Riding and horse ownership face a new set of seasonal challenges when the weather starts getting warmer. Rich new grass, shedding, mud, wild manes, and the “spring sillies” are all stumbling blocks to riding in the spring. Fortunately, working at SmartPak has introduced me to a wide variety of products that can help.
Here are my spring riding season must-haves:
- Deluxe Grazing MuzzleSpring grass is rich, so I don’t like to let my horse eat too much of it too soon. The Grazing Muzzle helps slow down grazing for this reason.
Spiral Curry Comb
I’m sure every rider is familiar with this old stalwart of spring grooming. It looks a little medieval, but it’s the most effective winter-hair-removal tool I know. In addition to its help with shedding, it’s also my grooming tool of choice for removing the inevitable and stubborn spring mud caked on my horse. My mare loves a good mud bath, especially on days when I have rides planned.
Aluminum Pulling Comb
Here’s another one that reminds me of my childhood riding school—and the blisters I got after pulling the woolly mammoth mane of my favorite school pony. Alas, there is a reason these things have endured, and that’s because they work. They’re also really cheap.
The Solo Comb
For touch-ups after using the Aluminum Pulling Comb (or for omitting it altogether—no judgment!).
Bogs Classic High Boot
Have you ever chased a horse that didn’t want to be caught around a muddy paddock in the springtime? If so, then you understand why you need a pair of reliable mud boots.
SmartCalm Ultra Paste
My mare is a perfect quiet angel most of the time, but every year after the snow melts, she comes down with a serious case of what I like to call the “spring sillies.” This is when she spooks all over the outdoor arena because she hasn’t seen it since October, throws a few good-natured bucks, doesn’t respond to my half halts, and generally behaves like a naughty three-year-old. SmartCalm Ultra Paste helps Ax remain calm during the transition to spring. I don’t bounce like I used to, after all.
Personalized New Englander Rain Jacket
You don’t have to be a New Englander to appreciate some stylish protection from April Showers!
Piper Breeches by SmartPak
Not everything has to be practical, so why not get some flashy new spring breeches? The Pipers are comfortable, cute, and they will totally jazz up spring schooling. I love how they look in and out of the saddle—I have the Merlot and the Navy!