Sunday, July 11, 2010

USA Adventures - Part 3

My visit to Many Ponies in South Dakota was a delight.  What a colourful array of Spanish Mustangs!   Melanie and Marisa took us on a wonderful tour to meet all the horses. We visited the 4 stallions first and I was happy to see them all running together.  I was very impressed with how MP Will Rogers is maturing.  He has such a sweet nature also.  Blue Gambler's first foals were very imrpressive and I am eager to see how they mature. Mister Sandman's attributed alot of colour this year which was a difference to all the buckskin duns he produced the year before.. 

Mister Sandman - Bright Chief x Nina De Cenzina


After seeing the stallions we went out to a beautiful large pasture to find the geldings.  After a lovely drive around the property seeing some incredible views across the neighbouring properties, we found the geldings in the corner near the wooded area.  They put on wonderful display which allowed for some terrific photo opportunities.

The geldings and colts

The white horse in the back of this picture is a stallion prospect and he has the sweetest nature.  I spent a little while being investigated by him and then giving him pats and scratches.  They were all very happy to come and say hello.

Levi, Ceasar & Baxter

Then after sometime with the boys weheaded on over to see the mares and foals.  I was excited to see the foals, in particular a blue colt by Blue Gambler out of Bluebelle that I had seen pictures of.

On arrival to the mare pasture we were greeted by the very lovely and super affectionate mare Mirage.  This mare is amazing and has to be a part of anything that is going on around people.  She is adorable and I ended up with a number of photos like this due to her thinking she needed to be the centre of attention ALL the time and popping her head into frame.

The foals were so beautiful and I quickly spotted Bluebelle's colt and was VERY impressed with him.  I am keen to see how he matures.  He has a lovely shoulder and something about him really draws attention.  Here are some of the many pictures I took of him.

MP Blue Gambler x MP Bluebelle 2010 colt

The other mares foals were beautiful also and here are some pictures of them. 

Mister Sandman x Ghost Woman- red dun overo sabino filly

Mister Sandman x Butterscotch - red dun overo colt

MP Will Rogers x Dakota Dream Maker - black medicine hat colt


MP Will Rogers x MP Day Dream - blue/black  sabino filly


Mister Sandman x Sioux Queen - Red dun colt

This filly is a stunning girl.  She has such a lovely head and a sweet expression. Unfortunately I didn't get any great pictures of her.

Mister Sandman x Medora - bay overo filly

After spending sometime with the mares and foals it was time to thank Melanie and Marisa and head back to the hotel.  We had a fabulous time seeing the Many Ponies horses and were looking forward to meeting Lucy the next day at the Windcross Conservancy to see more Spanish Mustangs.  

Many Ponies have a number of wonderful foals and horses for sale.  Their website is

to be continued .....

Sunday, July 4, 2010

USA Adventures - Part 2

We hit the road armed with the trusty GPS and drove to Colorado.  It was amazing seeing how quickly the scenery changed from the desert landscape to snow capped mountains.  We spent the night in Durango then drove into Silverton and wandered around a few of the shops.  From there we headed up to Grand Lake where I had stayed a few years earlier when I was travelling around doing barefoot trimming courses.

It was as beautiful as I remembered it being and we spent two nights there awaiting the road through Estes Pass to open.  It was nice to take some time to relax, walk around enjoying the scenery and wildlife which included elk and moose.  We were still suffering from jetlag at this stage and the altitude was also taking its toll.  Despite this I enjoyed the Colorado Rockies immensely.  

We drove through Estes Pass and were amazed at all the snow and the beautiful mountains that seemed to go on forever.  

After a wonderful time in Colorado we then moved on up into Wyoming.  I was so excited to finally be able to see the Cayuse Ranch and meet Josie and the horses.  I spent a very memorable day seeing all the incredible horses that I had admired in photos for so long.  Seeing them all in person in their vast home environment was awe inspiring.  Josie knew each and every one of them by name and her passion and love for them was clearly evident.  

I was thrilled to be able to see Grey Feathers sire and dam and her brothers that were also running on the ranch.  Grey Feather has taken alot of traits from her magnificent sire I'Kkitsi Peta (Grey Eagle).  She moves just like him and has the same powerful presence as he does.

I'Kkitsi Peta - Injun x Little Pacer

After seeing the stallions and their mares and foals we drove over to see the batchelor stallions.  There are 18 all up and they are the replacement stallions for the herd sires that have either passed away or are older.  There are some magnificent horses in this bunch and I was excited to see them all.

The first group we came across were a friendly lot.  I was immediately drawn to a jet black colt that is a Payaso son.  He has the sweetest temperament and was loving all the attention.  Then we went on to see a 4 year old Rambler son and a Chato's Shadow son.  Josie informed me the Rambler son is for sale and I looked him over approvingly.  He is a very nice colt!

Rambler x Lonesome Oshoto (left) Chatos Shadow x Mountain Mist (right)

Next we came across a stallion who is a Chief Masada son.  He was calmly meandering alone across the pasture.
Chief Masada son

We then headed further up the rise where a group of colts came running towards us being pushed on by a handsome dark grulla stallion.  There was another lovely 4 year old Rambler colt amongst them who is also for sale.  He seemed to have an inquisitive nature and his coat had an incredible golden shine to it.

Rambler x Wyoming Dusk

Also in the group was a beautiful Seqouyah son who had the same unusual blue colouring as his sire.  He is a very beautiful stallion  with fantastic conformation and I am eager to see what he produces in the future.

The dark grulla walked up to me and stood allowing me to pat and admire him.  He was a powerful horse and I was really taken with him.  I eventually walked away from him to go and see two grulla stallions further up the rise.  I photographed the two grullas and walked in to start patting one of them.  He stood lapping up the attention and then suddenly took fright and they both bolted off down the valley.  I turned around to see the dark grulla cantering up ears back telling the two stallions to leave in a very clear manner.  He chased them down the little valley and then quickly returned and stood very proud on a rocky outcrop.  Wow! What a display and what an incredible horse.  I thought to myself had I not have seen Grey Feather this handsome stallion might very well have been coming home with me.
Azor x Lonesome Prairie

Next we left and went on to see the yearling and two year old colts and fillies.  There are some lovely horses there but the silver grulla caught my eye immediately.  He looked so much like Grey Feather and Josie confirmed that he was in fact her full brother.

Grey Feathers brother (centre) 2 year old colt

After we had seen all the horses on the property I thanked Josie and Jim and reluctantly left the ranch with many fond memories.

A few more pictures of the Cayuse Ranch horses
 Batchelor stallion

Grey Feather's dam - Prairie Feather with her new all white colt

Rambler - Chief Crazy Horse x Yellow Rose

A Rambler 2010 foal

Sundowner - Jack Slade x Esperenza  

Still looking magnificent at 22 years old!

The Cayuse Ranch have a number of horses available for sale.  Contact them for more information

USA Adventures - Part 1

I left Australia 21st May headed for the USA in search of a Spanish Mustang stallion to bring home to Australia. After a very rough flight (mental note- never sit in the tail end of the plane!) I arrived in LA and stayed there the night before catching a flight out to Albuqurque the following day. In Albuqurque, I picked up the hire car and set out cautiously trying to get used to driving on the opposite side of the road. My lovely mother had joined me for the trip and was kindly giving me lots of encouragement as I gingerly started driving out of the airport. Her tight grip of the door handle relayed how I was feeling at the time.

At the last minute before leaving Australia, I had organised to stop by and stay one night at the Little Cayuse Ranch in New Mexico. I absolutely loved New Mexico and it stark desert scenery. Looking around I thought to myself what perfect country this was to raise horses on. The condition of the horses at the Little Cayuse Ranch confirmed this for me. On arrival we went out to the back paddocks to see some of the mares. I was awestruck at the presence and beauty of these horses. The Spanish Mustang just seem to command attention and these mares were no different.

Desi and Silver Wind rushing in to greet us

The mares were friendly and eager for attention. They were in wonderful condition and clearly thriving in this desert environment. Tundra, the beautiful yellow dun with the bald face, held back and assessed us from a distance. She soon decided we were ok and came in for a closer inspection. She comes from Seqouyah lines and has that beautiful conformation he stamped on all his offspring. She has an ethereal energy and a reserved way about her. She commands respect without even trying and I felt humbled in her presence.

Yellow Tundra - Seqouyah x Misprint

I then noticed a beautiful roan mare named Shawnee Moon. This mare is a pure sweetheart.  She has a kind eye and the temperament to match. I stepped back and looked at her conformation. Stunning!!! She is a solid mare with a perfectly rounded hip and arched neck that allows easy self carriage. She followed us as we walked to the water trough, soft breath on my back, staying close behind me. She seemed to relish in the attention she was receiving and I was happy to oblige her!

Shawnee Moon - Azor x Lonesome Prarie

Then it was time to head back to the house and see the other horses. We pulled into the driveway and walked over to a yard beside the big barn. There were four horses in there, a dun overo mare, a bay roan mare, a chesnut sabino filly and a grulla filly.

I stared transfixed at the grulla filly and I think my jaw may also have dropped. She was absolutely stunning and her energy was light and magical. She was cautious and very sensitive but with a fire inside her that spoke of an incredible strength of character. It was immediate and without question that this filly was to come home with me. I did not even know if she was for sale at that minute but I did know that she was the one and never once faultered on that thought throughout my entire trip. She was not the stallion I had intended to bring home but life has showed me time and time again even my best laid plans will take a turn when instinct kicks in and the flow of my destined life's path steps in to take me on the journey that is meant for me this time around.

The filly's name is Grey Feather. She is cautious of people at first and likes to be approached quietly. She allowed me to stroke her face and I slowly moved down to her neck and gave her a good scratch which she seemed to enjoy. I watched her for a long time with the other horses. She was challenging Red, a lovely mare who was firm about her lead position amongst the herd. Grey Feather didn't back down and there were a few good scuffles happening amongst the pair.

Grey Feather - I'kkitsi Peta x Prarie Feather

I reluctantly left the yard and headed inside to get better aquainted with Donna, Jim and Sierra. We had a lovely evening starting with a wonderful home cooked Mexican meal. We spent alot of time talking horses and showing photos of Spanish Mustangs.

That night I didn't sleep to well as I was thinking alot about Grey Feather. I spoke to Donna the following morning about purchasing her and I then reluctantly left the ranch to start the long journey North.