Yup! Leave the homeless person get up back at the farm (the sweat pants, torn t shirt, Redskins baseball hat, no bra thing!!! ) and spruce it up jest a tad. Round here it's usually polo shirt, jeans/britches, boots/chaps. And it's ok to use some bling! Or a loud colored square saddle pad! I like my one with stars on it!!! You don't have to dress like hunting thank god!! Have some fun! You can use horsie boots if you must. Any tack fine. But clean your horse cuz everybody's noticing!!! You see a lotta washed tails at these things!! Be sure to compliment the white horses & their tails cuz you KNOW their owners worked hard to look so pretty!!
Spagetti straps??! The NERVE.
I do shorts+chaps+tank top. I DO polish my paddock boots, but its nylon bridles and tank tops all the way during summer. Take flip flops to change into after riding for snacktime (IF the hunt is thoughtful enough to provide such.)
One takes such care to be proper during the season, I look at summer trail rides as, well, summer.
That, plus, as many wiser hunters have noted here and elsewhere - the fashion police are, in fact, wayyyy more interested in your manners, your horses manners, your interest in hunting and your general horsemanship (during the season, out of season - whenever) than they are in the exact shade of your black jacket or the tying of your tie. I live by a bit of reverse snobbery - most do.
It is still nice to look neat because you are usually riding across landowner's property. Probably not wearing red is also a good idea, as our staff has red polo shirts too, which can help even during a trail ride if someone needs something.
I love the newer fabrics for summer trail rides, that let sweat evaporate and all. Spaghetti straps and sleeveless is never a really good idea while riding, unless you know for sure you won't be in any wooded overgrown areas.
We have trail rides every week (central Virginia). That's how I got started hunting. I figured $15 is a bargain for nice maintained trails and jumping! Then I got to really like the people so I went out during cubbing season, and have rarely missed a hunt since!! (that was 2 years ago... starting my 3rd season).
If anyone is in the area, please contact me if you want to come out and join us.
CJMicro et al,
I know I know I know about the 'you shouldn't wear sleeveless while riding,' butttttt, I figure I'm going to be working outside all day long in 90+ degree heat, riding several (woods, open, all of it) and am more likely to faint of heat exhaustion than injure myself permanently with a twig scratch. :>) Spaghetti straps it is, then.
And thanks, X-rab (who, by the way everybody, is quite a goddess ....) for the heads up for my trail ride. Looking like possible rain but I'm going to ride anyway (barring severe weather) even if ODH 'cancels'.
I have, sadly, begun my sleeveless polo shirt tan. I WISH I could ride in spaghetti straps or something - there are some otherwise decent photos of me from a black tie event last year, lovely dress, GIANT rider's tan lines.
I always did tidy breeches, half chaps, and a polo on the hunt rides we went on. Pretty comfy and practical.
Thank you for starting this post! I just found out today that I'm taking a barn client's horse on a hunt trail ride this Saturday, and I was pretty clueless as to what to expect. Polo, britches and boots it is then!
Why do I work two jobs to support a horse I don't have time to ride?
I really, really, Really, Really, REALLY, REALLY, REALLYHATE BUGS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I'd rather sweat out and replace a gallon of water than be bothered by flying nuisances. I wear a long sleved shirt whenever I'm on a horse. I buy 19th Century "period" cotton shirts (mostly white) and wear breeches with either paddock boots and half chaps or M1940 cavalry boots (erroniously called the "Patton Three Strap Boot"). Cotton wicks moisture away from the body and I'm more comfortable than most of the chicas in tank tops and shorts.
I've yet to find a "modern" fabric that equals the warm weather performance of cotton or silk. The latter is tough to find but I've got a couple of old silk dress shirts that I bought off a sale rack a decade ago that also are very nice on hot days.
I'm into large baggy t-shirts for trailriding so that when the horse flies and deer flies land on it to try and bite me - they only get a mouthful of cotton...then they go get a drink of water, swell up and die!!! Well....that's my story and I'm sticking to it!!! I usually look like a homeless person down at the barn and frequently out on the trail....well...a homeless person with chaps on!!! .....a homeless person on a perfectly groomed, lovely, well behaved, fabulous horse!!! Yup! Thats my story too!!!
I normally wear a polo and breeches with either field boots or 1/2 chaps and paddocks if riding english. If I am riding a greenie western, I will wear jeans with paddock boots or western boots. We have some pretty rough ravines, so riding a greenie in an english saddle is NOT fun when they jump across a ditch at the bottom of the ravine or hills.