Thankfully, Tarra has since ridden the loop with a fellow barn mate so she (mostly) knew the way. This whole time Roz had been taking a few random odd steps behind but he seemed game so we opted to continue on. Well....that was a bad decision. I told Tarra to remind me to never ride "the loop" again. It didn't go well the first time we tried to ride it and it didn't go well today. At the 5 mile mark I decided to get off Roz and walk because I just didn't like the way he felt. He definitely seemed to have an easier time with me off of him. The real bummer about this trail is if you weren't going up hill (and some really steep) you were going downhill. There was hardly any just nice, flat, easy trail. Then it decided to pour on us. By the time we had made it back to the barn we had gone 9.4 miles. Ouch! Thankfully my bog boots are pretty comfortable and we were walking fairly slow.
Roz seemed fine on the walk back and I pulled his bridle off once we got closer to the barn so he could grab some grass along the way. I loaded him right up when we got back and headed for home. Once at my house he wouldn't back out of the trailer so I ended up just letting him turn around. He was noticeably lame after standing for only a short time on the trailer.
After looking him over well I think it may be his stifle. It feels like something is "catching" as he walks. It's definitely not every step or anything like that but often enough that you can tell something is up, and I felt it the strongest walking up some of the hills. It's a good thing the pony has some time to rest now! I will give him a little bute over the next few days and I will see how he's doing. The next trail ride he goes on will either be to the beach with a lovely flat, sand surface, or to some easier trails around here. Either way we are never taking the loop again!
Sunday morning update: He is looking much better this morning. Yah!