Stolen horse found!

30 12 2009

A holiday success story! The palomino mare I recently posted about has been found and reunited with her owners! Thanks to members of both the Four Corners and Mesa Verde Back Country Horsemen for the news!

Amy Wollert sent me a message last evening saying that whoever took her horse got scared and dumped the mare off on a county road near Eads, CO. All’s well. I’m positive that the amount of emails circulating by everyone (including you) put the fear into the thief. So, hooray for everyone who helped! What a great new year’s present for the Wollerts—and the horse”

Merry Christmas

24 12 2009

I wish all of you a very merry Christmas. May your lives be blessed in all ways by the horses you know … and those you know from afar … in 2010.

‘Don’t Take My Home’

24 12 2009

Don’t miss this beautiful and moving video set to incredible music – photos by Pam Nickoles, music by Mary Ann Kennedy. A heartfelt plea for our mustangs.

Bad news from Nevada

24 12 2009

“They said the population in the five Calico herd management areas is three times what the range can handle.”

Too bad the article doesn’t say anything about all the cattle grazing that range.

Stolen horse

24 12 2009

This isn’t a mustang, but it is in Colorado, and the hope is that the more coverage, the better the chance these folks will get their mare back.

Forwarded to me by one of our Wild Bunch group:

Please be on the alert for this palomino mare, recently stolen from Wiley, CO. To make sure this was not an internet hoax, I spoke directly with Amy about it—the horse is a good roping horse, known on the circuit in that area, so Amy believes that the thief is someone who knows the horse or has seen her compete. Ropers travel great distances, so please spread this information and see if we can’t help bring the mare home for Christmas.

Please contact Amy or Brandon, information listed below:

9 year old palomino mare stolen from my house in Wiley, Colorado.  She is a dark yellow. Branded lazy D or W on left front shoulder, freeze brand.  Blaze face, 2 hind pastern markings and wire cut on left rear cannon.  If you have seen her or have any info please contact me at 719-660-9389 or Brandon at 719-688-2357
Amy Wollert

Sand Wash Basin blog

23 12 2009

I’m so excited to alert readers to a new blog that follows the wild horses of Sand Wash Basin, in northwestern Colorado.

Nancy Roberts lives in the area and visits often (check out her pictures of the horses in the snow). What a great new resource! She also adopted a colt after the 2008 roundup, so hopefully we’ll get to follow his progress as well! 🙂

Welcome to blogging, Nancy!

Snow stomp

17 12 2009

The desert is snow-bound. The ponies are as adapted as you might imagine, very fuzzy and rolling with the seasons. However, despite the water in frozen form all around them, at least some still prefer the liquid form and worked hard to get it from a little hoofprint puddle melted on the edge of the Flat Top pond.

The cattle are in now, of course, and though most don’t seem to have ventured far from their entry point – all across the northwest hills – a handful have made it to the finger hills. It’s easy enough to differentiate them from horses, but my eyes – first seeing dark specks in the distance – want to see horses.

From the top of the switchbacks above Slickrock, I was surprised to see nearly the whole upper portion of Disappointment brown and seemingly devoid of snow. Where the snow line seemed to start was back against the eastern ridge – above the basin – to my mind, at least, the valley’s heart. The snow was less than I expected but still significant – the snow was more than the mud. It made for easier walking but not easy.

The first band I saw was Grey/Traveler’s band – oh what a welcome sight! When I first saw them, they were just dark specks, even through the binoculars. White-faced Iya was the first one recognizable … then Terra and Houdini … then the silver boy, standing a distance away, facing away … no Two Boots and no Cuatro. My hunch – and yours, too, I bet – was later confirmed, but first I walked down the ridge to see whether Grey was looking at them around the end where I couldn’t see. Nope. I did scan the hills for Duke, but all I saw were bovine bodies.

Note the bits of hair missing. Probably from the scuffle that led to Two Boots and Cuatro going “missing.”

He gets this oh-so-blissful look on his face when he eats snow. 🙂

Houdini is weaning Terra from nursing. Terra is not happy about it.

Iya knows just what she’s going through.

Steeldust and his band weren’t very far away – close enough that I considered walking on to visit with them – but I could see that they were all accounted for (Aspen and Hook have gone off on their own again), and I wanted to find our little autumn baby. And from a higher vantage, I did. Lucky for me, going over to visit them didn’t require a farther-interior walk.

Two Boots and Cuatro are quite well … who’s that in the corner?

You’ve already guessed:

Chrome and Two Boots went to the puddle they’ve obviously started, and Jif went around the pond.

Two Boots bravely tried to drink right along with Chrome, which he tolerated for a little bit before he got irritated and started warning her – and Cuatro – away. It was disheartening to see them trying to drink that little bit of muddy water with all the snow around them.

He never actually kicked either of them, but he threatened several times.

The basin’s newest band. Sad to see my Grey-boy lose another mare, but I couldn’t feel too bad about it, watching Cuatro and Hayden race each other on the way to the pond. Naturally, Hayden won. 😉

I didn’t have my camera out when they started running. Jif was leading the way to the pond on the north-south road, and I was on the road to Flat Top. Poor Little was lagging behind, and it seemed like he was as tired of walking through the snow as I was. Jif paused once but didn’t wait long. Cuatro trotted up to Hayden, which seemed to infuse him with energy, and they started galloping in circles. Then they hit the straight-away, and Little H really revved the engines, sprinting for the “finish line,” which was mama, of course. He won by a mile, flagged his tufty tail and looked back over his shoulder to make sure mama and his new big brother witnessed his victory! I sure wish I’d been able to get pictures of that, but it was a blast to watch. I didn’t have the opportunity to see them playing again … they spent a good 45 minutes at the pond trying to get water.

Cuatro makes a face after eating a mouthful of snow.

Hayden thought he’d give it a try, too.

Here he’s checking out some mud on the ice. Only Hayden ignored the water – I have seen him nibbling on plants, but he’s still mostly relying on mama’s milk. The little water left at the center of the pondbed is frozen solid.

By the time the little misters interacted again, they were nearly behind Jif, and within seconds, Chrome walked over to block them even further. Sheesh. 🙂 Look how grey Cuatro’s face is already.

Then it was less than an hour to sunset, and I left the ponies, still trying to paw for sips of water. Rippled high clouds in the west lit up like the gates of heaven after the sun dropped below the horizon. To say it was stunning is an understandable understatement.

I was lucky enough to spot Seven, Roja and Ze just at the edge of daylight. Even from a distance, there’s no mistaking Roja’s rotund figure. She reminds me of a pony I grew up with … 🙂 The deer were out, too, and I followed elk tracks through the snow. I imagined, by the size of his tracks, that he was a big, beautiful boy. A fitting end to a day in the wild.

Wild horses of TRNP in ND

10 12 2009

I found this blog a little while ago about the wild horses of Theodore Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota and decided to add it to the blog roll as another resource for people who want to follow another herd of wild horses (and one managed by the Park Service as opposed to BLM). A roundup was recently conducted there (I think that’s how I became aware of the blog). The current post is about three young stallions that need homes. They were adopted but need more time than their adopter can provide – although it sounds like he might be a trainer and has put a great deal of time already into gentling them.

By way of introducing that blog on my blogroll, I thought the need for adopters for those horses was as good excuse as any. Find it here:

And hopefully there are some folks local to his location who might be interested in one of these colts (3 and 4 years old).

As far as our Spring Creek Basin horses, I’m glad they’re all mostly in great shape and winter-coated because we got blasted this week with snow and wind and icy temps. Because of that – and the roads in less-than-ideal condition for a trip that, on a good day, takes me two hours – I decided not to venture out to see them this week. More snow is forecast to blow in Friday through Monday. I miss them now; by next week, I might not be able to stand not seeing them. Keep them in your thoughts, though I think they’re probably quite well and happy with all this “fresh water” for the taking, whenever they want it … though it might be a little hard moving around and browsing! Also, think of all the great water our ponds – especially the newly dug ones – will be full of next spring!