View Full Version : Hacking Alone
3rd Jan 2003, 02:09 PM
Is it just me who prefers hacking alone? I much prefer it, just me and the horse, we can go where we want, at what speed we want, I can sing to her (although she doesn't like my singing!) i can talk to her and we can just switch off from the whole world for a few hours, is anyone else like me or do you all prefer to hack out with company?
maybe its because I used to have to hack out with a little pony and the girl got fed up cause her pony had to jog to keep up and my horse wouldn't walk any slower. sometimes i like company on a hack, but I'd rather be alone.
what do you all think?
3rd Jan 2003, 02:19 PM
I always used to enjoy hacking out alone, but recently, the only chance I've had to ride has been helping another girl on the yard with her horse, and that horse only goes out in company. Not as much fun because everyone else wanted to gallop the whole time, which I used to love, but I didn't know the horse well, and didn't really trust it.
3rd Jan 2003, 02:19 PM
I'm very selfish about my horse time full-stop. I love hacking on my own for the same reasons as you describe, but then I love riding on my own. Just me, my ned and the big wide world - beats all the self-help books/lifesytle gurus and glossy girlie magazines offering sugar-sweet advice in the world. It gives me time to think things through, review my day and unwind. I think some people up at the yard think I am a bit of a loner as I am too busy around my horse to get involved in gossip and news - which couldn't be further from the truth. My horse is my sanctuary from the humdrum world and has been for a very long time. The best bit is definitely hacking out on a cold winter's morning on my own. Unfortunately due to the wet soggy weather we haven't had many of those recently.
3rd Jan 2003, 02:22 PM
I do like hacking alone sometimes - but it is not very feasible where we are up on Hadrian's Wall - if I came off and hurt myself in the moorland I might not be found for days! Not good :(
If I stick to the farm tracks it would probably be fine (although it might be the next day before anyone came along to check the animals!) - not to be pessimistic but I don't fancy lying out there with hypothermia! ;)
There are some disadvantages to having horses in a lovely but remote area (they are 2 miles off the road!) but the advantages are enormous :D
3rd Jan 2003, 02:29 PM
i much prefer hacking in company - petal is quite spooky on her own, and it doesn't make for a relaxing ride when you're constantly having to sit on 3 foot leaps in the air! i also worry about the safety - i always carry a phone, but there's often no reception, and it wouldn't help if i was knocked out. so hacking in company for me - time for a good gossip and settign the world to rights!
3rd Jan 2003, 07:48 PM
I prefer to go out on my own, or with a friend to act as nanny. I get nerves with a lot of people, stems from way back-riding school horses. They know exactly where the gallop is, and I don't, or the terrain. So whoppee, we're off, no thank you, not me, I don't like being carted. L
4th Jan 2003, 04:29 AM
What you said about horse-time being better than any other kind of 'escape' if you will, really hit home with me. Nothing has had the impact that riding has had on my sense of well-being and my confidence. That may sound completely goofy, but I always wanted to ride, but for a host of reasons, didn't start til I was 40. (42 now..can't believe it, but there you are!)
Even after a lesson where I don't feel I did well, or when frustrated by my own inexperience or lack of confidence, I always, always feel better after riding. Friends have even remarked on my appearance during and after my rides. I tend to look stupidly happy.
I don't--as you all say--hack out alone though. I don't own my own horse, don't know the trails that well yet, and find that it's probably much safer for me to be in a group. That said, I do often get practice time in where I ride solo on a Sunday morning in the indoor or outdoor ring. I love those times.
anuvb, I love how you put it: that it's better than all those self-help books and mags...and that's so true! I talk it over with a friend, how 'zen' riding can be, and how it helps quiet my mind (and my overactive mouth!) and it's great.
I do however, get a lot out of going out with a group. Friends encourage me, push me to loosen up, to challenge myself and really to trust my abilities a little more. They coach me and we still get to have that sense of 'alone time' with our horses and with the outdoors. And sometimes you really DO want to share that wonder that you experience as you look around you while on horseback and smile inside realizing you are getting to do that thing you always wanted to do!
I really did go on...but you guys inspired me!
4th Jan 2003, 06:00 AM
I really enjoy hacking out alone, its really relaxing, you dont have to worry about much at all.
But I mainly hack out alone because I have such a different time that I ride at than anyone else that I know.
Its fun!! Plus if you feel like going for a canter for example, you can go off and dont have to check with anyone else first etc
4th Jan 2003, 07:54 PM
I love hacking out on my own. I have only managed to go out on my own since the summer, when I got over my extreme loss of confidence. As I ride a pony & the other 2 ladies ride horses we often cannot keep up with them plus my little 'star' of a pony is elderly & I like him to go at his own pace. Often my friends go out for long hacks & sometimes my pony doesn't like that.
you are so right, time riding is a wonderful therapy. Also time spent in their company is also wonderful therapy!! When I used to go riding once a week I used to get so excited I used to have a severe headaches afterwards!
4th Jan 2003, 09:15 PM
I don't always hack out alone, there is another horse I go out with from time to time, but usually it's just me and Ri. Our hacking is mostly woods and bridleways so very pretty and peaceful, it's quality time away from everything.
Rio's very good out alone and though she might get tense about things sometimes isn't spooky. She also seems very curious about everything and will often stop to have a look at something different or new, we can end up having quite a conversation:)
I do like going out in company too, but there's nothing to beat being out alone with a little comfy cob on a sunny morning exploring the countryside.
4th Jan 2003, 10:22 PM
hacking out alone and with others is awsome. i like being alone because of the quietness, its just you, you don't have to worry about riders who are braver or less braver than yourself.
i love to talk, im a talker, hacking out with others is fun expecailly with new people you can talk :) at camp we sing our riding staff song proudly and loudly (the horses get used to it pretty fast lol)
5th Jan 2003, 11:06 PM
Whilst assuming that we are all adults here I think it should be emphasised that children and young people should NOT hack out alone. Apart from the danger of accidents occuring, a child off this yard was badly frightened by an "exhibitionist" while riding on a bridle path during the summer and a friend's daughter in another area has been physically threatened by a motorist - fortunately, another motorist spotted what was going on and stopped to rescue her.
Having said that, I do ride out alone but my boy is big and, whilst i know he's a lamb, he's sufficiently preposessing to make your average lurker think twice. Added to which I'm an old bat who would have no compunction about taking her side-saddle cane to anyone who attacked her!
6th Jan 2003, 01:41 AM
Sidesaddlelady, my 17hh mare is timid but scary looking, and I bet she'd charge if I asked her to! (She's probably try to jump, but hey--they don't know that ;) )
I don't often go "hacking" alone, partly because my mares are so attached, but mostly because there are no trails near where the horses are stabled. To go hacking/trail riding we have to trailer there, and I do NOT like to haul the trailer without someone in the passenger seat! (Extra "mirror" ;) ) I do however like to spend alone time with the horses: riding in the arena or on the (small) grounds around the stable, grooming, playing in the arena or paddock. It makes me calm and happy, and lifts my spirits no end.
6th Jan 2003, 02:07 AM
I must admit one of my goals is to have my horse confident enough for us to go out on long hacks alone. We've worked up to short ones, although we still do have odd bouts of 'tall horse on tippy-toes' you know, when your 16.1hh horse becomes 17hh just because he's tense .
I do enjoy hacking out with others but there is always that question of 'am I holding them back?' or alternately 'bored with this route wish they'd gone the other way' or even just wanting to work on something while you're out.
6th Jan 2003, 09:15 AM
I agree that children and young adults shouldn't hack out alone, hence why I posted on the mature riders forum!
however where I am is in the middle of nowhere and I'd be surprised if anyone was to jump out! my horse can look pretty big and terrifying too, although if someone jumped out she would turn and run!
well after my post i went out on my own for a hack on saturday, nice day and all that and I wished I hadn't! Ciara has come into season and was spooking and getting up to her old tricks again. I did win the battle though, but it was scary, not helped by a coupke of girls galloping about the nearby fields with no respect for me and my young horse at all, makes me so mad!
6th Jan 2003, 12:17 PM
Originally posted by anuvb
I think some people up at the yard think I am a bit of a loner as I am too busy around my horse to get involved in gossip and news - which couldn't be further from the truth.
Ho hum. :D
Realised that what I typed could make me look like I get stuck in all the gossip at the yard. Would like to point out that I didn't mean that! LOL
Sidesaddlelady - totally agree with you but it is such a shame that we all have to think like this these days. When I was a kid my Mum used to let me hack out all over the place on my own as long as it wasn't too far and that I told exactly how long I'd be and which route I used to go. If I went out with friends we'd take picnics and so on. I feel so sad that when the day somes I know I probably won't ever be able to let my kids do that.....
...Oh and that cane/crop thing - also very useful with yappy dogs!
6th Jan 2003, 12:51 PM
I guess I just enjoy hacking :D . I have only had my horse since the late summer so I dont go out much alone, hes green spooky and only 6 so we keep it short when we do our own thing. However I come from a yard where mostly they dont hack so its just me and another Livery who go out. We are lucky that our horses get on and are pretty fit. We try to get out at Weekends as we both work and school/lunge most nights to keep them fit for longer hacks and pub rides when the weather permits. I am lucky I guess that we both ride to the same standard so enjoy a good fast canter or gallop with occasional jump etc .I have to say I probably like to hack in a pair its good to have a good chat and obviously its a lot safer. Roll on the Spring :D
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