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Overcoming the Struggles of Winter Riding


As winter drags on, getting to the barn becomes increasingly more difficult. It’s dark out before I leave the office for the day, and the lack of daylight combined with frigid temperatures inevitably causes my motivation to plummet.
My horse is an older thoroughbred, and she gets a little wild after only a couple days off. She is also prone to stiffness if I don’t keep her moving in the winter, so it’s important that I keep up with riding even though I don’t have any immediate competitive goals. Fortunately, working at SmartPak has helped a lot with finding ways to overcome the challenges of riding in the cold months. Here are some of my favorite products that help me make it through the winter:

  1. Bradley Soft Shell Knee Patch Breeches by SmartPak
    Winter riding breeches are a must-have. There’s nothing worse than being cold in the saddle when you’re riding in the dark at 7:30 p.m., and having a nice warm pair of breeches makes me feel like I’m armed for battle.

    Bradley Soft Shell Knee Patch Breeches by SmartPak


    Sale Price: $57.47

    (40 reviews)
  2. Ariat® Brossard Tall Boot
    These are my favorite winter riding boots. They’re warm, comfortable, and look great. They keep my toes from freezing in the stirrups even on long snowy trail rides.

    Ariat® Brossard Tall Boot
    (112 reviews)
  3. The Bit Blanket
    This product is new in my winter riding arsenal this year. Warming up my horse’s bit has always been one of the toughest challenges of winter riding. Blowing on it, trying (and failing) to warm it with my hands, sticking it underneath my shirt, and all the other crazy ways of warming up a frozen bit are all in the past thanks to The Bit Blanket.

    The Bit Blanket
    (28 reviews)
  4. SmartPak Fleece Quarter Sheet
    This soft, fleecy quarter sheet keeps my older mare warm during warm-ups and cool-downs. It’s a definite necessity.

    SmartPak Fleece Quarter Sheet


    Sale Price: $35.96

    (163 reviews)

I hope these product tips help you make the most of your rides during the cold winter months!


Posted in Gear Review, In the Tack with the Pak

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Jen and Tally
Apparently I've been obsessed with horses since I was born, and I used to beg for pony rides on a regular basis. I started showing in 4-H, progressed to equitation and jumpers in high school and rode on the IHSA team in college where I also discovered the joys...

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