Wow! It's almost the end of 2015! We missed sending out a 2014 Christmas greeting and a Happy New Year newsletter, then missed a real Spring update, and now the endless hot summer and fall have come and gone. At last, it's cooled off and all is well here at the WHR. . .life is good! Great horses are still the focus of our days and keep us ever busy. To briefly catch up, 2014, was the Year of the Horse in the Chinese calendar; one of those "unexpected experiences", especially for us, but the Lord continues to bless those who look to Him first for everything, and we indeed have been renewed and blessed. We spent 2015 catching up from 2014's roller coaster ride, and with a grateful heart this Thanksgiving we are moving forward, healthy and enjoying all the precious things and lessons a life with horses brings.
Fall WHR News, Gelding String Update, and Heading South Soon...
We have had a hot summer and stayed home much of it getting the ranch in order, fending off local forest fires, and schooling a student in a month-long program in August who is now staying on in an apprentice position and helping out immensely. It was a busy fall; the weather held out beautifully here in northeast Oregon and we got in some great riding, preparing our horses for their new owners. We even squeezed in a good day of gathering on the Owyhee Desert with our fancy red roan, Easy Rider , who we sold to Keith Gardiner of Wasco, California, last spring and kept to ride and put in the bridle this year.
Of course, Wil rode his ever-faithful, smooth-riding, good-minded Tennes see Walker ranch gelding Waldo . Though Wil still prefers his cow horses, after turning 74 this August he's finding Waldo more and more practical for comfort on those long days in the saddle. Though the brunt of much teasing from his cowboy buddies, Wil just grins, shifts gears on Waldo and walks off, leaving them in the dust!
In late September, while on a trip buying horses, we stopped and visited clients Susan Gortendorffer and Bob Bradley and our former horses, Wil's personal gelding Woodyand paint Wishbone in Jackson, Wyoming . The golden autumn colors of the aspens were a heavenly site. These former Polo players and trainers are great folks with a super horse facility, and they have riding access to some truly beautiful and breathtaking Wyoming wilderness. Their Hoback River Ranch is the ideal spot to hold a clinic next summer. Get your name in the pot early for th at one!
This has been the fall of buckskins and repeat clients! All four geldings have been sold to return clients who had deposits for horses on order.Scout sold to Dianna Zitter of Columbus, Ohio, her fourth WH R pleasure trail gelding. Sniff, o ur shy, "one-person" buckskin, was matched with Anne LaDow of San Diego, California; her dad had purchased his gelding from us back in 2006! Sniff had the WHR ranch "cow horse to urban trail horse conv ersion" and did really well, a very cool horse. Kelly Dixon from Los Olivos, California, had been kicking herself for a year after missing out on buying Bling, but found her next love with The Golden Boy . He's a grandson of Playgun, a unique and special big buckskin finished rope horse she'll be using for her ranch versatility trail competitions. Already this year she cleaned up with three year-end buckles which she won on her first WHR gelding, Dunnit aka Jelly Bean, that she purchased three years ago along with her husband's buckskin WHR gelding, Snickers . Now they've got matching golden buckskins-- how lucky can you be?
As lucky as the owners of Pendleton Whiskey! Last spring we sold Everest, the gentle giant buckskin (16.1 hands, 1500 lbs) to Linne' Dodge of Hood River Oregon, and this month her husband, Ron, bought a matching buttermilk buckskin, Whitney! So two couples now have matching WHR Buckskins! We'll be looking to see this pair riding in style astride these handsome WHR mounts at next year's Pendleton Round Up parade, fashioned with Pendleton Whiskey serapes draped over their saddles!
We still have a few more great geldings in our fall offering, and we'll be taking them south to Arizona and ride them down there this winter, but don't expect them to last long! These good ones are hard to come by and we have folks with deposits waiting in line. We have a new 6 year-old, 14.3 hand bright sorrel, royal- bred cow horse with extensive ranch use and roping & branding experience. He's quiet, soft in the bridle, supple, and sweet! We also have a new elegant 8 year-old, 15.1 hand, sleek-built chestnut reining horse presently in our versatility training; he's a good-minded athlete, ideal for the new and popular AQHA Ranch Pleasure class or Non-Pro Reining classes. He's gentle and so fun to ride, smooth, and making the WHR Trail Conversion in style, he's willing and loves riding outside. Another is a new, rich, pretty 11 year-old bay, barely 15 hand, "been there-done that" ranch and trail horse, super smooth, collected easy loper, and a kind, cool-headed trail horse. Great on cattle too, bred for it! There are more in the making, so keep watching for updates on our Geldings page.
Heading South to Arizona Soon...Join us for our Winter Horsemanship Training Classes
We are presently packing and gearing up for our annual southward trek to our winter facility in Cochise Arizona. We should be leaving in another week or so and will be settled by December 15th. When we hit the road, we'll send out a notice with our contact info, and you can watch the website for updates. Our winter season of horsemanship training classes are scheduled, and we're always available to set up times for private clinics or month-long programs as well. Sign up now and continue the journey with your horse. Always strive for a better ride by advancing yourself and your horse! We'll show you the Way...Howe & Why! See you this winter in Arizona! May you have a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend, and be sure to take time to really give the credit where it's due...and the Lord will bless you! We appreciate and feel gratefully blessed by the relationships forged with all of you, our wonderful clients and students whom we call our friends. Beverly & Wil
Life, Horses, & God...the Connection
Keeping a spiritual perspective of life is imperative in these crazy times we live in. Seeking truth and letting God have the reins of your life and yielding to His guidance that stirs the heart, that is what is truly important. We liken that yielding to God in life to a good-minded horse trying to comply with the direction that we as owner/rider give him. Just as horses need a leader, so do we as people. Emmanuel, God with us, that still small voice; we pray it grows louder in your life every year so that we all may heed His calling. A horse is lost without its leader, so are we, as a people and as a nation. It all starts with that relationship, and the same goes with your horse.
In action is where love of God is proved and shines the most. One can be a loner and say he has love for others, but only when those interactions in relationships are tested do we truly know what love in action is. Horses may do well for us as long as we play it safe and never get "out there" and expose and challenge them or confront fears. As Wil always says "you are only as tough as the company you keep, or the trail you choose." This is not to say to jump in over your head, but life tests us all, and by those trials we are made stronger. So is it with horse training. To push one's horse past its comfort zone, to draw a line in the sand ...no means no and whoa means whoa. When under fire, so to speak, being able to handle tests and challenges and the pressures of life, making us strong and reliable...so it is with your horse. We can get complacent, and so can our horse's respect for us, and also our respect for the Father.
God is in charge of our lives whether we believe it or not, and we are that god to our horse; he is reliant on us for everything--feed, water, proper foot care, worming, dental care, and vaccinations to see that he is cared for. So it is with us; our reliance is on God. God is fair and just and so must we be with our horse. Remember, it is a relationship, as it is with Christ. When we try to take the reins back, saying to God, "I can do this my way", we usually end up in a hassle of some kind. Horses who have "their way" are dangerous, to themselves and their owners and riders. Leadership is a responsibility and a necessity for success with horses. Submission and a willing attitude towards God are attributes we should all strive for in ourselves and seek from our horses . Like a broken record...Wil and I keep it simple, always have, and always will. Because horses and life go hand in hand--what you put out (in energy, thought, action, and commitment ) is what you get back. Let us help you find the Way with both.