Driving accomplishments this winter 2018-2019

Chloe driving Chloe is my 13 year old Morgan mare.  I have been saying for a few years now that I'm going to teach her to drive.  I can now check that off my list!

Kit in marathonI took Kit on as a training project~future sale horse.  She already had a little training as a two year old.  Now at four we are building on her good start. Lad hitched


Lad is a 12 year old Dales Pony.  He was sent to me for driving training.  He is an accomplished riding mount.  We got him hitched and driving at the walk by the end of a month.  He will come back in the future to build on what he learned.

New 2017 80' x 160' riding-driving ring




The site work had to fall within the boundaries of our land not declared Vermont Land Trust,  and Current Use.  While this only left us 5 acres to work with, it turned out to be a wonderful spot for a ring.  Horses fall under agriculture in the view of VLT and Current Use,  but "training horses"  does not.  Deb Daniels Survey helped me locate this precise area.  She had surveyed the land for the previous owners.

My footing is locally sourced which not only cost me less,  ended up being good for riding and driving.  Anyone in the horse world knows,  you can never please everyone and footing is no exception!   While most people are concerned with drainage or getting too dusty,  my biggest concern was blowing away.  M & M excavating out of Chester did all of the leveling,  drainage and surface.

The pressure treated fence was put up in three days by a father and son team from Pawlet Vermont.  Mason Fencing.  Voila,  a dream ring come true!

Short term or long term training and boarding available.  125 acres of our farm includes vast hay fields and 65 acres of woods.  Over 1000 surrounding  acres of farm land,  woods and trails.  Quiet dirt road leading in every direction.  Pond Farm is a great location for riding and driving.


February has set many records as far as weather goes.  We have had extreme snow and wind  as well as temperatures in the 60's.

Somehow I am on par as to where I wanted to be with my horses in training.   IMG_2911 IMG_2921

Lyra has gone on her first trail ride with her buddy Topper.  At times she was leading the way.  The roads are ones she has ground driven and knows very well.


Pheonix is also being ridden around the farm yard.  I have no pics yet but will soon.  He also enjoys going out for long ground drives.


Jack has settled in perfectly.  We are ground driving every where and he is very bold.  I am continuing his desensitizing for having a rider and weight on his back.  I should be riding him by next week.  If my helper could be around more,  we would be hitching him to a cart and driving him down the road.  But such is life.


January in Andover

Winter has been great thus far.  Between training horses at the farm, I maintain a path for sleighing through the dormant hay fields.  Wind covers my tracks almost as fast as I can make them!  After a few go arounds of taking the neighbors for rides,  I signed Inky,  a Dales Pony up for the Sleighing Combined Test at GMHA.  We competed in two dressage tests and double cones courses.  It was ridiculously fun and we even succeed in bringing home a few ribbons.

 Cones sleigh Sleigh Ralley


Lyra my Cleveland Bay Morgan filly pulls a light drag on the track as she is learning the ropes to driving as well.

New Farm New Faces



Rebel is our new barn cat.  She was born at a dairy barn and is very feisty.  She chases chickens and plays with the dogs.  I just hope she doesn't snag a baby turkey!


Here Julie is advancing her bond with her new horse Shadow.  Julie adopted Shadow from Gerda's Animal Aid. I work at Gerda's once a week training and evaluating the horses and ponies that Gerda has rescued.  I take much pleasure in seeing and helping the horses and new owners have a successful future together.


Pearl is actually at the indoor Shaylee Stable in Chester Vermont.  Pearl is an absolute dream to work with.  A refined Thoroughbred that had a short career as a Turf racer.  She left the race scene mentally and physically fit for a new job.  Her owner Stacia has done a great job acclimating her into a slow paced lifestyle.  Pearl is with me to possibly learn to drive and to balance up her skills under saddle.

I am still "Sensible Horse Training",  but we have moved up into the world,  literally to the top of East Hill Road in Andover Vermont.  Jesse and I are going to keep the name of the farm as Pond Farm.  We feel it is like a boat and we don't want to ruin a good thing.


Here is Selig,  also from Gerda's Animal Aid.  He is fattening up on my pastures and continueing his riding and driving training.  He will be with me until he is an accomplished little pony!