Tonka Wants To Fly

By Terry Golson

Yesterday Tonka and I had our fifth jumping lesson. Outside it was miserable. Sleet was pelting down. He’d been standing in his stall all morning. So we did a warmup walk for fifteen minutes, followed by a good trot,

and then we trotted and cantered over a few ground rails. Now we were ready to jump.

We’re new at this. The cross-rail is small. Tonka took it in fine form. The poles in front and after set him up for success. It clues him in as to where to take off.


If Tonka comes in too slow, he has to take off a tad far from the jump.


He’s got the scope to compensate for this beginner’s error.


However…. Tonka learned that he likes this feeling of flying. So he decided that he would jump big. Just for fun. He did it again. And again. He wants to soar.


At one point I wasn’t pleased with the quality of his trot so instead of heading to the jump, I kept him on the circle. Tonka threw a fit! He flicked his tail, tossed his nose into the air and gnashed his teeth.


I told him that having a snit would not give him more jumping time and sent him forward. He trotted on, adjusted his attitude, and I said Thank you. We can jump now. Look how happy he is about that!


He even flew at an appropriate altitude.

Today we’ll be doing just a relaxing and long walk (the horses are still inside, the ground is a sheet of ice.) We’ll see what Tonka thinks about that!

6 thoughts on “Tonka Wants To Fly

  • Shannon

    I love your Tonka adventures and the photos you post. There are so many ways my mare is like Tonka. She’s built a little like him and will never be able to do high level dressage. She likes to jump but was rushy so it’s been a slow process of building her confidence so she doesn’t have to take off and go dangerously flat out over the fences. She really seems to enjoy it, now that she’s settling down. However she’s coming back from a navicular issue (Yay!) and I don’t know how much jumping we will be able to do, plus we don’t have any jumping trainers or shows within three hours of where I love. 🙁 But we’ll see. She’s made a remarkable recovery in the last few months., so fingers crossed we can do little jumps for fun.

  • Daisy

    Great to see Tonka so energetic at jumping ! such a beautiful sight and you are truly a winning pair just when you thought you were in for a more leasure period at this time LOL ! Life is full of happy surprises; happy returns to your *wings*

  • John Schaller

    Love the energy and balance in those photos! Thanks for sharing this part of your journey with Tonka.

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