new gear. I couldn't keep him from trotting. Which is weird for him. Well, not that he kept wanting to trot, but that he kept wanting to trot when earlier I had to push. And he's not usually one to want to speed up heading home. Heck, I don't think he even knows which way his home half the time. Although he is getting a bit more herd bound lately. Or perhaps he just took 7 miles to really loosen up?? It was odd. I mean, he really wouldn't walk. I could drop my stirrups and he'd walk but as soon as I'd pick them up, he was trotting again. I finally made him walk the last 1/2 mile home so he wasn't too hot. Goof!