When the going gets tough, the tough gets...
Honestly, with Forrest's penchant for overreaches and heel bruises, while I await our last ditch (and pricey) effort of Italian bell boots to be delivered, a gal's gotta do something to protect her accident prone child. And you know what? For short bouts of turn out, these work fine.
While they were effective initially, my "padded" bell boots did not stay on for hours. Which means I've got to be sure I'm the one to do the last mowing of the season as I would be mortified to have a hired hand come out for the bush hogging and ask me why my field is strewn with panty liners!
Anyway, Forrest was beginning to look pretty sound and just as I was looking forward to putting my boy back to work, the heavens opened for three days straight.
This is so disappointing as I have been really wanting to get Forrest out of the arena. There's nothing better for a young horse's brain and fitness than to work out in the open, as long as one feels safe, and I feel safe when I can longe Forrest, first, in the arena. But just like humans, no horse wants to be in an office all day. The open field helps them think forward and changes things up a bit from what can be a dull routine. And nothing helps build stamina and muscle than a nice walk over gentle hills. I did at least manage one day where we were able to take him on a long, hilly walk.
Which was exceedingly brave of him, considering this was where a bear was seen, coming out of these very woods, while Forrest had been turned out in the adjacent field. He came roaring back to the barn (striking two heels in the bargain) to warn me, although I hadn't a clue what he was worried about until my student, who just happened to be going up my driveway, spotted the beast and texted: "There's a HUGE bear coming across the pasture toward your barn!!!"
By the time I read the text and scrambled to the front of the barn, it had disappeared through the opposite tree line. So we were all safe although Forrest was in dire need of some carrot therapy afterward.