[ ] can riders mount from the ground?
[ ] is it possible to drink lots of water? to take a nutritious snack?
[ ] think sun screen, bug spray, removable winter layers, comfortable footwear et al
[ ] what about a cell phone with emergency numbers programmed?
[ ] go with others
[ ] tell someone where you are going, the route you are taking and how long you will be gone
[ ] carry identification
[ ] start with 5 minutes of easy walking and stretching before starting strenuous activity
SAFETY IN TRAFFIC
#1) avoid paved roads
#2) avoid parked cars
#3) keep to the right, horses are traffic like bikes
#4) obey the rules of the road, traffic lights, signs, police etc.
#5) be courteous
#6) choose your place on the road: the horsecanada.com/traffic page says to keep well off to the side of the road but the OEF conf presenter says to take your space, be seen etc.
#7) cross roads abreast, all together, simultaneously. ideally riding in a single file with everyone turning at once in a long straight stretch of road where oncoming motorists can see the horses and slow down.
#8) wear reflective material so be sure you are seen (esp at night)
#9) think walk on hard surfaces, max trot on narrow shoulders to keep more control and avoid danger of slipping; be aware of soft/deep footing with can rip tendons, pulls shoes or damage croplands
#10) make every effort to avoid potentially hazardous situations i.e. don't ride if loose horses are present etc. etc.
also drawn from www.gov.on.ca/OMAFRA/english/livestock/horses/facts
MEETING A HORSE ON THE TRAIL
trail courtesy tips for pedestrians, cyclists and motorists
from the http://www.otra.ca/
use the 3 c's
- calmly speak to the rider, to make your presence known from a distance
- if you are unsure of what to do in any situation concerning a horse, ask the rider
i would like this to include a photo series of all the different "caution horse" signs i have seen, because there ARE several different silhouette images. the one i saw on the road to old orchard yesterday looked like a SIDE saddle rider!
apparently you can have "Caution Horse and Rider signs" put up in your area at no cost to you (write Ministry of Transportation).