Wild in the Pryors

A Blog about the Pryor Mountain Wild Horses

Posts tagged ‘Pryor Mountain Horses’

2013 In The Pryors. A Year In Review.

Jasper and Grijala

Jasper and Grijala

Wow!!   It is hard to believe that another year has slipped away!  Thank you all for supporting my blog and facebook page.  I truly feel blessed in so many ways.

2014 looks to be a great year and I am looking forward to spending many 24/7 days with the wild ones.  In July alone of this next year, I will be spending 23 of 30 days on the mountain.  While it will be hard to leave my family, it will be incredible to spend that many days with the horses and share them with people that have never seen them before.

In August, beside my camping tours, I will be guiding a trip for some Natural Horsemanship Students from U OF M Dillion, MT.  What a joy that will be, to share these horses with like-minded people.  I can’t wait, and I feel so privileged to have been asked to do this.

There are a few camping spaces available for next summer click on CAMPING TOURS, to see those.

So let’s take a look at some of the things that occurred on the mountain in 2013.

Hailstorm

Hailstorm

January 2013

I did not go to the mountain in January of 2013.  Brianna did a great report on the Dryhead horses for then.  you can click on BRIANNA to go there.  The report gave us some information on the Dryhead horses.  Those bands seem to change day to day, even in the summer.  You just never know what you will see.

Shawn gave a couple reports, one for New Years day.  There was a bit of a change there.  Garcia had Kitalpha then.  It was great to see photos of her.  You can click on SHAWN if you would like to read that report.

January is the month where I do posts on “Who will have Foals this Year”, so stay tuned for that.  I also do a post called the “Name Game” where I ask everyone to suggest names for the new foals.  This year will be an “O” year.  Starting in 2000, the BLM started using the alphabet to name the foals.  It is an easy way to figure out how old a horse is simply by seeing what letter their name begins with.  So start thinking of those names.  We try to keep it somehow related to the mother or band stallion in some way, that way it is easy to remember what family they came from.  It doesn’t always work out that way, but for the most part, we try to stay on a theme.

Nye, April 30, 2013

Nye, April 30, 2013

February

I could not wait to get back to the mountain and made my first trip of the year in mid-February with my friend Anh.

The Pryors had received a lot of snow from top to bottom and even on the very lowest of parts of the range, the snow was 1-2 feet deep.

Sitting Bull, 2-18-13

Sitting Bull, 2-18-13

Lower Sykes, Feb.-2013

Lower Sykes, Feb.-2013

The snow made our travel difficult, but I was determined to find horses.  The snow was too deep to drive very far up Burnt Timber Road, so we hiked for miles looking for horses.  We were able to find a few bands, including Jackson and Cloud’s band.  Jackson had an injury and I left the mountain worrying about him.  These horses very easily have worked their way into my heart, so I do worry about them.  In the past I have tried to remind myself that they are wild, and have taken care of themselves for many years, but it doesn’t make it any easier NOT to worry.  That is just the person I am. I have quite trying to change that.

Moorcroft licks Jacksons wound.

Moorcroft licks Jacksons wound.

McKennie, Feb. 2013

McKennie, Feb. 2013

I got my last look at Two Boots, age 25.  He was last seen in April.

Two Boots, 2-17-13

Two Boots, 2-17-13

Our day on Lower Sykes was all hiking.  The road had drifted shut and we could not drive up it at all.

Lower Sykes area, February 2013

Lower Sykes area, February 2013

You can read more about my February trips by clicking on Burnt Timber and Lower Sykes

Sunset over the Pryors, 2-18-13

Sunset over the Pryors, 2-18-13

March

March brought another trip to the mountain for me.  This time I was able to make it almost to Cheyenne Flats with the ATV.  The bands seemed to be staying the same for the most part.  There were a few temporary switches here and there.  Santa Fe had Firestorm for a brief time, then he had Cloud’s son, Mica for a short while.  While I was there in March, I worried that Mescalero was trying to take Teton’s band.  I was glad I was wrong on that one.  But Teton will be 20 this next year, so it is bound to happen, a day I dread to see, as he is one of those stallions that I don’t think will take the loss of his band very well.

Mecalero and Teton spar with Missoula inbetween.  March, 2013

Mecalero and Teton spar with Missoula inbetween. March, 2013

Jesse James, March 2013

Jesse James, March 2013

Galaxy, March 2013

Galaxy, March 2013

Doc and Mandan, March 2013

Doc and Mandan, March 2013

April

April came with the new discovery of the first foal of the year (first found anyway), Noble.  Daughter of Helenium and Duke.  She was discovered by the NPS.  She has grown into a stunning filly and I look forward to watching her grow. You can read about all of the foals born in 2013, but clicking on 2013 FOALS

Photo by NPS

Photo by NPS

Noble, August 2013

Noble, August 2013

My trip in April came at the end of the month, where along with my friend Anh, we discovered 3 new foals. Nodin, Norte and Nye.  I never set out to actually find new foals, they just seem to present themselves to me, and each one is a wonderful experience.  A bit hard to put into words.

Nodin, April 30, 2013

Nodin, April 29, 2013

Norte, April 29, 2013

Norte, April 29, 2013

Nye, April 30, 2013

Nye, April 30, 2013

Anh and I braved the Sykes Ridge Road trip, to see two of those foals and several other horses I had not seen since the fall before.  One of those bands was Hidalgo, who had recently acquired all of Fool’s Crows band.  It was very much worth the tense drive, you can read more about that trip by clicking on SYKES.

Hidalgo and band, April 2013

Hidalgo and band, April 2013

Anh and I also witnessed a frantic Doc, when Cappuccinno took her just a few weeks before she was to foal.  It was heart breaking to hear his cries for her.

Doc searches for Demure, April 2013

Doc searches for Demure, April 2013

Cloud was dogged by Santa Fe and the young bachelor, Jupiter.  Nothing was accomplished that day or this past year, but with Cloud turning 19 this year, it will be happening soon.  Another one that will not take retirement lightly, I am sure.

Cloud and Santa Fe, April 2013

Cloud and Santa Fe, April 2013

Jupiter, Cloud and Santa Fe

Jupiter, Cloud and Santa Fe

Innocentes and Feldspar, about a week before she gave birth to Nimbus.

Innocentes and Feldspar, about a week before she gave birth to Nimbus.

Cloud, April 2013

Cloud, April 2013

May

The month of May brought the birth of six new foals: Nimbus, Niyaha, Nirvana, Naara, Niobrara and Naive (decreased).  Bringing the total number of foals born to ten, with nine of those still living.

Nimbus, August 2013

Nimbus, August 2013

Niyaha, June 2013

Niyaha, June 2013

Nirvana, July 2013

Nirvana, July 2013

Naara, July, 2013

Naara, July, 2013

Niobrara, June 2013

Niobrara, June 2013

Naive, May 2013.  Photo by Shawn Ivie.

Naive, May 2013. Photo by Shawn Ivie.

Lori gave us several great updates of the Dryhead horses, with one of the highlights being the sighting of Medicine Bow, who has become very elusive this year.  You can read about her updates by clicking on LORI, and DRYHEAD.

Medicine Bow, May 2013.  Photo by Lori G.

Medicine Bow, May 2013. Photo by Lori G.

June

June brought the births of three more foals:  Norma Jean, Nickel and Naolin.  Bringing the foal count to 13.

Norma Jean, August 2013

Norma Jean, August 2013

Nickel, July 2013.

Nickel, July 2013.

Naolin, July 2013

Naolin, July 2013

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June is also one of the most active and exciting months of the year on the mountain.  Weather dependent, most of the mountain horses have traveled to the top of the mountain and with it brings conflict and love.

It is breeding season, which brings about constant action, between the band stallions and the bachelor stallions.   The light of the day is long in June, giving plenty of opportunity to take hundreds of action shots.  The wildflowers are just starting to show their faces, but depending on the weather, will be showing them soon and fast.  It is a magical time to be on the mountain and I look forward to my first camping trip of the season this month.

Over the winter or spring, Garay had acquired Grijala’s band ( Kohl and Quelle Colour), Santa Fe was now dogging Coronado and poor Tecumseh was still dogging the band he had lost in June 2012, now Gringo’s.

Kohl and Quelle Colour

Kohl and Quelle Colour

Arrowleave Balsam Root flowers.

Arrowleave Balsam Root flowers.

Coronado chasing Santa Fe

Coronado chasing Santa Fe

Nye and Niobrara

Nye and Niobrara

Meadow of Shooting Stars

Meadow of Shooting Stars

Pasque flowers starting to pop!

Pasque flowers starting to pop!

Irial and Jasper

Irial and Jasper

Grijala and Inali

Grijala and Inali

Garay and Galaxy

Garay and Galaxy

Blue Moon and Isadora

Blue Moon and Isadora

Tecumseh

Tecumseh

Grijala and the boys

Grijala and the boys

Krueger Pond, June 2013

Krueger Pond, June 2013

June also brought some minor changes in the Dryhead.  The Dryhead would change like the wind this year, everyday seemed to bring about band changes.  You can read about those June changes by clicking on NANCY.

Lori also gave us a great update on Seattle, Merlin and Fiero.  Click on LORI to read that.  It is a rare sight to see father and son together in one photo.  Thank you Lori for that!

Fiero in back, Merlin in front, June 2013.  Photo by Lori G.

Fiero in back, Merlin in front, June 2013. Photo by Lori G.

July

July brought the discovery of two more foals: Nacer (deceased) and Nova.  Bringing the total count to 15 with 13 of those living.

Nacer’s brief life has a very deep meaning to me.  Born near my tent in the early morning of July 9, I will always think of her each and every time I am there.  You can read more about her by clicking on NACER.

Nacer, July 9, 2013

Nacer, July 9, 2013

Nova, July 21, 2013

Nova, July 21, 2013

July also brought the one year anniversary of Lakota’s death.  It is hard to believe that it has been a year.  I still miss seeing him and know I always will.

Lakota, July, 2011

Lakota, July, 2011

There was a rumor that Starman’s remains had been found.  But after I and Nancy searched the area throughly, it was not true, but ended up still being the remains of Cabaret and his band from 2011.  However Starman has not been seen, and so we must admit, that this great stallion has died, another tragic loss to the mountain top.

Starman, July 2011.

Starman, July 2011.

The remains of Damsel were discovered this month.  She will also be missed.

Baileys and Damsel

Baileys and Damsel, March 2012

A few note worthy observations this month were: Lariat joined Garay’s band for several days (only in the daylight hours), I spotted Seattle and also Corona and his band ( Dryhead Horses) up on top for about a week.

Hamlet with Seattle

Hamlet with Seattle

Garay, Lariat and Kohl

Garay, Lariat and Kohl

Corona and band

Corona and band

Corona band, July 2013

Corona band, July 2013

July is another busy month for the mountain.  A few more births, a lot of sparring and a bunch of bachelor antics!

I was fortunate to be able to spend many days on the mountain and Dryhead in July.  The peacefulness of the mountain after the day trip crowds leave, are amazing and something  I will never grow tired of.  I met several new people, many of those have become good friends.

The Boys of Summer!

The Boys of Summer!

Mystic Pond

Mystic Pond

Teton and his son Missoula

Teton and his son Missoula

Duke flirts with Sequoyah

Duke flirts with Sequoyah

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Jasper

Jasper

Noble and Naolin

Noble and Naolin

Chino, Grijala, Jasper and Custer

Chino, Grijala, Jasper and Custer

Coronado and LaBrava

Coronado and LaBrava

Kreguer Pond

Kreguer Pond

Noble

Noble

Full Moon on top of the mountain

Full Moon on top of the mountain

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Morning Star

Morning Star

Garcia

Garcia

Dukes Band

Dukes Band

August

No foals were born in the month of August this year.  Instead of new foals, August brought lots of flies.  They never really bothered me, but they plagued the horses, driving them into the trees for a good portion of the day, coming out for drinks at the pond and in the evenings.

It did give me a good chance to really get to know the range and all of the possible hiding places the horses may be.  I enjoyed many hikes and discovered things I had never seen before.

The days were becoming shorter, but the sunsets even more spectacular.  Each month in the Pryors has its own special feature.  Even though the horses were not visible all day long, there was still plenty of opportunity to spend hours with them each day.   But this is not always the case each year.  My August trips in 2012 showed me horses all day long.  Each year can be different.

During one of my days in August, the stallion Santa Fe would decide it was time to stop dogging Coronado.  My heart aches a bit of Santa Fe, I hope he can gain a mare again soon.

Duke

Duke

Rosarita

Rosarita

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Doc

Doc

Santa Fe

Santa Fe

Mystic Pond is almost completly dry.

Mystic Pond is almost completly dry.

Moorcroft and Mica

Moorcroft and Mica

Cappuccino ran with the boys one day.

Cappuccino ran with the boys one day.

Butterflies on some flowers near the pond

Butterflies on some flowers near the pond

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Gringo

Gringo

Gringo

Gringo

Aurora

Aurora

One of the hiking views

One of the hiking views

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Maelstrom and Niobrara

Maelstrom and Niobrara

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Manuelita

Manuelita

Baja and Bacardi

Baja and Bacardi

Galaxy and Ireland

Galaxy and Ireland

Galaxy

Galaxy

Chino, Santa Fe and Jupiter

Chino, Santa Fe and Jupiter

Cloud

Cloud

Docs and Irial

Docs and Irial

Nimbus

Nimbus

Norma Jean and Millicent

Norma Jean and Millicent

Gringos

Gringos

Garcia comes to check us out early in the morning on the way up Burnt Timber

Garcia comes to check us out early in the morning on the way up Burnt Timber

Galadrial and Beulah

Galadrial and Beulah

Cloud

Cloud

Nirvana

Nirvana

I also explored the Dryhead and Lower Sykes, discovering new things about both of those areas.

Mercuria and Morgana

Mercuria and Morgana

Hidalgo

Hidalgo

Hidalgo

Hidalgo

Kitalpha, Nova and Bristol

Kitalpha, Nova and Bristol

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Fools Crow Band

Fools Crow Band

Ceceila, Mato and Sitting Bull, August 22, 2013

Ceceila, Mato and Sitting Bull, August 22, 2013

September

September brought the birth of one more foal, Nawah, bringing the 2012 foal count to 16 (14 living).  My friend Anh discovered him on September 18. No-one to my knowledge has seen Nawah again since then,  I pray he is still alive.

Nahwa and Washakie

Nahwa and Washakie  Photo by Anh N.

Nahwa and Topper Too.

Nahwa and Topper Too. Photo by Anh N.

September also brings the most incredible lighting.  The range has become dry, but the light throws an amazing gold color, making the range look like spun gold.  The blue hour photos become more intense, the sunsets a deeper pink.  The days are shorter yet, making the daylight hours even more special.

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Jackson

Jackson

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Gringos

Gringos

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A noteworthy discovery that I made this month, was seeing several bachelors up on the high meadow (Skyline Meadow).  This is an area seldom used by the horses and it would be great if they were starting to utilize this part of the range again.

Bachelors in Skyline Meadow, September 2013

Bachelors in Skyline Meadow, September 2013

The weather can quickly change during this month, so keeping a watch on the weather report is essential.  Late in September this year, a snow storm came.

A look at the September snow storm.  Photo by Brianna H.

A look at the September snow storm. Photo by Brianna H.

I spent several evening on my trip in September with the horses near-by.  They felt comfortable to be near-by and graze and play, many bands intermingling with one another.  Many of them would remain outside my tent during the night, and I would lie awake hearing the sounds of their crunching.

Galena and Nye

Galena and Nye

Morning Stars

Morning Stars

Missoula and Half Moon

Missoula and Half Moon

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Limerick

Limerick

Manuelita and Dove

Manuelita and Dove

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Nickel

Nickel

Madonna and Meriweather

Madonna and Meriweather

Manuelita

Manuelita

Hailstorm

Hailstorm

Bolders

Bolders

Killian

Killian

Below are some of the great photos that my friend Anh took late in September.

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I would spend one day in the Dryhead this trip, seeing several bands including Bristol, Blizzard and the very pregnant Bakken.

Bakken, September 7, 2013

Bakken, September 7, 2013

Blizzard and Cascade

Blizzard and Cascade

Bristol, Nova and Kitalpha

Bristol, Nova and Kitalpha

October

October brought the last-known foal of the year.  Niña.  She was discovered the NPS, October 24.  She brought the final foal count of 2013 to 17, with 15 known survivors.

Bakken and Niña, October 24, 2013.  Photo by NPS.

Bakken and Niña, October 24, 2013. Photo by NPS.

Bakken and Niña continue to be seen and are doing well.

I returned to the Pryors late in October, just a few days after Niña was discovered.  I never know what horses I will see this time of year.  The mountain horses have left the mountain top and are scattered down the mountain, either on the Burnt Timber side or the Sykes side.  I always feel fortunate to be able to see anyone and my friend Jeannie and I were able to see over 50 horses.

I rented a wide-angle lens this trip and had a lot of fun capturing the vast landscape of the Pryors.

Jasper

Jasper

Hickok

Hickok

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Hernando

Hernando

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Grijala and Hernando

Grijala and Hernando

Naara

Naara

Cheyenne Flats

Cheyenne Flats

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Heading down Burnt Timber

Heading down Burnt Timber

November

I did not go to the Pryors in November.  There were a few updates from Ginger (Click on GINGER) to go to that post.  Nancy also had one update as well.  Click on NANCY to go there.

December

And now here we are in December. I did not go to the Pryors this month.   Shawn had one update this month.  Click on Shawn to go there.

So that is 2013 in the Pryors.  I want to end this post acknowledging those horses that are missing or dead.

1.  Starman, last recorded sighting:  October 2012.   Remains not found. Born in 1989.

Starman, June 2012  Visting us at our campsite.

Starman, June 2012 Visting us at our campsite.

2.  Prince.  Last recorded sighting, November,  2012.  Remains not found.  Born in 1993.

Prince, June, 2012

Prince, June, 2012

3.  Kindra.  Last seen, early spring, 2013.  Remains not found.  Born in 2010.

Kindra, August 1, 2012

Kindra, August 1, 2012

4.  Meadowlark, last seen March, 2013.  Remains not found.  Born in 2012.

Meadowlark, September 2012

Meadowlark, September 2012

5.  Two Boots.  Last seen in April, 2013.  Remains not found.  Born in 1988.

Two Boots, September 1, 2012

Two Boots, September 1, 2012

6.  Damsel.  Last seen in September 2012.  Remains found in July.  Born in 2003.

Damsel, September 1, 2012

Damsel, September 1, 2012

Thank you all for reading my blog.  If you want to read more about 2013, click on the Archives tab to the right.  I am looking forward to 2014 in the Pryors, I hope to see some of you there!

Sandy

Logo designed by Amber Bushnell

Logo designed by Amber Bushnell

August In The Pryors. Part 3.

Manuelita, August 21, 2013

Manuelita, August 21, 2013

During the night, we heard several stallion screams.  I say screams, because there is a difference between the squeals that stallions make when greeting one another or of the screams that bachelors make when sparring.

The last time I heard screams this loud and long,  was during the time when Grijala and Lakota were fighting.  They both ended up with some pretty good wounds, and in the end, Grijala took Lakota’s band from him.    It seemed to me that something was starting to happen on the mountain, something big.  Change would be coming.  I am betting it will be one of the former Forest Service bachelors taking a band.  If it doesn’t happen this fall, it will probably happen during the winter.  I hope no one gets injured badly.  I wondered if that was part of the reason we had seen Cloud and Cappuccino running with them yesterday.  Were they proving how difficult it would be for any of them to take their bands?

I was eager for the day to start so I could find out what was going on.

By the time it got light, the mountain was quiet again.  Not a horse in sight.  We went down to Krueger Pond just as the sun was rising.  Finding no one there, we hiked to the top of the hill above the pond.  I saw Duke’s band.  We hiked over and spent some time with them before they decided to move on.

Dukes

Dukes

Naolin and Graciana.

Naolin and Graciana.

Dukes

Dukes

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Duke

Duke

Miss Noble

Miss Noble

Dukes

Dukes

They were heading to the pond, so we did too.  We were able to watch several bands coming for their morning drink.

Manualita and Nickel.

Manualita and Nickel.

Maneulita, Dove and Nickel.

Maneulita, Dove and Nickel.

LaBrava

LaBrava

Dove and Maneulita

Dove and Maneulita

Nickel

Nickel

Nickel

Nickel

Rosarita

Rosarita

Rosarita

Rosarita

Rosarita, Polaris and Mescalero.

Rosarita, Polaris and Mescalero.

Horizon and Juniper

Horizon and Juniper

Tonapah, Junipter and Horizon

Tonapah, Junipter and Horizon

Fiesta

Fiesta

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Phoenix and Warbonnet

Phoenix and Warbonnet

Missoula and Teton

Missoula and Teton

Doc

Doc

Mandan (Malapais)

Mandan (Malapais)

We decided to follow the horses.  They appeared to be heading for the north woods.  We took their path a few minutes after the last horse left the pond.  There was no one in sight.  They had vanished into the trees.  I could see them here and there in the woods, but for the most part they were out of sight.

The woods here are very tightly woven with trees.  We decided to just let them be and sit outside the clumps of trees waiting for them to come out, like they had done in July.   They did not come out.  We sat there for several hours before deciding to head back to camp for a while.  It was the hot of the afternoon, and with the amount of flies around, I knew they would be staying in the trees for a while.

We returned to this area again at 5:00 pm.   I could see a few bands had come out of the trees, so we sat and watched them grazing in the slightly cool breeze of the late afternoon.

Jacksons

Jacksons

Jacksons

Jacksons

Gringos

Gringos

Gringos

Gringos

Tecumseh

Tecumseh

It was just a few minutes later, when we heard thundering hoofs running our way.  I turned my camera just in time to get a few quick shots of the bands running by us.  We watched several bands run by and straight into the woods.

Baileys and Celt

Baileys and Celt

Bolder

Bolder

Killian and Sapo

Killian and Sapo

Nimbus

Nimbus

Feldspar and Mica

Feldspar and Mica

Mica

Mica

Blue Moons

Blue Moons

Blue Moon and Halcyon

Blue Moon and Halcyon

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From there I looked up the steep hill and saw a beautiful sight!  All of the horses were coming out of the woods and trotting along the ridge.  It was so incredible!  The photos just can’t come close to capturing the feeling and sight of more than 60 horses running out of the woods single file.

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For the most part, it was peaceful.  Except when Bolder tried to breed Sequoyah.

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We stayed there for a long while, enjoying the amazement of the scene.  We left only when some annoying people with 2 loose dogs came and disturbed the otherwise natural setting.

Later that evening, just before sunset, we came back down to the pond.  There were just a couple of bands there tonight.  Most had watered an hour or so before and were in the north woods where we had left them.

Baja and Washakie

Baja and Washakie

Fiesta.  I never noticed how much his profile looks like Tetons until this photo.

Fiesta. I never noticed how much his profile looks like Tetons until this photo.

Fiesta

Fiesta

It was almost dark now.  It would be a full moon tonight.  As we headed back down towards our campsite, I saw a horse walking towards us.

It was Irial.  The scene reminded me so much of when I saw Lakota walking towards me, in the same place, just two years before.  Had it really only been two years ago?  It seemed so much longer.

Irial

Irial

Lakota, October, 2011

Lakota, October, 2011

Irial took his time walking by us.  He never left the road, until he was well past the truck that was in his path.

There was a sadness to him, or was it me feeling the sadness?  Just as he left the road to take a trail that lead to the pond, he turned and looked back at me.  It was as if he was trying to tell me something, or maybe offer some comfort to the feelings he knew I was having at that moment.  Whatever it was,  I realized, it had been a long while since I had felt that closeness from a wild horse.

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Irial

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And to make the evening more special, we were witnesses to an amazing sunset that night and then behind the clouds a full moon was shown to us for just a few minutes.

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Full Moon, August 21, 2013

Full Moon, August 21, 2013

Each day had been different on the mountain this time.   The horses were showing some different patterns.   They were making themselves more invisible, harder to find.   My heart had been touched by a beautiful blue roan stallion.   I wondered what the next day would bring.  I couldn’t wait for it to get here.

Sandy

Logo designed by Amber Bushnell

Logo designed by Amber Bushnell

Dryhead Update From Lori

I finally made it out to the Dry Head last Wednesday after visiting with Liesl & Kaibab at Diane’s. They are doing great and seem very happy in their new home with their new family! They look better than I have ever seen them look, so apparently this change was the best thing for them. We are working with them and I think soon we will be able to get their halter’s on.

Kaibab

Kaibab

Liesl

Liesl

 Most of the Dry Head horses are out on Mustang Flats.
First I saw Fools Crow with his band of the dark bay’s, and of course Mercuria.
It seems that Hidalgo could not hold onto all of his ladies. Fools Crow has Jewel with Mercuria, Halo, Icara and Morgana. They all seemed perfectly content and this group was quite a ways from Hidalgo and his little band.
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Hidalgo had Fresia and Montana with him. Just nearby on the hill were the bachelor boy’s intently watching Hidalgo and his little band. I watched as Hidalgo chased the bachelor boys away. Apparently they were a little too close for comfort. He sure is keeping his band close with an eye on the bachelor’s.
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I hiked out to see who the bachelor boy’s were that were watching Hidalgo and his band.
It was Hawk, Issaquah, Johnston and Kemmerer. Chief Joseph was alone but near the boy’s!
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Then I spotted Blizzard and hiked down to see who was with him. It was Cascade and they were quite a ways from the others. Blizzard was keeping some distance from the rest and did not really like me taking their photo’s. After I did take a few pictures he moved into the brush and I hiked back to my car.
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That is when I spotted Merlin and he was headed towards Hidalgo and his band.
Hidalgo saw him and took off in a full gallop across the dessert to chase him away. There was no confrontation, just chasing. After he felt Merlin was far enough away he turned and galloped back to his band.
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Merlin stopped and just kept on watching Hidalgo. I think he will be dogging Hidalgo and possibly Fools Crow too. I will have to make another trip out there this week to see if there are any more changes.
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I decided to head back down and see if I could find anyone else.
I did spot Hickok and his girls out on one of the “hills” towards the south end of the range.
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It was a good day and I look forward to another exciting trip soon!
Lori
Logo designed by Amber Bushnell

Logo designed by Amber Bushnell

 Thank you Lori!  Merlin really looks good.  It is so good to see Fools Crow with a band again.
Sandy

Burnt Timber Day 3. Excitement and Loss.

After the nights rain, we woke to an almost cloud free sky.  I knew the roads would be wet, so we waited a little while longer this morning before heading up Burnt Timber again.  We were heading up by 8:30.  It was a cold, windy but very sunny day.  I was hoping to locate the Mystery Horses from the day before.   At this point I had not even had a chance to look at those photos and figure out who it might be.

Heading up and easy section of BT.  Photo by Anh.

Heading up an easy section of BT. Photo by Anh.

Not far up the road we encountered Cappuccino and his band, down a hill on our right.

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Gabriele

Gabriele

We continued on and once again, I stopped to glass back towards the guzzlers.  There were no horses at either one.  We continued up to the mine.  Down below us was a very protected valley.  I commented that if I was a horse I would be down there in the sun and out of the wind.

I spent a couple of minutes looking around the area with my binoculars and then snapped this photo of Anh.

Anh, April 30, 2013

Anh, April 30, 2013

Anh then wanted a photo of me.  While she was adjusting her camera a very light horse came up almost where I was standing, from far below.  He pretty much just popped up right before my eyes!  It was Cloud and he was alone!

Cloud and Sandy's arm.  Photo by Anh.

Cloud and Sandy’s arm. Photo by Anh.

I managed to get a quick blurry photo of him before he headed down the hill.

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He was in a hurry to get where ever he was going, so we followed quickly behind him.  We looked down and saw the rest of his band just below us down the hill.

Aztec and Feldspar

Aztec and Feldspar

Cloud heads towards his band.

Cloud heads towards his band.

I concluded that he must have been chasing someone off, but we could not see anyone.  We decided to walk down the road a bit closer to them and get some good photos of them.

Cloud with Aztec and Feldspar in the background.

Cloud with Aztec and Feldspar in the background.

Feldspar and Aztec

Feldspar and Aztec

Aztec and Feldspar

Aztec and Feldspar

Inocentes

Inocentes

Aztec

Aztec

Aztec, Feldspar and Inocentes

Aztec, Feldspar and Inocentes

Feldspar

Feldspar

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The scene was peaceful.  I figured Cloud had been successful in chasing off whomever had been bothering them.  Then I saw Cloud turn and look up.

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I knew just by the way he was looking that it was probably the horse or horses that he had the encounter with before we arrived.  I expected to see Hernando, maybe Hamlet, Irial or Garay.  But when I turned to look in the same direction I saw a grullo horse.  But this one had both ears, so I knew right away it could not be Garay.  He also looked younger to me.

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From where I was right then, I could not see his big star and race on his face.  When he turned his head towards us more, I realized who it was.  Jupiter!  I could not believe how grown up he looked.  He had really filled out since the last time I saw him late last summer.  He must have stood there for 5 minutes or more before Cloud decided he better go up and have another conversation with him.

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Jupiter and Cloud

Jupiter and Cloud

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There was no kicking, hardly any squeals.  It all was very quite.  Then Cloud turned his head again, while Jupiter kept staring at Cloud’s mares below.  (Feldspar is Jupiter’s mother).  I do believe he was most interested in Aztec, as she appeared to be in heat.

I am always fascinated by the stallion interaction.  I never get tired of watching the exchanges between them.  Cloud then started to make his actions a little more aggressive and I saw the reason why.  Santa Fe’s head appeared behind Jupiter.

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Santa Fe appears in back

Santa Fe appears in back

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After several minutes of just standing with Jupiter and Santa Fe, Cloud’s focus turned back to his band and he decided to rejoin them.  The conversation with the boys must have been successful.

Cloud heads back to his band.

Cloud heads back to his band.

Jupiter continues to watch Cloud's band.

Jupiter continues to watch Cloud’s band.

Cloud, April 29, 2013

Cloud, April 30, 2013

The mood was very quite and peaceful in Cloud’s band.  The mares seemed relaxed and really acted unaware of the two bachelors lurking above.

Mica bugs Aztec

Mica bugs Aztec

Inocentes and Feldspar

Inocentes and Feldspar

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Mica and Aztec

Mica and Aztec

Juniper continued to stare down at the band.

Jupiter, April 29, 2013

Jupiter, April 30, 2013

With what seemed to be a peaceful lull in the action, I decided it would be a good time for us to walk back up to the ATV.  I did not feel comfortable with our position incase the action go intense.  I wanted to be on the uphill side of things.  That and I only had 150 shots left in my card and if something started to happen, I was afraid I would run out of shots.

Once we were a comfortable distance past them, we turned to watch again.  Jupiter never broke his focus from the band below him.  It was hard to believe he was only four years old.  His actions seemed older.

Jupiter

Jupiter

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Santa Fe was his back-up it appeared to me, as he was focused, but not as intensely and further back.

Santa Fe, April 29, 2013

Santa Fe, April 30, 2013

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The mares started to get up from their nap, and that was when Jupiter nickered at them.  That was all Cloud needed.  He was coming back up for some more discussion.

It was faster and a bit more intense this time.  As soon as he finished with Jupiter, he came up further to find Santa Fe.

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Cloud and Jupiter spar

Cloud and Jupiter spar

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Santa Fe watches the action.

Santa Fe watches the action.

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It did not take long for Santa Fe to retreat.  It seemed he did not want the conflict.  So with no physical contact between the two, Santa Fe left quickly.

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Cloud then returned to his band below and the boys wandered off in the opposite direction.

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Santa Fe and Jupiter heading off in the opposite direction.

Santa Fe and Jupiter heading off in the opposite direction.

I told Anh that this would be the time that he should move the band and get out of that area.  It wasn’t long and Cloud decided to do that.

Cloud and band

Cloud and band

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It was almost lunch time by now.  We had watched this for several hours.  It was hard to believe, the time just stood still for me.  As I changed my card in my camera.  Jupiter decided to come up and pass close by us.  He is such a beautiful stallion.  I am looking forward to seeing him gather a band of his own.

Santa Fe also passed close by us.  I found myself feeling sorry for Santa Fe.  I hope that he will be able to win another mare back this year.  Even though he is 18 (same age as Cloud), he still has time to get a mare.  It was by no fault of his that he lost Judith last summer.  He worked very hard last year to keep her, only to lose her to the removal.

They could have chosen to go much further from us, but I found it interesting that they chose to take the closer route.

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Jupiter, April 29, 2013

Jupiter, April 29, 2013

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Santa Fe, April 29, 2013

Santa Fe, April 29, 2013

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We stayed for a while longer, just in case the action would continue, but Cloud was now out of sight and this boys appeared to be more intent on eating.  So we continued up the road.

I spotted Mescalero and band near Cheyenne Flats.  They were not comfortable with us being near them, so we quickly left them.

Rosarita, April 29, 2013

Rosarita, April 29, 2013

Rosarita and Polaris

Rosarita and Polaris

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Mescalero and Band.

Mescalero and Band.

Mescalero

Mescalero

We moved on just enough to make them comfortable.  I then spent some time again glassing around from Burnt Timber to Sykes.  And again, just like the day before, we hiked down to the water catchment.  Not seeing anyone there, we continued up the road until we hit snow.

The wind was starting to pick up.  The weather  was calling for snow today, so I kept an eye to the sky.  Nothing looked to threatening at this point.  We turned around and started heading slowly down, stopping and hiking here and there.

In the same place as the day before, was Chino and Topper Too.  I did not stop this time, I wanted to give Topper Too some peace and we had gotten our photos of them the day before.

I came over a hill and instantly saw Jackson and his band to my right.  They were close by the road.  Remembering how they acted just the day before, I chose to continue driving slowly past time and up another small hill before stopping.  Jackson looked our way once, but continued grazing.  They were comfortable with us there today.  They were about a mile from where I had seen them the day before.

Yesterday Nye (the new foal) seemed to be stiff in her back legs, but today, she was walking much better and already seemed so much stronger.

Galena and Nye, April 30, 2013

Galena and Nye, April 30, 2013

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Nye

Nye

Jackson Band

Jackson Band

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Firestorm

Firestorm

We spent a little while with this band, but I did not want to wear out our welcome, so we continued down the road after a few minutes.

After continuing down the road a ways, I stopped to take a look at the two water catchments.  Cloud and band was at the one to the right of me.  There was a lone grulla or grullo to my left at the other water catchment.  I wondered who it was.  Could it be Jupiter going down to dog Cloud’s band?  We had passed Santa Fe up about where we had left him a couple of hours before, but we had not seen Jupiter.

It did not take me long to figure out that it was not a stallion, but a mare.  While I was looking through the binoculars, Anh snapped these photos.  I have uploaded them full size, so you can click on them and make them bigger.  There was no other stallion or band in sight.

I watched Blanca go up to her and clearly let her know who was boss.  This mare seemed to want to join the band.  At times she would turn away, but for the most part she wanted to be there.  It seemed very clear to me.  Blanca did not want her close, so she would turn away, only to have Cappuccino and his yearling son McKenhnie snake her back closer again.  It was so interesting to watch McKenhnie snake with his father.  He was doing a pretty good job for just a yearling.  They made a good team.  We decided we should hurry down there and hike back so we could watch this closer.

Photo by Anh

Photo by Anh

Photo by Anh

Photo by Anh

Photo by Anh

Photo by Anh

Photo by Anh

Photo by Anh

Photo by Anh

Photo by Anh

Photo by Anh

Photo by Anh

Photo by Anh

Photo by Anh

Photo by Anh

Photo by Anh

It probably took us a total of 20 minutes to drive down there and hike back to the guzzler.  I saw Doc (his band was in front of him and I was unable to see them all)  heading to the left.  He glanced my way, but kept going.  When we arrived at the water catchment, there was no one there.  I hurried up a nearby hill to look around, nothing.  They were gone.  I could now see the snow storm heading towards us from on top of the mountain.  It was probably at the place we had seen Jackson and band.  While we stood there trying to figure out what to do, Doc came running back.  Screaming.  It was more than a whinny.  It was a frantic scream.  The rest of his band was right behind him.  Wait, one was missing.  Demure.  It all made sense to me now.  The grulla we had seen was Demure.  What was going on?  It was as if Doc had not realized she was not there, until just then.  Had Demure left Doc?  It appeared to be the case.

Why did she do that?  She was so close to foaling.  Had she been leaving to foal and just got taken by Cappuccino?  I was unsure of the answer.  It was extremely painful to watch Doc screaming and running around looking for her.  Little Mandan look confused and sad.  Broken Bow was not in a panic, she almost seemed indifferent to the situation.  They followed Doc and then begin whinny for her too.

A confused Doc

A confused Doc

Doc and Broken Bow

Doc and Broken Bow

Broken Bow and Doc

Broken Bow and Doc

Doc, Broken Bow and Mandan

Doc, Broken Bow and Mandan

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Doc and band, April 30, 2013

Doc and band, April 30, 2013

The storm was getting even closer now.  I did not know what to do.  It seemed every time I made a move, Doc would turn and whinny at me.  It was as if he hoped I was Demure.  I felt the best thing for us to do was to leave them alone.  I did not want to cause him any false hope or interrupt  his search for her.  So we left them.  I turned back a couple of times before they were out of sight and every time I did, Doc was watching and whinnying after me.

I wondered how Demure could have slipped away without Doc, Mandan or Broken Bow noticing.  Where had they been?

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We reluctantly left the mountain and headed for town.  I had a text from Lori asking if we were off the mountain.  “There is a big storm coming.” she said.  I was happy to have Lori making sure I was down safety.  I am lucky to have such a good friend close by the mountain that will make sure of that.  Thanks Lori!

Later that evening, I decided I should text Matt and let him know about Demure.  I was really worried for her and my heart ached for Doc and little Mandan (Demure is his mother).

Matt got back to me and said that these random things happen quite often.  But that Demure is a very strong mare and  she has done this before.  He told me she leaves and chooses the stallion she wants to be with.  So she left Doc for Cappuccino.

It was hard for me to believe that anyone would want to leave Doc.  However, Cappuccino is one really great stallion too.  I wished I had another day to go up there and find out how it was all playing out.  But I had to leave to come home the next morning.

The Mystery Horses from the day before would continue to remain a Mystery.  It is going to be a long wait until my next trip.

Sandy

Logo designed by Amber Bushnell

Logo designed by Amber Bushnell

Fiasco and Leo, October, 2011

Who Will Have Foals This Year? ( part one)

I thought it would be nice to do a post and include photos of the horses that Alex and I think may have foals this year. So let’s take a look at who may be pregnant this year based on  who was not given PZP.  All mares born from 2002-2006 were not given it.  The mares born in 2007 may possibly be pregnant this year, so we will include them in this list.   It will be fun to watch these horses and see if we are right.

I also wanted to mention the recent article that came out about PZP.   Matt Dillon from PMWMC had a post on Sunday with a link to an article on PZP. ( http://www.pryormustangs.org/mustang_blog.shtml)  I thought I would also include that link here as well. I had not seen this article, but when I read Monday’s Missoulian it was also in there.    Please read it.  http://billingsgazette.com/news/local/epa-approves-horse-contraceptive-produced-by-local-nonprofit/article_b2d20e87-ab58-50fb-819b-d4b7a875ec98.html

In May of 2010 I met with Jay Kirkpatrick.  There was a lot of negativity going around about PZP and I wanted to go and meet Dr. Kirkpatrick and talk to him more about PZP.   Billings is about 5 or so hours from me, but I felt it was worth the drive to go and meet him and try to understand PZP better. Dr. Kirkpatrick was very easy to talk to and he was more than happy to give us a tour of his facility.  I left there with a better understanding of PZP.

So now let’s get to the list of mares that may foal this year!  The one thing that I learned while I was going through my photos was that I am so in love with the stallions that I have not been getting very good mare photos.  I vow from now on to get better mare photos!

Let’s start with the mountain top bands.   Let’s look at 7 different bands today, on my next post we will look at 7 more.

Cappuccino’s Band:

Gabrielle had a filly last year named Lilly.  Gabrielle is the daughter of Brumby and Jackson.

Cappuccino, July 2011

Cappuccino and Gabrielle, July 2011

Gabrielle, July 2011

Gabrielle and Lilly, July 2011

Doc’s Band.  The mare Gold Rush (Cabaret’s full sister) had the colt London last year.  She too may foal again this year.

Doc and Gold Rush, August 2011

Gold Rush, August, 2011

Santa Fe’s Band.  Demure is the beautiful grulla daughter of Two Boots and Broken Bow.  Demure had the beautiful black filly Kindra in 2010.

Santa Fe and Broken Bow, July 2011

Demure, July 2011

Teton’s (Diamond) Band.  Half Moon was born in 2007, to Rosarita and Starman, so she might possibly foal this year.  She is one of those mares that I did not get a good photo of.  If anyone would like to send me a better photo of her, I will post it here and give you photo credit!

Teton (Diamond), October 2010

Teton's Band, October, 2011, Half Moon is second the from left.

Dukes Band.  There are two mares in Duke’s band that may have foals.

Duke, August 2011

The first mare in Duke’s band that may have a foal is Graciana.  She is the daughter of the powerful stallion Baja and the mare Bacardi.

Graciana, August, 2011

The second mare in Duke’s band that may have a foal is Helenium.  Helenium is the daughter of Rosebud and Sandman.

Helenium, August, 2011

Helenium was born in 2007, so she is one of those “maybes”.

Jackson’s Band.  There may be three mares in this band that may foal this year.

Jackson, October, 2011

Galena, the daughter of Mariah and Lakota.   She had the foal Lander this year.  Lander is the grandson of Lakota.

Galena, October, 2011

Lander, Galena and Jackson, October, 2011

Firestorm had the colt LaDoux last year.  She is the daughter of Cloud and Velvet.

Firestorm and LaDoux, October, 2011

Firestorm and LaDoux, October, 2011

Heritage, Warbonnet and  Lakota’s daughter, is a maybe.

Hertiage, October 2011

The last band that I am going to post today is Chance’s (Tecumseh) Band.  This photo of Chance(Tecumseh) was taken around 5:30 am.  That is why it is not very clear.

Chance (Tecumseh), July 2011.

The mare in Chance’s(Tecumseh) band that may foal is Galadrial.  Galadrial is the daughter of Duke and Atlantis.

Jacinta,Galadrial and Bella (Beullah), July 2011

On my next trip to the Pryor’s (next week!!) I hope I will be able to update everyone with more current photos (and better!!) of some of these mares.

Sandy

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