Riding through a water-filled ditch is a Working Equitation obstacle that may be included during the Ease of Handling trial and/or Speed trial. This obstacle is not used for Children and Introductory levels.
During Ease of Handling, horses and riders may walk or canter through the ditch. At the Novice level, horses and riders may trot through the ditch. The judge will give a negative score if the horse and rider jump the ditch or if they refuse the ditch by stopping and stepping backwards.
During the Speed trial, horses and riders may pass through the ditch at any speed.
The water-filled ditch should be at least 1.5 meters (5 feet) wide and 2.4 meters (8 feet) long and no deeper than 0.6 meters (2 feet). There must be a visible barrier demarcating the edges of the ditch and the surface at the bottom of the ditch should be safe for horses. Course markers must be used to mark the entrance and exit. The obstacle may be framed with logs so horses have to step over and into/out of the water.
Execution – The horse should approach and maintain gait through the water naturally and without any hesitation.
For complete details about this obstacle and its requirements, reference the U.S. Working Equitation Rules, here.
Last update 12/31/2018