Having a Horse on the Bit!

Posted in Riding at 12:10 pm by Thomas

“Having a horse on the bit” is an equestrian term that describes a horse that is relaxed, supple, and responsive to the rider’s aids. A horse that is on the bit will have its head slightly in front of the vertical, with its neck arched and its poll (the highest point of the horse’s head) slightly raised. The horse’s jaw will be relaxed, and the rider will feel a light but consistent contact through the reins.

A horse that is on the bit is a pleasure to ride. It is responsive, easy to turn, and moves with a smooth, flowing gait. A horse that is not on the bit, on the other hand, can be difficult to ride. It may be unresponsive, tense, or even buck or rear.

There are a number of things that a rider can do to get a horse on the bit. One important thing is to use a soft, consistent contact through the reins. The rider should not be pulling on the reins, but should simply be using them to communicate with the horse. The rider should also use their seat and legs to help the horse to find the correct frame.

Getting a horse on the bit takes time and patience. It is important to be consistent with the rider’s aids and to not get frustrated. With time and patience, most horses can be taught to be on the bit.

Here are some of the benefits of having a horse on the bit:

  • Improved communication between the rider and the horse
  • Increased responsiveness and obedience
  • Smoother, more efficient gaits
  • Reduced stress and tension for both the rider and the horse

If you are looking for a more enjoyable and rewarding riding experience, then it is worth the time and effort to get your horse on the bit.


Happy End of 2021, better year in 2022.

Posted in New Year at 11:08 pm by Thomas

It is ironic we are at the end of 2021 and their is a sense of deja vue with what 2022 will bring. I heard the news today that Betty White had died and I think that just puts the punctuation on this year and certainly not in a good way. I certainly send condolences to her friends and family but really she always came across as though she was everyone’s friend and I know I certainly feel a deep sense of loss with her passing.

Our thoughts and prayers also continue to be with our breathern in Kentucky who lost so much earlier in the month to the freak tornadoes and we will continue to provide support any way we can. As I write this storms are moving back into Kentucky that have the potential to spin up tornadoes and cause flash flooding that will persist into the start of 2022 so I hope and pray that everyone will stay safe.

I do want to wish everyone a Happy New Year. I do believe that 2022 will be a better year, not because I think the craziness of this decade will suddenly stop. As my son pointed out if you say 2022, it sounds like Twenty Twenty Two, like the second coming of 2020. The reason I think it will be better is because as human beings we are very adaptable and we will never stop fighting and we will never stop caring about our follow humans even when some days the news makes you think otherwise, in that regard, turn off the news and go talk to your neighbors and that alone will make for a better year.

Happy New Year!!!

Kentucky Colonel
Thomas P. Demond


2021 Lunar Eclipse 11/19/21

Posted in Astronomical, Lunar Eclipse at 10:58 am by Thomas

The moon a moment past max Lunar Eclipse @ 4:03 AM

The weather turned out to be perfect for viewing the near Total Eclipse of the Moon on the morning of Friday, November 19th, 2021. This was the longest Lunar Eclipse in almost 600 years and did not disappoint.


Fall Color 2021: Finally Arrives, mostly.

Posted in Fall Colors, Kentucky at 11:25 pm by Thomas

So the color arrived about a month late just in time for the leaves to fall off the trees but I did get a few decent pictures locally and have seen enough other pictures to say it wasn’t a totally disappointing Fall in regards to color.

November 13, 2021 Sunrise


Fall Color 2021: Maybe Next Week.

Posted in Fall Colors, Kentucky at 5:11 pm by Thomas

So the weather has continued to be warm and wet this week and that has seemingly slowed the color change to a crawl. The truth is the leaves are changing and dropping a little at a time so by the time the process really gets going there may not be many leaves left. The best colors that we are hearing about are several hours away in the Blue Ridge mountains above the 5000 foot mark.

There is a strong cold front rolling through tonight that will usher in more normal temperatures for this time of the year. We are expected to see several mornings in the 30’s that will hopefully kick start more color for next weekend. Of course wind and rain is not a good combination when you want leaves to stay on a tree but thinking the leave loss won’t be too great.

I snapped a few pictures late in the day with the sun coming through the clouds.

Kentucky Colonel
Thomas P. Demond


Fall Colors 2021: Start of the Season

Posted in Fall Colors, Kentucky, State Parks at 8:22 pm by Thomas

Its hard to believe its Fall in Kentucky given the warm temperatures, and though the temperatures are warm the days grow shorter and that brings on the amazing change of our Fall colors. Kentucky has been blessed with an abundance of foliage types that provide for a collage of colors and textures this time of year.

The warmth and abundance of moisture has slowed the process but it can’t stop it, so currently in Central Kentucky the colors are minimal and seem limited to our Poplars and Ash trees, with the primary color being yellow. In Kentucky the best place for early colors is South Eastern Kentucky where colors should be nearing their peak and it progresses to the North West over about 2 weeks, though based on what I am seeing the peak dates could be late by as much as 2 weeks. I will try and get out to a number of places to get pictures to document the change.

As for where to go see the colors, I am going to recommend a number of our State Parks for weekend getaways to see the colors over my next couple of posts. I will start with Pine Mountain State Resort Park because of its location and elevation should be seeing good colors. I will check with my sources over the next couple of days to get some more detailed information on the colors down there and see what the latest weather forecast is for the next weekend.

Kentucky Colonel
Thomas P. Demond


Your Point of View. Battle of the Parks.

Posted in Kentucky at 8:48 pm by Thomas

I have decided I am going to do some house keeping on the site and wanted to see about getting some others maybe interested in doing some feature writing. There would certainly be compensation and maybe a few perks though don’t expect a matching 401K. My initial area of interest is around Kentucky’s State Parks which I kicked off last month and intend on posting more from my own experiences but would love to have other people’s view points. Who knows, in this day an age it may devolve into a battle of the parks with hopefully actually getting together next summer at the winning park. Certainly hoping to get some takers to talk about what Parks have the best fall colors.

Kentucky Colonel
Thomas P. Demond



Pine Mountain State Resort Park – Part 1

Posted in Kentucky at 10:53 pm by Thomas

Pine Mountain State Resort Park opened in 1924 and has the distinction of being Kentucky’s first State Park. Though it maybe our oldest State Park the accommodations are not dated and I certainly would recommend it having visited it earlier this summer. The 30 room Herndon J. Evans Lodge is the primary lodging within the park, there are also 21 Cabins on the grounds as well. The lodge is situated in such a way that all the rooms have wonderful views from their balconies looking roughly south-west down the valley. The Mountain View Restaurant is attached to the lodge and also takes advantage of this view and seats 125 people. I also highly recommend the food, we generally had both breakfast and dinner there as we were out exploring at lunch so made other plans. I will save the recreation activities for my next post and will end this post with the general contact information and website.

Pine Mountain State Resort Park
1050 State Park Road
Pineville, KY 40977
Phone: 606-337-3066
Email: rita.jackson-edmondson@ky.gov
Website: https://parks.ky.gov/pineville/parks/resort/pine-mountain-state-resort-park

Kentucky Colonel
Thomas P. Demond


New Horizons, The Kentucky State Parks! Part 1

Posted in Kentucky, State Parks at 10:50 pm by Thomas

This blog obviously started out almost 16 years ago in support of Kentucky’s hosting of the World Equestrian Games and I have continued to push the idea of Kentucky hosting the games again should they ever be revived as a singular World Championship style event but I think its time to take a different direction, a new horizon you may say. The Kentucky World Equestrian Games in 2010 were an incredible event that I think show cased Kentucky in so many positive ways, but Kentucky has always been an amazing place and I am proud to have called it my home for nearly 40 years and so I am going to take my enthusiasm for Kentucky to hopefully get many of you to say, Ky WE GO as you plan your next adventure.

I am going to start with our Kentucky State Parks which I count as one of those undiscovered Gems that many people outside and are I say inside Kentucky do not know much about. Kentucky has 45 State Parks, which certainly isn’t the most in the U.S., but what we lack in numbers we make up for in family fun and new discoveries as everyone of our parks has something different to offer. One of the cool things about our State Parks goes back to the unique geography and ecology of Kentucky given its location on the North American continent. I am not going to go into great detail in this post on Kentucky’s geological history but it certainly plays a role in many of the great things to see at our State Parks. As for our people, my experience throughout life has been that Kentuckians are by and by a friendly people as are most Americans but you will almost have those bad apples that spoil the bushel, however the long term employees of our State Parks tend to be some of our finer individuals who find working at the parks to be rewarding beyond a simple paycheck.

I am not going to get to long winded (I know some of you are rolling your eyes at me saying that!) with this general opening overview because I want to get back to righting on a much more regular interval even as my life continues to be busy with a project I have been working on for several months that I will hopefully be able to reveal later in September. So stay tuned and for those that have been to our Kentucky State Parks drop me a line here as to your experiences.

Kentucky Colonel
Thomas P. Demond


Happy Spring 2021

Posted in Weather at 9:31 pm by Thomas

I know its the last day of February so most may think I am a little early but we have received more than 5 inches of rain today, the temperature is 60 and there is a Thunderstorm occurring as I write this with vivid lighting. Tomorrow is March 1st which is considered the start of Meteorological Spring. The grass has already started to respond to this warmer weather and the nitrogen that was put down by last week’s snowstorm.

Certainly we could do without so much rain this time of year, but certainly enjoying the warmer weather already. The forecast for next week looks very nice with lots of sunny weather and nice temperatures.

Everyone be safe as Spring Weather can be as dangerous as Winter Weather and we will just keep moving forward to better riding weather.

Thomas P. Demond
Kentucky Colonel


Happy New Year 2021

Posted in My Thoughts at 9:29 pm by Thomas

I started this endeavor in December 2005 with the announcement that Kentucky had won the right to host The 2010 FEI World Equestrian Games. It’s amazing to think that the amount of time that has passed from the Games until now is twice as long as the time from the announcement until the Games which felt like an eternity ago.

The lesson there is that time marches on and that is not a bad thing because as it does we hopefully grow in the experiences that brings along, like a lazy river that feeds all the flood plains along the way to the ocean. So even though 2020 has been a crazy year my hope is we all have gained some special kind of experience that will serve us well in the rest of our journies together.

So I want to wish everyone a Happy New Year, may your horses run fast, your health hold steadfast and your loved ones Live Long and Prosper!

Kentucky Colonel
Thomas P. Demond



2010 10 10 2020 10 10

Posted in 2010 Games at 10:31 pm by Thomas

I am not sure amazing is the word I want to use to describe the thought that’s it’s been 10 years since the close of the 2010 FEI World Equestrian Games that we all so affectionately called the Games and were so proud of. Ten years really isn’t such a long time, we actually had 5 years before that to prepare for the Games and we thought that was a lifetime to wait. What probably is amazing is how much my memory of the Games remains with me. The Games lasted 16 days, I was there 14 of those days, 12 as a volunteer so I really got the opportunity to be immersed in them. My security badge still hangs here by my desk as a reminder, Lyle Lovett was gracious enough to sign it after his concert closing night. I will always feel sentimental about those Games, and I still hold onto the hope that one day we can bring them back to Kentucky. I realize some of you will say that is probably a long shot, and I would agree, but sometimes long shots are the best kind.

Kentucky Colonel
Thomas Paul Demond


September 26th, 2020 Ten Years On.

Posted in 2010 Games, Memories, World Equestrian Games at 12:00 am by Thomas

Day 2.

My first day of volunteering was at the main gate leading one of the many teams there overseeing the pedestrian traffic into the park. The weather was about the same as what we are expecting over the next couple of days, but certainly cooler than today. It was certainly a great opening day for the Games and for my experience.


Authentic Wins 146th Kentucky Derby

Posted in Churchill Downs, Kentucky Derby, Thoroughbred Racing at 7:59 pm by Thomas

It was certainly a surreal day at Churchill Downs today for the 146th running of the Kentucky Derby. The weather could not have been better and the track was certainly fast so maybe its appropriate that Authentic, ridden by John Velazquez at 8 to 1 odds won the race convincingly in a time of 2 minutes 0.61 seconds over Tiz The Law.

It marks trainer Bob Baffert’s 6th Derby win though the day wasn’t without incident for him with one of his other horses, Thousand Words scratched after he reared up and went over backward in the paddock stalled and hit his head which is an automatic scratch by track vets. Then after the race, while they were putting the Roses on Authentic he spun and knocked Bob Baffert to the ground, but it is 2020 what can you expect.


Is rained-on hay any good?

Posted in Equine Welfare, University of Kentucky College of Ag at 10:59 pm by EPR

A lot of hay has been cut in recent weeks. The weather was good, but not perfect, as Kentucky weather is notoriously unpredictable. If you got some rain during haymaking, you are not alone. What happens to quality for rained-on hay?
The majority of the damage from untimely rains is the loss of soluble nutrients from the hay (the sugars). Even before rain damage, we lose some sugar during plant respiration that occurs from the time forage is cut until it reaches about 50% moisture content. Rainfall will extend the length of time that the hay is wetter than 50% moisture, leading to more loss of sugars from respiration.

Click here to read the whole article from the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture


2020 Second Act

Posted in 2010 Games, Covid-19, My Thoughts, Quotes, World Events at 9:16 pm by Thomas

The last three months have really been about figuring out what the new normal is and finding some semblance of solid ground from which to build. Some may say it is too soon to say we know what the new norm will look like, and I will agree I think it will be this time next year before we are sure what that looks like but I at least feel realistic in my belief that we can get it figured out.

Now, what does that mean in regards to something like the World Equestrian Games, as we have known for some time there was no expectation that we would see them in their same format as we did in Lexington in 2010, amazing how much difference the span of 10 years has made! With the economic fall out from the Covid Pandemic I would expect all horse events to feel significant negative impacts for upwards of the next 10 years. So the notion that anyone would broach the idea of trying to reconstitute an event on the scale of the 2010 World Equestrian Games before sometime after 2032 seems unrealistic.

In many peoples minds then, the World Equestrian Games are something in the past, never to be seen again, same was said about many things in human history but as long as a spark of an idea survives it can always be rekindled. I for one will continue to keep that spark alive because I will always believe in the power of the horse to prevail and to unite humankind in a way that is an in-explainable as it is wondrous for as Winston Churchill has been credited with saying, “There is something about the outside of a Horse that is good for the inside of man” and I for one very much believe that.

In closing I will say that I keep everyone in my thoughts and prayers and wish the best for everyone in these trying times. Please take care of yourselves and all your furry family members as well.


Kentucky Colonel
Thomas P. Demond

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