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Horsing Around this Christmas

Wednesday, December 7th 2011

While you are making gifts for your family and watching the Rockmont Thanksgiving DVD, you may be wondering what all of our horses and other barn animals are up to this Christmas season. Do they even celebrate Christmas? What do they do during the winter months?

Well, wonder no more! I headed over to the stables last week to check in with our very own wrangler and Riding Director, Sara Boelt, to see what the barn animals have been up to since the summer ended. What a fun visit! I delivered some Santa-wear that Karen and Josie Davis had created for the horses to wear during the annual Black Mountain Christmas Parade. Just for fun, Sara and I had a dress rehearsal with a few of the horses. We even dressed up Sancho, everyone’s favorite donkey (pictured left with Sara), so that he wouldn’t feel left out. Several Rockmont horses made it to the parade, including Caspian, who dressed as the reindeer Vixen and was ridden by another member of the Rockmont family, Emily Beaver (pictured below). Lighter, Buddy, Dillon, Samson, Terje, Dapple Dumplin, and Dagmar were also on hand for the big event. As you can see, celebrating Christmas is an important part of the year for our summer steeds.

After a short break following camp, the horses saddled up again for Sara’s off-season riding lessons. Sara provides lessons in Hunt seat riding, an English style of riding, for local folks who want to learn. This is really good for everyone because it keeps our horses in good shape and in regular contact with riders. Closer to Halloween, they participated in trials at the Haunted Horsemanship competition. Buddy dressed as an American Indian, while Caspian competed as a unicorn. The horses even got to see a little action in another competition that we hosted right here at camp down on the lower fields. Aside from lessons, the horses still go on trail rides, though the scenery is a little different now with the leaves gone and cooler weather. If you were to ask them, the Norwegian Fjords would tell you that they are actually looking forward to winter and hoping for a little snow. Others, particularly the older horses, prefer thick blankets and the cozy protection of the barn during winter.

And what about Beau? For those of you who visited the stables last summer, you would have met an old hound dog who came to spend his retirement at the Rockmont stables. He was a little shy at first, but we are pleased to report that he has warmed up quite nicely to life at the stables, following Sara around as she performs the necessary winter chores. Beau, Lighter, and the rest of the Rockmont gang out at the stables look forward to seeing you next summer when you sign up for a Trail Ride. Until then, they’ll be right here getting ready for you!

Learn more about Trail Rides at Camp Rockmont

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