I've been riding several times already this year. But our winters are so mild, it's easy to ride most of the year.
I don't have any horses of my own, but have friends that have horses. I actually just went riding yesterday. It was my first time on this particular horse, and we had a blast. His name is Sparky, and he's a western pleasure horse. My friend bought him only a year ago, and has never ridden him - which I think is so silly. He was a beautiful tri-colored paint (my favorite) quarter horse - sorta small, like 14 hands. He does tricks, but my friend hasn't figured out yet how to make him do them all. All she has gotten him to do is open and close the gate, and nod his head to questions. He is suppose to know how to bow, but she doesn't know the ques to make him do it.
I loved riding him! But my musles aren't that strong, so I got bounced around alot. :) Now today I'm bruised and sore. It was worth it. He was a very happy, well mannered, spirited horse - who took me for quite the ride! He enjoyed running, and being trained in western pleasure, curled his head down low when running. It was like riding a little bullet!
And after the ride, I thanked him for such a good time. Then my friend took off his saddle and bridle, and he put HIMSELF back in the pasture - opening the gate and walking on in unassisted. :) He's actually for sale ($1,700), but I can't afford that. I sure would buy him if I could. I fell in love instantly.