Endurance riders. We’re an interesting breed to shop for. We don’t follow trends or fashions the way the show ring does; once we find something that is functional and works well, we tend to stick with it. That said, we still manage to accumulate a lot of gear along the way…some of it necessary, some of it a fun indulgence.
That being said, gift cards are always a safe bet. Places like Riding Warehouse and The Distance Depot specialize in tack and gear for distance riders, so there’s a good chance that whatever esoteric items we have on our own personal wish lists can be found at one of those places. Gift cards are an especially good option if you don’t know details like size and color.
A lot of my 2015 gift guide still would be applicable…and here’s my miscellaneous round-up for 2017 ideas.
Tubtrugs buckets. Super-versatile, and come in a huge array of sizes and colors. They’ve got everything from vet check-sized feed pans to huge tubs suitable for water or as a muck bucket. I’ve got one of the medium-sized ones that gets used for everything from tack washing to a laundry basket. They’re easy to find on Amazon. I’m partial to this funky “Jelly Bean” pattern in particular but they’ve got just about every color imaginable to match whatever the horse’s barn colors are.
On that same note, this Tubtrugs Cesto strainer bin would be great for things like washing tack or washing and storing hoof boots.
German Horse Muffins look like an intriguing offering for spoiled ponies. I’m just about out of horse cookies, so these might end up being a special treat under the Christmas tree this year. (Yes, I buy my animals presents. Doesn’t everybody? ;))
Tucked Away Ranch “Mai Packs” are the successor to SnugPax of old, with the same materials, designs, and quality. They have numerous styles designed for a variety of saddle types, and a wide array of colors.
As soon as the weather starts getting cooler, I immediately start grabbing for these quarter-zip shirts. This particular one is Kerrits but I’ve got a variety of them that I like. Good example of “doesn’t have to be horse-specific to work for a horse person” such as this Under Armour one.
Hydration packs. Popular with bikers, hikers, and trail runners, hydration packs are starting to see a little more use with horseback riders. And they’ve come a long way from the basic Camelbak of old. The one pictured above is the Ultimate Direction Ultra Vesta, and is my pack of choice for running and riding. With as much catch riding as I’ve been doing, I don’t always know what the saddle set-up will be like, so this allows me to carry all my water and stuff directly on my person, and not have to worry about if the saddle set-up will allow me to bring enough water, etc. As a bonus, I drink way better when I don’t have to rummage for a water bottle.
So I’m a bit weird. I love grooming stuff. Especially high-quality brushes. Call it a throwback to my show ring days, but I can’t not do a thorough grooming job before I ride. Plus, I love pony pampering/spa days.
Leg wraps. Everything from the basic Toklat neoprene splint and ankle boots above to the fancy Majyk Equipe type. There’s a certain sentimentality value for me, because my very first Christmas with Mimi, my trainer got me a pair of purple Toklat splint boots, and I still have them. (Those Majyk Equipes in purple, though… *drool*)
Ride entries. While it’s one of the less expensive equine sports out there, endurance rides aren’t free. A little card saying “I will cover the entry for such-and-such ride” would likely be very well received.
Finally, horses and horse care always need time invested in them. If you’re looking to do something for someone, but maybe a little strapped for cash? A gift certificate offering to do something like mucking, feeding, or an overnight of house/barn-sitting. Offer to Crew for them at a ride.
And, of course, there’s the ever-popular “Dear Santa, I want a pony” wish that we never grow out of. In addition to the more grown-up-centric wish list items of trucks, trailers, horse properties, etc. So, uh, Santa..hint, hint. Hit me up for my laundry list of requirements if you’re so inclined. ;)