From my previous post you know that I've come back to Siera who is a relatively young mule.
She has some great trail experience and is quite lovely to ride in the saddle.
After the other night's success, I decided this morning to put the saddle on and see how she'd react.
The most interesting and amazing things occurred.
Siera under saddle was quite good. She gaited out where I pointed her and remembered all of her commands.
There were small things to indicate to me that she wasn't exactly thrilled to be back under saddle.
When we got to a dirt pile, I decided to climb it with her.
Mind you not a large pile but a hard pile of dirt.
She climbed it.
Then immediately decided that it would 'eat her alive'.
No she didn't buck, she just turned and refused to go back on the pile by turning or backing up.
I got off and attached a lead rope to her.
The pile was 'sorta' okay. She stepped onto it but stood with nostrils flared.
To her credit she did not pull but stood as if frozen, eyes wide.
We worked a bit more and ended it on an easy note with 30 minutes tied to the shade tree while I had lunch with hubby.
After I unsaddled her, I thought...hmmmm.
I took her back by lead rope and without any hesitation she climbed with me on to the very top of the very same pile. She picked her way beside me.
In the very 'scary spot' where monsters had lain...was now a free dessert of long grass.
It hit me as I put her things away.
She is confident on the ground with me.
She is not as confident while saddled -- mounted or dismounted.
So confidence building will take place one itty bitty baby step at a time.
Mules are so interesting ... they can teach you so much!