New Year’s Day hack tradition at Old Orchard Farm, photo by Cathy Wessels

Cathy Wessels was kind enough to send us an article about the New Year’s Day hack tradition at Old Orchard Farm, outside of Toronto with some pictures from the hack. Love it!! What a fun way to start the year!!!

New Year’s Day Tradition

A long time tradition at Old Orchard Farm, outside of Toronto, Ontario is the New Year’s Day Hack.  Linda Hale, owner and coach at Old Orchard doesn’t often get a chance to ride herself, so she started this tradition 20 years ago to make sure that she got on a horse at least once every year (grin).  Happily, she does end up in the saddle more often these days and the New Year’s day tradition continues.

We had a glorious day on January 1, 2013.  The sun shone, the temperature was a bit below zero, there was very little wind and just enough snow to allow for decent footing in the fields around the back of the farm.  Fifteen riders mounted up in the arena and headed out to enjoy the bright day and chance to ride outside of the arena!

Sterling at the gallop, photo by Cathy Wessels

Ponies for a gallop, photo by Cathy Wessels

Heading home, photo by Cathy Wessels

The horses were well behaved for the most part.  After the Christmas break, a few of the school horses had a little more energy than was necessary and even the ones who have been ridden consistently during the holidays got a little excited up the final hill on the way home.  After a half hour walk around the fields a few daredevils decided to go for a fast gallop while some voted to get off and walk back to the barn voluntarily rather than risk an involuntary dismount!

What a fantastic way to start off 2013!