Friday, July 2, 2010

Land Series, Cool-off Drill

Rolling Ridge

For today's session with temps in low 80s, I started by taking Laddie to a field away from the water and set up a short double and longer blind, using a BB for the double. The go-bird required Laddie to make a difficult angle entry into the end section of an area of high cover, the sort of picture we've been practicing in our Skimming Drill. The memory-bird was in thigh-high cover but otherwise undistinguished. The blind was diagonally across rolling hills and over a dry ditch filled with underbrush, on a line just outside the line to the memory-bird.

Laddie did nicely. He required no handling to take the sharp angle entry into the high cover on the go-bird, he nailed both marks, and he was responsive on the three routine WSCs needed for the blind because of the hills and the ditch.

Although I wanted Laddie to run the double to some extent as preparation for his Senior test next weekend in New York, and also as a practical application of our Skimming Drill, I also wanted him to be ready for a swim after running a land series in warm weather. That set us up for the Cool-off Drill, which we ran next.

For the Cool-off Drill, I had Laddie run another reasonably long land blind at a 30° angle away from the pond, then, using the same SL, had him run to an LP with a length of tape attached at the top for maximum visibility, to pick up a puppy WB, his favorite. The LP was right next to the pond, and was 60 yards from the SL, representing a raise in criteria from the two previous times we've run the Cool-off Drill. Laddie's tendency would be to pick up the puppy bumper and take it into the water to cool off before completing his return. Our goal has been to get him to bring the bumper to me first, and then I'd immediately throw it for him into the water.

Laddie performed well on this second series, also. After running the long blind, he took the easy line to the LP and grabbed the WB. I had no sense of it crossing his mind to go for a swim before returning the bumper to me, but he happily welcomed the reward — the bumper thrown into the pond — that he'd earned.

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