3 01 2013

Duke and Kreacher share an interesting past – and current friendhip. And if they could tell their story, it would be richer than I even know.

Since I started documenting the horses after the 2007 roundup, Duke has had a family (Raven and her first foal, Corona) just once – and for just about six months. Otherwise, he has been a bachelor, sometimes with a friend or friends, mostly alone. He seems to be particularly suited to “mentoring” young bachelors.

When I met Kreacher, he had Molly and Roja (likely mother and daughter from photos I have seen; elder Molly died in the fall of 2009). When Grey/Traveler stole Houdini, her daughter Two Boots and orphan Twister from (his likely son) Seven in the early spring of 2008, Seven stole Molly and Roja from Kreacher, leaving Kreacher to take Grey’s place in the “Bachelor 7,” as I called that group of single fellows. Kreacher was a low-man bachelor until early December that year, when he picked up the three beauties introduced that October from Sand Wash Basin: Raven, Mona and Kootenai. During an April visit in 2009, I found Kreacher, Mona and Kootenai, but Raven was missing; I found her – and her new filly, named after her Sand Wash Basin sire, Corona – with Duke. Duke had them until that fall. I found Kootenai with them one day, then got a report that Raven, Corona and Kootenai were back with Kreacher (and Mona), and Duke was injured. Duke nursed that injury for most of the next year. Right before or right after Mona had her filly, Shane (sired by Kreacher), in September 2010, Seven acquired her. She has been with Hollywood – and Shane – the last several months. Kreacher lost Raven and Apollo (their 2011 son) and Kootenai and Mysterium (their 2011 daughter) to Sundance the day before the roundup last fall, and Sundance still has the two mares and Mysterium and Raven’s and Kreacher’s 2012 colt, Skywalker (Apollo became a bachelor at the tender age of 1 and has been with Hayden and Tenaz since).

Are you still with me? 🙂

After Kreacher lost his band, he found and started trailing (at a distance originally) Duke, who sometimes was alone and sometimes was with other bachelors. These two apparently have adopted a “forgive and forget,” “together is better than alone” attitude and almost always can be seen together. Duke likely is in the 15-plus-year-old category, and Kreacher probably is around 10-12 or so.

When I saw them the other day on my way out of the basin, it was too perfect an opportunity not to stop and say hello.

Kreacher and Duke above Spring Creek Canyon.

That Kreacher is such a lover.

Kreacher and Duke above Spring Creek Canyon.

Behind them is a wall of Spring Creek Canyon. They drank from a little open hole of water down in the bottom.

Kreacher and Duke above Spring Creek Canyon.

Such handsome wild faces!

Kreacher and Duke above Spring Creek Canyon.

Kreacher definitely is not shy about public displays of affection – and he’s the more demonstrative of the two.

Fuzzy and fit and well-equipped for winter! I love seeing these boys together. Though I can’t help but remember the strife they once caused each other, now what I think about most is their enduring friendship.



6 responses

3 01 2013

Whew. That was a lot to digest.

3 01 2013
Pat Amthor

I am so glad you have the information and the desire to keep the past alive for all of us. The pictures of the two of them are so distinct. Sweet!

3 01 2013

Friendship…something I could not do without. The bonds we’ve formed because of this magnificent herd are something I’ll cherish always.

3 01 2013

Made my day! Adorable!

4 01 2013
Karen Schmiede

How cute they are.

5 01 2013
Lynn and Kathy

Love this sequence of photos! Especially very happy that Duke has found a “real buddy.” Well done, great story! Thanks.

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