Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Determining whether it's too hot to ride

Kate of A Year with Horses linked to this excellent post on Equine Ink the other day: How hot is too hot to ride?  The post gives an easy formula for determining when it's too hot for the horse to cool itself effectively.  I think I wimp out of riding long before the heat gets to be too much for my horse, but it's still a great formula to keep in mind.

The timing was appropriate — when Kate posted this link, our weather was just starting to turn.  For a couple of weeks we'd been having severe daily thunderstorms; the news reported that in the first two weeks of July, we'd already gotten twice the amount of rain we usually get in the entire month.  We always have a month or so of daily rainstorms during the summer in Denver, but it's not usually as bad as the torrential downpours we were getting.

But the tide has now turned, and instead of rain, it's HOT.  The temperatures have been in the mid-90s for the last few days, pretty much the first time that's happened yet this summer.  And naturally, our swamp cooler — a little portable model that we got 4 years ago or so — quit working on Sunday, the first day of the heat wave.  It really didn't help much, just enough to take the edge off the heat on days when it got up above 90 — our little one-story bungalow actually stays fairly comfortable until the outside temps get to about 90 degrees or so, especially now that we've learned how to manage the heat without air conditioning.  Box fans in the windows overnight to pull in the cool outside air, and windows shut during the heat of the day, actually manages the heat pretty effectively.

But there's only so much that can do when the temps get up into the mid-90s.  I hope this heat wave doesn't last for very long — I was actually rather enjoying our cool summer, even if it was a little stormy for my tastes at times.

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