I finally got to go out to the range and visited with Liesl & Kaibab after about 2 1/2 weeks of fighting off the flu.
I missed Liesl & Kaibab so much and I really believe that they missed me too! Of course I missed going out to the range even though there are not too many horses out on the Dry Head yet, but I did see more “signs” of the horses throughout the range.
The first horses I saw were the greeters, but only Jesse James & Hickok. I think that Seneca and Hightail were on the other side of the ridge and from where I was I could not see them. But I did see them on my way out.
Hightail was pretty far away from the others and she does not look too good. She looked thin to me and a bit on the scraggly side. I am worried for her, but then again she is, after all 24 years old. Maybe the spring forage will get her looking and feeling better. I sure hope so. The others looked ok and I am not worried for them as I am for Hightail. As always, it was good to see them and I hope that the little bit of rain we got overnight will start to green things up on the range.
I saw who I think was Hawk & Issaquah out near Mustang Flat, but they were very far away and the pictures that I took had the darn power lines in them. I could not find a better place to get any photo’s without the power lines. But I am almost sure it was Hawk & his half-brother, Issaquah.
I had to get my binoculars out when I saw one lone black horse very far out on Mustang Flat. I could not tell who it was and I could not even get a decent photo. It could have been Seattle and maybe Sacajawea & Kemmerer were nearby in the scrub, but I am not sure of that.
I will be going out to the range again in the next day or so and I hope Brianna will join me. Maybe we will see more of the Dry Head horses!
Speaking of Brianna; (sorry Brianna but I have to brag on you a bit about this!) Brianna received a gold medal for a State Star Event, “Promote and Publicize FCCLA.” The convention took place in Cheyenne, and this qualifies her to go to the National convention in Nashville, Tennessee July 6-11. I believe that if you get on the Lovell Chronicle website you can read about it there.
Her project was about the Pryor Mountain Wild Horses.
Congratulations Brianna, and I hope you can raise the funds to go to the National’s. You deserve it!!!!
Thank you Lori! I am so glad you are feeling better!
Congratulations Brianna! That is so great and we are so proud of you! I hope you are able to go too and I hope my little bit can help you get there!!! 🙂
From the beginning, I started this blog to not only share my experiences with the Pryor Horses, but I also had another intention in mind: To Be There For The Horses. To work with those involved with the horses for the better good of them.
I knew that some things that I would say or do would not “sit well” with some people or groups. But I pretty much say it like it is and how I feel. I have said it before and I will say it again: “I am here for the horses. I am not a BLM hater, nor am I a BLM lover.” Also: ” I do not belong to any one group, I am here for the horses.” I will work with everyone involved if they are good, HONEST people. I would like to be treated with respect and I also expect the same for my friends and family.
Let’s just say, I don’t mind ruffling a few feathers if it gets the job done.
So, it is with that mind set that I am publishing Lori’s story. I love Lori like a sister, and I stand behind her. We are a lot a like. Don’t back us in a corner, it won’t be pretty. But stand beside us, and we will fight to the end for you. (and bring you chocolate chip cookies). We don’t hesitate to state what is on our mind for the animals (and people) we intend to protect.
Because of my post in August: “Please Stop , Thank you” (click HERE to read that), my blog got the attention of some people in Washington, DC and caused quite a wave of trouble here in Montana and also for Lori in Wyoming. I don’t regret a thing. I would do everything the exact same way, except I guess I would let Jared know that it was coming.
Liesl and Lori’s Story
Since someone has asked a question about how Liesl injured herself, I thought I would answer this question as honestly as I can. I was not going to bring it up because I did not want the Center to appear “insensitive” or “irresponsible” to Liesl’s blindness, but since it has been brought up, I think it is only fair that everyone should know what happened. I will start from the beginning so that everyone will understand how and why Liesl got hurt.
When Kaibab & Liesl came to the Center, Diane Granger (board member) and I volunteered to be the care takers for them. Since that day both of us have been feeding them, cleaning out the Shelter, and spending time with them. Diane has a heart of gold and loves those two horses, and the ones who run wild and free!! She has been going to the range faithfully since 1993!
At this time there were other horses in the field outside of the corral, including Exhilaration. As time went on we were seeing bent & damaged panels on the corral.
I am sure that Liesl did some of the damage as she is BLIND and was frightened of the other horses poking their heads through nipping and kicking at her, but, one has to imagine not being able to see the threat that is real through Liesl’s eyes. Her reaction is to kick & run away from the threat of danger. This is normal behavior for a blind horse. Also, keep in mind that her whole life has been this way…picked on, kicked, bitten, and chased away, because she is blind. I found this information while researching about blind horses: You can read more on this website, by clicking BLIND.
Horses are herd animals with a social hierarchy and a well-defined pecking order. Usually the blind horse falls to the bottom of the pecking order. The others sense the blind horse’s vulnerability and take advantage of it. A blind horse will get beaten up, chased away from food, and run off from the group. It is not a pleasant life. Blind horses can get hurt in a herd environment because with their fight-or-flight instinct, blindness leaves them with only one choice: flight. And fleeing from a bully in the herd in a blind panic (literally) is when a blind horse will run into a fence or a tree and get hurt.
We’ve found that even in an otherwise easy-going small herd of four or five horses, it only takes one sighted horse to bully the blind one and you have a potential injury on your hands.
The answer is not to isolate your blind horse, but to give him or her a compatible pasture buddy to hang out with. Horses need company, and a lonely horse is an unhappy horse. So we keep our blind horses in pairs, or with a sighted pasture buddy (we call them our “seeing eye horses”), in separate pastures. The rest of our herd – elderly sighted horses – stay together as a group in a different pasture.
We’ve seen that even small groups of blind horses can create pecking order problems. A lot depends on the individual personalities of the horses and the ‘social chemistry’ when they’re together. You’ll quickly discover what works and doesn’t work for your blind horse in your situation.
Although there are exceptions, in general a herd is a bad place to be for a blind horse.
The decision was made (not sure exactly who made this decision) to take all of the other horses, except Exhilaration, home. They needed the corral to gather up the other horses and so Liesl & Kaibab were released out into the field while the other horses were rounded up into the corral and loaded up into a trailer.
After that Liesl & Kaibab were in the corral with the heated water tank, and Exhilaration was on the outside. Everyday someone had to let Exhilaration in to get water, and the little ones went out into the field. At night Liesl & Kaibab were locked into the corral, and Exhilaration was on the outside.
Still we were noticing panels being dented and actually one of the bars on a panel was broken in half. It was then that someone decided to bring Exhilaration home. The Center has replaced the two panels that were totally destroyed, and since then there is no more damage to the panels.
From the beginning Diane and I had reservations about letting Liesl out into the field as it is fenced with barbed wire and the fact that she is blind, for the most part.
Our fear of Liesl getting hurt on the barbed wire became reality on the 16th of January.
I was getting their food prepared (they eat pellet mare/foal & some hay) and Kaibab was already in the corral. Liesl was making her way around the fence and just walked right into the barbed wire fence. She bent a T- post and ripped a section of her shoulder. It was a pretty nasty wound, but since I have horses at home I usually have medicine for these types of injuries. I went home and got some Fura-zone salve and applied it to her wound for three days. I have been spraying Vetricyn on it since then. It is healing well. Diane asked our Veterinarian about antibiotics and she said to just keep a close eye on it and as long as it did not look infected it should heal up well. Thank goodness she is healing well and should be fine.
I am not placing the blame on anybody; I am only stating the facts.
I think that the Center is planning on replacing the fence with wood this coming spring/summer.
Since resigning from the Center I am now a volunteer for the care of Liesl and Kaibab, but am not the one making the decisions concerning them. I can only make suggestions.
This leads me to the rest of my story:
I have always had the horses first and foremost in my heart and that has always been and still is one of my main concerns. I am a very passionate person when it comes to what I believe to be right. I will not compromise my principles, and I will not back down from what I believe is the right thing to do.
For those of you who know me personally, you know that I never claimed to be “politically correct”, nor am I afraid to “make some noise” and stand up for what I believe in. “The squeaky wheel gets the grease” is an old English idiom. Sometimes it makes a difference and sometimes it does not. But to sit by and do nothing when I believe something needs to be said is not an option for me. It is not in my nature. I admit that I can be a bit outspoken and blunt at times, but it is never without conviction from my heart, and I never intend to hurt anyone on purpose.
With all of this said, this past August I questioned the BLM and the NPS (by telephone) as to why they were gathering more horses from the Dry Head part of the range. I thought it strange that they would remove more mares and foals as there are way more stallions than mares in the Dry Head.
I had also made a couple of “personal” comments, from my “personal computer” on Sandy’s blog stating my “personal opinion” on the continuing gather/removal. I did this from home, not at the Center and in my mind it had nothing to do with the Center or my job as Director.
I believed that I was doing the right thing by the horses, and that it was part of my job. I believed that it was my job to question those who are responsible for managing this herd when and if the need arose. Well I guess I believed wrong. . I suppose they did not want any “friction” from the Center and “how dare I” question the government!
The BLM certainly did not appreciate my questioning and they sent a letter to the Board concerning my “combative behavior” among other things. They never even mentioned all of the good things I had said about what a good job they were doing throughout the gather or what excellent care the horses that were removed were getting!
The majority of the Board did not stand behind me (although John Nickle did and I believe Diane Granger also) but the rest did not, and so I felt that there was only one choice for me, and that was to resign.
If I could not have a personal opinion, and I could not question what I thought was a legitimate cause for concern, then I could do better for the horses on my own and through other avenues. Also, I suppose the Center does not need someone as “feisty” and “outspoken” as me to be the Director.
I gave my heart and soul to the Center, and so did my most loyal and compassionate husband.
It is with great enthusiasm and passion for these beautiful horses that I will continue to observe, study and protect the Pryor Mountain Wild horses. I also have peace in knowing and believing that I did the right thing for the horses, my character intact!
I want to thank Sandy for allowing me to help with her blog, and also for doing this post!!
Thank you Sandy for your dedication, honesty, passion and generosity to and for the Pryor Mountain wild horses!
A couple of quotes that I like!
Character is higher than intellect. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson In matters of principle, stand like a rock; in matters of taste, swim with the current. ~Thomas Jefferson
The Powell Tribune did a story on Liesl. It made front page in today’s paper. I found a link to the article and you can read it by clicking on LIESL
Also below Lori gave us a wonderful collection of photos and a short report on the “Three Musketeers”, Liesl, Kaibab and Exhilaration!
Thank you Lori and congratulations on the wonderful article in the Tribune!
On Friday the 21st of December Liesl and Kaibab finally got to be let out into the field at the Center.
Although Exhilaration has been at the Center for awhile now, he has not had the chance to run and play with them.
It was amazing to watch them all run and play. I had a tear in my eye as I watched them run like the wind!
I was concerned for Liesl as there are a few ditches that run parallel out in the field, but she did great.
She did stumble a few times, but now she knows exactly where the “trouble” spots are. They all know where the fence is.
Liesl sticks real close to Kaibab.
Every day we let them out in the field and in the evening they are let back in their corral. Exhilaration will stay on the
outside for a few more nights and then I believe that we can let them all stay together as they are getting along very well.
For the visitors who come to see them in 2013, it will be a sight to behold, especially when they are all running.
Lori sent me this report and a few photos from her trip to the Dryhead on November 14th. I thought even though it is December that we would all still like to see these great photos and hear her report! Thank you Lori!
I also included some photos that Lori sent me of Kaibab, Liesl and Exhilaration in the snow taken yesterday! Enjoy!
I received a package in the mail last week. In the package were copies of records of the Pryor Horses, dating back to 1993. Some were in Reverend Schwieger’s handwriting. Thank you Ross for sharing this wonderful information with me. It is priceless. I will share more about this in a post soon.
On November 14th I decided to go out to the Dry Head and see if I could find any horses. I never know what to expect when I go out there, and since that day after finding Merlin, I realized that the four bachelors I saw on this day were in the same place that I spotted Merlin.
It is about halfway through the range and it is near that tree where I have been spotting horses. I am planning on hiking up over that ridge to see what it looks like on the other side.
Possibly on this day that I saw Hawk, Issaquah, Chief Joseph and Jemez, Merlin may have been right over on the other side of this ridge. Now I have another mission.
I spent some time watching the bachelors before the wind picked up and I decided to move on. I never saw anyone else as I drove through the rest of the range.
On my way out I did see the Greeters again and decided to take some photos since they were close enough to the road. It was really cold and the wind was picking up. Many of my photos were blurry (I did not bring my tripod) so I only ended up with a few good photos.
I always enjoy seeing the Greeters of the Dry Head and have learned to stop and see them because we never know what tomorrow will bring.
On Saturday December 1, Brianna and I headed out to the Lower Sykes Area and hiked all over. We found Hidatsa and Johnston. They were busy eating whatever they could find and did not seem to mind us taking lots of photos of them.
They both look to be in good shape and so that is a good thing as we are now going into the hardest months for the horses. I do love these pictures though as you can see the vastness of the range in this area. Unfortunately, we spent so much time hiking all around here that we did not get to go up Burnt Timber road. We are supposed to get some bad weather and so I don’t think I will be able to get up there for a while now. I also don’t want to go that road alone and it is difficult to find others who want to venture up into the Pryor’s. Wish you were here Sandy, I know you would go with me!
We then went out to Mustang Flats where we saw Issaquah, Hawk and Chief Joseph (I think) They were so far out that I could not tell for sure. Then we drove right by some deer and one posed just for me.
Wednesday seemed to be the lucky day for me for finding some of the horses that I have not seen in a while. Especially Merlin!
But the other group that I love to see was Seattle and his harem. Seattle does not like to be seen and always snakes his harem away from sight. This day was no different and I snapped these photos as Seattle & Co. were heading off to another hiding place.
As they were heading out into the vastness of the Flats, Kemmerer turned and posed for me! I just love him, and am so happy that he is still on the range!
I also thought I would include some updated photos of Liesl, Kaibab and Exhilaration that I took on December 1.
Thank you Lori for the photos and report! I wish I had been there too. Liesl and Kiabab look like they are thriving under your care! Liesl is getting so big!
This afternoon I was out working with Kiowa and Kootenai. When I came in, there was a phone message from Lori. “I found Merlin”!!!
I don’t think I have heard 3 better words in a long time. It has been a long painful year and this was the best possible news that I could have heard! Thanks Lori!!!
It just goes to show you. Anything can happen in the Pryors! Hopefully this good fortune continues and we soon see Damsel too!
I feel as if the Horse God’s shined on me today as my eyes looked into the eyes of Merlin!
Merlin is ALIVE!!! After days and months of searching and hoping to find him, today was the day!
Here are the many photo’s of the strong survivor, Merlin!
He was digging, eating and walking fine with the three bachelors: Issaquah, Hawk and Chief Joseph.
I feel so blessed, and I feel so relieved for Merlin. He is with three other bachelors and so he is not alone.
He will be fine and he will come back strong. Let’s all hope and pray that this winter will bring much healing and nutrition to Merlin!
I drove out to the Dry Head yesterday morning and had no luck finding Merlin, or Sitting Bull, Cecelia & Mato.
I just keep on going out there hoping to find one or the other, or both.
I also have not seen Fiero or Seattle on my last two trips.
Let’s keep up hope that they are all ok.
The weather has been good, with very little rain or snow. That is all supposed to change later this week with the weather calling for very cold temperatures and rain/snow showers.
If that does happen, I doubt that I will be able to get out to the lower Sykes area of the range for quite some time. We will just have to wait and see how the weather is.
I did see Hidalgo with his harem. They were quite a ways off and I hiked out towards them just to get these photos.
I did not see Halo at first, but then she appeared from behind a bush. I was happy to see her. I think Montana was near Hidalgo, and the “girls” were together a short distance from them.
Hidalgo seems to be a very strong and devoted stallion, and I do hope he can keep them all together through the winter and into spring.
I am happy to see him taking such good care of his family. I have watched him a few times as he got right behind Montana to make sure he kept up with the rest. He will not leave Montana behind, and that is a significant quality for a stallion to have. It will be interesting to see if he will have his own offspring next year.
I found a new lookout spot along the Dry Head road and from there I saw the “Greeters” and two black stallions with a grullo.
I believe it was Hawk, Issaquah and maybe Hidatsa. Hickok had to run over to check them out and let them know that they were to stay away from his harem. I don’t think there was any serious fighting going on, but from where I was I could hear some horse noises. I believe he was giving them a warning. Jesse James stayed behind with Hightail and Seneca, although they were curious as to what was going on.
After that I drove out to lower Sykes and only found Inniq. He looks to be in good shape going into the winter and was just grazing alone. He does have some battle scars and I wondered who he had been fighting with.
I decided to leave him to his peacefulness and drove back to the Center to visit with Liesl and Kaibab.
They were happy to see me and I spent some time with them. As you can tell they both look real good, especially Liesl who has put on some much-needed weight.
I hope my next trip to the range will be just as good as this one, and maybe if Brianna joins me we will see more horses as she is my “good luck charm”, but I was happy to have seen some of the horses.
Thanks Lori for the update. You never know who you will see when you go. That is part of the beauty of it!
Liesl looks so good. I decided to post the photo of her from July so we could all see how amazing she looks now. Of course Kaibab looks great too, but Liesl has had the biggest changes! It is all because of your great care. (and Diane’s too!)
Yes, winter is scheduled to make a grand appearance in the next couple days. We have a winter storm warning out for 10- 14 inches in the mountains over here in Western Montana. We will probably see about half of that where I live at 4,500 feet. It will make for some great winter photos of the horses.
I am glad that it warmed up again in the Pryors, after the recent snow and rain. Hopefully it was enough to regenerate some forage for the upcoming winter months.
I planned this trip a few weeks ago, hoping the weather would be good. But anyone that has ever been to the Pryors, or any other mountains, knows that things can change fast, especially this time of year. That would be the case for me on this trip.
The afternoon that I arrived, I met Lori at the Center. I wanted to see how Kaibab and Liesl were doing. They are doing wonderfully. I was able to pet both of them. Liesl is a little love bug and really seems to seek out attention.
After spending time with them we headed up the Dryhead. We saw only one horse that afternoon, Fiero. He was by himself. Remember in the last post when Strawberry had been seen with Seattle? You can read that post by clicking LORI.
Today Fiero was alone. We wondered where Cascade and Bakken were. Were they also with Seattle?
After spending some more time looking in the Dryhead, we decided to head up lower Sykes and look for Merlin. He had last been spotted in the Bad Pass Spring area a week ago.
As we were almost out of the range, heading for Sykes, we saw the Greeters far in the distance.
We spent a long time hiking the Bad Pass Spring area. We saw plenty of tracks, but no horses. I had really hoped to see him, but it was not to be. I hope he is okay and we will hear from soon from someone who has spotted him.
It was getting dark fast, so we decided we better head back to Lovell. We were looking forward to the next day when we would be going up the mountain.
The next morning we started out early. We decided at the last second to drive up the Dryhead first. It was a pretty chilly morning. I immediately spotted the Greeters. They were on the other side of the small bay. I had never seen them on that side. We stopped and took a few photos. A Magpie watched us closely while we spent some time with these four.
We continued to drive through the rest of the paved road. Along the way we saw Fiero, still alone. A couple of miles down the road we spotted Cascade and Bakken together with no one else in sight. It will be interesting to see what happens next with this band. It seems to be changing daily.
On our way out I spotted 2 horses off in the distance. We stopped and looked through our binoculars. It was Halo and Fresia. We then spotted Montana lying down not too far from them and several feet away was Hidalgo.
I was really looking forward to heading up the mountain one more time before winter set in. The weather forecast was for rain/snow, but it was just cloudy and we were hopeful.
Weather in the mountains can change from one minute to the next. The best thing is to keep a watch on the sky and be prepared for any changes.
We got to the bottom of Burnt Timber Road, unloaded my ATV and started up the road. It was just starting to mist a little rain. Still cloudy, but nothing too threatening.
As we began to head up the road we saw several fresh signs that there were horses around, but did not see anyone. We continued up the road, past the first water guzzler, still no horses. The rain started to come down harder. We stopped to put on our rain gear and kept heading up. Still no horses. Lori and I both thought they must be tucked in the trees staying out of the rain, that continued to come down on us. We stopped for a few minutes and stood under some trees to get out of it. There was a pretty low cloud forming on top of the mountain. I could not tell if it was rain or snow. We talked about turning around, but decided to continue.
A friend of mine who reads this blog sent me a token made of feathers to place on Lakota’s memorial. I really wanted to get up there and be able to place it there before the end of the season.
We were about 2 miles from the top when the rain (which was coming down even harder now), turned to snow. I continued another mile. The snow was sticking and the wind was starting to blow. Even though we were prepared with rain gear, the raining (pouring now) started to make its way to our skin. The temperature was 35 and we were starting to get a chill. We made the tough decision to turn around. It was hard to do that. Not seeing a single horse. But the chances of even seeing them if we reached the top were probably pretty slim. It was heartbreaking.
I think everyone, once in their life should drive down Burnt Timber road in the pouring rain in an ATV! It is a life time experience that will be well remembered….One of the questions that presented itself to us was: do we drive faster to get down and risk sliding on the wet rocks and possibly go off the side, or the second question was: do we go slower and risk getting colder and colder? I choose the second , go slower and get colder. Even in the slow speed the rain was hitting our faces so hard that we were not sure if it was the rain or the red mud flying up that was hitting us. We started to laugh. It seemed Burnt Timber Road had doubled it’s length since I had last gone down it in early September.
We made it down safely. We loaded up and headed to Lori’s nice wooded warmed home to dry out, disappointed that we had not seen a single horse.
Matt was up on Saturday, so I am really hoping he gives us a report soon. If he does, I will reblog it here.
I have heard from several people that Damsel may be missing. I am not giving up hope on her. Perhaps she had her foal and was picked up by one of the bachelors in the process. The horses are so spread out now (it is the season for that) that this could be the case. Hopefully someone can see her and let us know.
I had a small time frame for this trip. I had a meeting in Billings on Tuesday and I also was scheduled to pick up two Crow Reservation rescue dogs from Rez Dog Rescue in Billings that evening. In another post I will tell you about my meeting in Billings.
As often and as much as I go to the Pryors, a trip like this was bound to happen at some point. Hopefully, like getting a flat tire, I will be good for a while now and good weather and lots of horses will be in my future!
I did not see many horses, but I enjoyed my time with Lori and her husband Jimmy. They are both wonderful people. Lori and I had plenty of time to talk horses, so that became the highlight of this trip.
I probably will not be back for several months now. Winter is starting to come and the horses will be hard to find. I will spend those months working with Kiowa and Kootenai. I will be sure to post an update on them.
Stay safe wild ones and stay strong. I will see you again soon.
Brianna and I had a great trip yesterday and spent almost all day out on the range.
Brianna and I met at about 9:30 at the Center. There was a young man & woman who were talking to Kaibab and Liesl and waiting for the Center to open.
We let them in and they bought one Sandy’sWild Caballo DVD’s! They loved it.
They wanted to go with us (follow us) out to the range…so that is what we did.
They both were very nice and appreciative. They are from Michigan and were on their honeymoon.
So off we went. We first saw the greeters. They were very spread out and we could not get close…but Jesse James, Seneca, Hightail and Hickok were all there.
Next we drove in to the Devil’s Canyon Overlook and saw Fiero, Cascade and Bakken.
We did not see Strawberry and we hiked around to try to see if we could find her, but no Strawberry. I was really worried about not seeing her with Fiero. They were all just resting, but kept looking towards the Canyon area. We hiked out a ways thinking maybe Strawberry was there, but nothing.
We continued on our way and for some reason we looked around by the turnoff by Bad Pass Trail. We hiked out a ways because Brianna saw a dun horse…well it was Kemmerer, way down in the canyon, but on a cliff.
Then Brianna hiked out further and she saw Sacajawea on the cliff with Kemmerer.
Brianna then (and we were following her) saw Seattle and another horse down there…it was Strawberry!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So we took lots of pictures and watched as Seattle “bred” with her.
I could not believe that. I don’t know how this happened from just Sunday when I was out there…but Seattle has Strawberry!!!! I wonder how long this is going to last and how Sacajawea is feeling about Strawberry in the harem.
I also wonder if there was a fight between Seattle and Fiero, but did not see any “war wounds” on Fiero. Possibly, as Sandy pointed out, Strawberry did not like Cascade in Fiero’s harem! We will just have to wait and see how this plays out.
So there is a lot of drama in the Dry Head again!!!
We never found Merlin…we looked and looked but no Merlin.
On our way out we decided to go to Bad Pass Spring in the lower Sykes area..and we hiked for awhile. We saw Medicine Bow all alone. He was on the side of a cliff.
I almost did not see him, but just happened to look up and saw him. We never saw anyone else in that area, but lots of hoof prints.
Then after leaving that area we decided to go to another part of the lower Sykes area, but just as far as my car would go. On our way we spotted a black horse, so we got out and hiked to see who it was. Surprise of all surprises…it was Cecelia…and we did not see anyone else.
I was so worried because we did not see the foal or Siting Bull. Then we drove a bit further and turned around. On our way back we saw Cecelia again and then we saw Sitting Bull. Now I am really worried…we did not see a foal with them.
Well then Joe and Devin (who were with us) hiked a bit further up over the ridge and pointed down as if to say he saw another horse. He saw the foal. Thank God…he found Cecelia’s foal (who has no name yet). Note: we just found out today that Matt has named him Mato.
Anyway….the little guy was laying under a tree and Cecelia and Sitting Bull were a ways from him. I wondered why. I suppose he was just resting, but when he got up he was limping on his right rear leg. His leg seemed to be hurt, but I did not see anything that looked too bad. I did not see any swelling, or anything that looked like a break…no blood or anything…so hopefully he just has a sprain or pulled muscle in his leg.
I am not an expert on these things, but he was putting some weight on it and moving it, so hopefully he will heal. These injuries just worry me.
He is so beautiful, a grullo color with a snip. He then ran a little bit..limping..but able to run, to his momma. At first she seemed to nip at him but then let him nurse, and then he continued to graze with her.
Sitting Bull was nearby too, but they were very spread out. I was worried for the little guy.
Then Cecelia just kept on walking while grazing and he was left behind a bit. Sitting Bull came close to him and they touched noses..it was so so cute. I felt better while the grazed together. The more he moved around the better he was walking,. I think it was stiff from resting. Maybe that is how they just go along…grazing a distance from each other. but I will still worry about his limp and Cecelia taking care of him.
It was a real good day as far as seeing the horses, but I still felt sad that we did not find Merlin.
Thank you Lori for the great update! I love your photos. It is so nice to see photos of Sitting Bull and Cecelia’s colt. I hope he heals fast and grows old in the Dryhead.
I remember when I saw Fiero alone in March of this year. You can read that post by clicking FIERO. I felt really bad for him being alone, but then just a few days later someone reported that he was with Strawberry again. I think she does that quite often. Leave him and go off doing her own thing for a while. It will be interesting to see if she is back with him.
I am heading to the Pryors tomorrow. Lori and I are going go to the top of the mountain via Burnt Timber Road. I hope to be able to check on everyone along the way, and visit Lakota once more before the snow blankets him. Then go up the Dryhead and lower Skyes to check on everyone there.
Here are a few pictures from my trip Saturday and Sunday this past weekend.I am sad to report that I did not find Merlin as hard as I tried, he did not show his beautiful face. I can only hope that he is hiding out and healing from his battle wounds.Saturday, I did see Fiero with Bakken, Strawberry and I was surprised to see Cascade with them.They all look good, but Cascade does look thin as was reported by several others.
I just love Fiero and think he is a strong and majestic Stallion. He is special to me because he is the son of Sacajawea (one of my favorites on the Dry Head) and the fact that he has held his harem together for quite
some time now.
He has 3 of the 14 mares on the Dry Head and none of them will reproduce as they are on PZP.
This is sad to me because I believe Fiero should have more representation on the range.
I think Cascade seems a bit lost to me since they took Lewis away from her.
I believe that Blizzard is back to being a bachelor again although I did not see him either day while I was out there.
I could not get Fiero to look at me and did not want to disturb them any more than I did.
I also took a picture of Mustang Flats on this very cloudy day so everyone could see the vastness of it.
I believe there was still some smoke in the air as well and so the photos are not the best.
On my way out of the range I saw Jesse James, Hickok and
Seneca…I believe that Hightail was nearby but just not in view.
They were a very long ways off and I did not hike out to them.
Most every time I have been out to the range this past summer I see the devoted Jesse James with Seneca and Hightail. Sometimes Hickok is with them and sometimes he is not, so I am going to say that
Jesse James is the Harem Stallion and much more reliable. Hickok sometimes goes out with the bachelor boys and I have never seen Jesse James out with the bachelors.
They seemed to be just out grazing and taking it easy.
I wish that we had received more moisture this past spring & summer so that the horses would have more to eat, but it just did not happen.
Maybe this winter will bring some much needed moisture, but until then
I will worry about these horses finding enough food to sustain them through the winter months.
The next set of pictures are from my trip, again, to the Dry Head on Sunday morning. I thought maybe I would see more of the horses since it was earlier, but not to be. I still did not find Merlin.
I managed to get a few good shots of the Big Horn Sheep that were hanging around Devils Canyon Over Look.
I always enjoy seeing them.
Out on Mustang Flats I saw Seattle, Sacajawea and Kemmerer. They were way out there, but I was up for the hike.
I tried not to disturb them but they saw me coming from the distance.
Seattle looks thin, but he always looks that way. His injury from years past must be healed as he was not limping at all.
He is a beautiful and gallant Stallion and very protective.
Both Sacajawea and Kemmerer look real good and I am so happy that Kemmerer is still on the range, as he is one of my favorites. I have been watching him grow up and he has turned out to be a very robust bachelor. I hope someday he has his own harem and some offspring in the future.
Seattle thought I was getting too close so he started to move Sacajawea and Kemmerer.
I then left so that they could feel safe and I did not want to disturb them any more than I already had. I did thank them for allowing me to take their photos!
Maybe next trip to the range I will get to find Merlin and more of the horses, but I think they are going out to the Lower Sykes area, possibly because there is more for them to eat.
Brianna and I are planning a trip out there on Friday afternoon. Maybe Brianna will bring luck with her!