Saturday, February 14, 2015
General Crook Rode A Mule
when he was pursuing Geronimo. I suspect that it was gaited. No doubt it was tough. He understood a bit about Indian horses. He is one of many soldiers who pointed out that unless the cavalry immediately overtook fleeing Indians they simply could not be run down.
The Morgan/Thoroughbred rooted stock of the mounted soldier simply could not cover ground the way the little Spanish ponies that the Indians rode could. I never really understood how fast these horses could cover ground until I got my first Choctaw. Joey is a touch over 14 hands, a bit taller than I prefer but not so big as to be clumsy. He is gaited and has a touch of Cherokee lineage. One of his gaits is significantly faster than the normal canter of most of my other horses. His trot is as fast as the lope that my other horses use when being ridden for stretches of five miles or more.
"My other" horses are also Colonial Spanish horses. Each of them cover fifty miles of rough terrain at a steady, wonderful speed. "My other" horses would leave most modern horses behind after about the fifteenth mile. "My other" horses are highly impressive athletes.
Yet, "my other" horses cannot keep up with my Choctaw. Terry and Emily are putting heavy miles on him. Terry plans to enter him in a 25 mile timed race in a few more weeks. It will be his first competition. It will be her first also. He will have had no formal training. All he will have is a lifestyle that allows him to remain outside 24/7, eat hay, and remain shoeless. I am curious as to how he will do.
In a few weeks I want him to do a good 25 mile run for time. I want some of my big kids to join Terry on that run.
I hope they can keep her within sight now and then.
Posted by Steve Edwards