Winter Riding Realizations


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I’ve rarely had to battle the elements in order to ride during the winter. For the first 22 years of my life, both my horses and I called Houston, Texas, home. There, our idea of a polar vortex was a few weeks of daytime temperatures in the 40s. And since I’ve lived in Kentucky, winters have either been mild or my horses have been in Florida.

So this year’s uncharacteristically brutal season has opened my eyes to some of the challenges of winter riding. Here’s what I’ve learned (and you probably already know):

A well-maintained indoor arena has been a riding must-have this winter

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Alexandra Beckstett, a native of Houston, Texas, is a lifelong horse owner who has shown successfully on the national hunter/jumper circuit and dabbled in hunter breeding. After graduating from Duke University, she joined Blood-Horse Publications as assistant editor of its book division, Eclipse Press, before joining The Horse. She was the managing editor of The Horse for nearly 14 years and is now editorial director of EquiManagement and My New Horse, sister publications of The Horse.

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