New sparkles but I am still waiting on the new bonnet(s)
The long lining is great because I can really focus on transitions and cantering without him getting frazzled. Under saddle he starts trying to anticipate and gets nervous doing repetitive transitions, but on the ground we can knock out 100+ transitions in 20 minutes without losing quality.
I am slowly getting better at maintaining the contact at the walk. And the trot and canter are getting much better. He is getting stronger and stronger in the canter and it is rare to see him slipping in the hind like he used to do all the time. I really can't quite believe how much he has changed in the last few months.
Chunky caffeinated deer
We also finally got the squirrel back in the brain on the trail ride and he walked home totally normal and even stopped and waited for Cowboy fairly well. We went about six miles and climbed lots of hills and even went off roading. Stinker is slowly figuring out the whole weaving through brush instead of getting nervous and trying to plow through everything. He still barges some, but he doesn't totally lock up his shoulders and prevent me from maneuvering him around the brush.
Hill tops make for the best pictures
Things are looking pretty good, especially since I got a lesson scheduled for this coming weekend. I was very happy to get trainer's text first thing Monday morning asking if I wanted a lesson on Saturday. I guess we are starting to grow on her since we are on her regular schedule and she isn't trying to pawn me off on other trainers.