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The Seasons of Ranching

With the changing of the seasons come the "seasons" of Ranching. We are by no means done with "feeding season", but will soon be starting "calving season" which does mean we will stop using the teams to feed with. (I'll explain later why we stop using the teams to feed during calving.)
So... I thought I should say a little something about them before I move on. Being raised with teams and having them around most of my life you would think that one would get used to their awesomeness!! (And I'm going to use "awesome" alot right now because that is the only word, other than maybe "amazing" that defines these Kingly creatures!)
...BUT, how incredibly awesome these horses are, is something I will never take for granted. Unless you experience these animals yourself, no amount of my bragging on them will ever suffice.
They are strong beyond belief (especially when you put four of them together like the picture above), yet they are willing to do whatever we ask of them. They could easily refuse and what would we be able to do to force a 2000 lb animal?? That being said creating a bond of trust with these animals is incredibly important!
They are shockingly insecure, the smallest things can frighten these enormous horses, ( i.e. the elephant and the mouse) again they put all of their trust in YOU, that you can guide them through whatever the situation without harm!
They are incredibly gentle, although one stomp of their foot could render you handicapped!
They are also incredibly smart and LOVE a routine. They will deal with a break of routine, but like a 5yr. old child can be fitfull. Which can be quite amusing with the amount of character these horses have.
And character...oh my goodness they have such wonderful character! As anyone would know if they have animals or know animals each one has their own special being, but there is something to be said about a 2000 plus lb animal with the character of a 1/2 lb kitten! Oh how they melt your heart and warm your soul!
Everyday we harness and hitch 2 sled wagons with 4 horses per outfit. My husband heads out to feed one bunch of cows, my Uncle the other. Regardless of frigid temperatures we can endure here in the Rockies, they come back sweaty and itchy!! Molly, one of my husbands lead mares is always particularly ITCHY! She is certain that she itches way more than any of the other horses and if you are within her reach she will nibble and pull on your clothing (which can pull you off your feet) until you remove her bridle to relieve her itching ears!
They are AWESOME, and they take my breath away EVERY day! If you ever get the chance to meet one of these awesome draft horses, TAKE IT! They will brighten your day and lift your heart and you will forever be a different person.
The "modern world" always ask us why we still do things the "old fashioned way". Why not use a tractor where you can stay warm and is so much faster (which it's NOT faster especially when it won't start at 40 below zero), and I want to ask them if their tractor has ever taken their breath away!

26 Comments to The Seasons of Ranching:

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Lynette Grant on Monday, March 18, 2013 1:36 PM
Your work in out standing and I am proud of you. The only problem I have when I find a picture I would like to get , I never get a respond , it's like you are not out there, or I am doing something wrong, I would feel better with a respond . Love Lynette
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Niki on Monday, March 18, 2013 9:49 PM
I apologize for being difficult to get in touch with Lynette, I have sent you an email!

Fjell Grinde on Monday, March 18, 2013 4:48 PM
I totally agree with you, they are absulutely amazing! I love the pictures!
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Niki on Monday, March 18, 2013 9:47 PM
Thanks Fjell!! Hope you are well! Enjoyed your letter at Christmas very much, have been meaning to get back to you but as you know that didn't happen. Almost been a year since you were here, any plans to return?? Take care!

Bronwyn Burnham on Tuesday, March 19, 2013 5:33 AM
It is always awesome to see the different grazing landscapes around the world - such vastly diverse climates but the love of the country and the horses and dogs etc that we share it with always is always at the core! Beautiful photos
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Nikole on Tuesday, March 19, 2013 9:06 AM
Well said Bronwyn!! Thank you for your kind comments! May I ask where you are from?? Nikole

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