Tips for Fall Trail Rides
Fall is one of my seasons to ride. The colors, the brisk breezes, and the lack of bugs and humidity make this a fabulous time to go out for a long ride. Every time of the year brings its own set of considerations to a trail ride and Fall is no different. Here are my top tips for a fab fall ride!
Layers are the Answer when the Weather is Changing
Night and mornings are becoming brisker just as quickly as the nights are becoming longer. Be sure to dress in layers to accommodate for cooler temps in the morning followed by summer-ish temps is the afternoon.
Fear the Flying Monsters when Winds are Blowing
Falls changing temps often bring along breezes to carry horse eating leaves. My animals sometimes act as though the woods are full of equine eating monsters at this time of the year. Where we see glorious golds and scarlets our horses are seeing flying monsters.
Know how to Find the Trail when Leaves Obscure it
What last week was a clear trail through the woods may now be hidden beneath a golden carpet of fallen leaves. Unless the trail is well signed you might find yourself late for dinner if you become disoriented. Make sure that bring along some sort of navigation aid (I think a traditional map and compass is the best) and the knowledge to use it.
Beware the Bugs That are Still Here
The mosquito and fly populations are starting to fall and trail crossing spider webs are becoming somewhat less common. One insect that hasn’t quite wrapped up their season yet are the yellow jackets. Peak yellow jacket activity occurs in late summer and early fall as their food interests switch from protein to sweets (which is why you see them buzzing around soda cans). They are also becoming more aggressive as they prepare for a long winter.
Learn to Love Blaze Orange
Fall is ushered in with leaves of golden hues and jackets of blaze orange. With hunters in the fieldcomes the need to be more alert and informed. Know which trails are in hunting areas and also know which riding are closed to hunting. Regardless of whether hunting is permitted or not it’s a very good idea to be seen so brush the dust off the orange and wear it.
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