Sorry for the lack of posts! I've had three sessions with Halo since my last post, so I'll try to summarize what we did. The weekend before last I took her on a trail ride. It was my first time ponying her off Taz. I think poor Taz was a little bit annoyed having to mind the baby, but he was very good about it. We had a moment or two of naughty behavior on Halo's part, but she settled in fairly quickly and kept up with the group. Taz likes to walk fast, and apparently so does Halo - we ended up leading or being close to the front for most of the ride. Unfortunately it has been so incredibly dry here that the ground is splitting open. The fields are barely safe to ride in because they are riddled with cracks. We kept our pace at a walk due to that (and because one of the other riders was recovering from a recent surgery). It was a great opportunity to take Halo out, and I'm glad we kept to the walk.
The last couple of sessions I've had with her have just been basic longeing. The horses are back to being cooped up in their dry lots now that all the grass is dead, so she has a lot more energy. I'm also getting paranoid that she's getting overweight, so keeping her fit and exercised is as important as ever. Her legs don't need any extra stress.
I took some new conformation shots:
I think her neck shows the most dramatic improvement over the past year. She went from looking very ewe-ish to having a nice shape to her neck. It's still a little shorter than I'd like, but those bones are the last to fuse - she may gain a bit more length.
She's still noticeably downhill, but she's been see-sawing quite a bit over the past year. She'll never be uphill, but if she makes it relatively level, I will be happy.
She's well-balanced overall, but still light on bone in her legs. Her feet also do not look as good as I'd like. She's as sound and happy as ever, but these pictures are reminding me that I need to bring her toes back. It's getting a lot harder to rasp now that her feet are so dry and hard. I worked on them last night, but it's going to take a few days to get them where I'd like them.
Halo also looks almost like she's a tiny bit back at the knee, but I don't think that's the case. I think her ridiculously long pasterns are making her appear that way. She does have very long, weak pasterns, which seems odd. To my knowledge, that is not a trait present in her immediate bloodlines.
Any commentary is welcome!