The Gladiator

Before I start with the fun stuff I need to make a quick announcement: tomorrow I am heading up to the Pryors (yay!) for the first leg of my epic summer vacation (double yay!). So if you have been champing at the bit to purchase of my photographs, then you clearly have excellent taste. Kidding. What I mean to say is that the next 10 days would not be the best time to place an order. I don’t really care for how the website does the purchasing anyway, so I plan to try to get some photos up and selling on Etsy once I get back.

Now back to your regularly scheduled blog:

There are several wild horses who I label as my “favorite” horses. The problem is that tends to go against the meaning of the word favorite. Which is why I have an absolute favorite wild horse – Gladiator. He’s kind of like Cloud, only cooler. (Should I duck to avoid death glares and airborne projectiles after typing that?)

Gladiator is a bay roan stallion up in White Mountain. I don’t know when I saw him for the first time, but last year was the first time I really took notice of him. It was a lovely morning in the first week of June and quite a few bands had congregated in a lovely little meadow.

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White Mountain in May

I have been pounding my head into a brick wall trying to write for the past week. This writing lark is not as easy as it sounded. Before I get started on the horses, I really quick wanted to send out congratulations to Kerry and Caryn at the birth of their baby boy, Ezra. Good luck and prayers for your new family!

I think that it is much more fun to write stories about bands or individuals, but I feel like I need a “State of the HMA” address to kick things off.

A few weeks ago I returned to the Whtie Mountain herd. It was with no small amount of trepidation that I loaded the truck and set my compass for Rock Springs, Wyoming. The last time I had been up there had been August for the roundup. Watching friends hit the trap and knowing that it would be the last time I saw them was, well, it was a punch in the gut.

It’s not that I was avoiding White Mountain per se, except, well, I was. I can claim lack of funds all I want but that only holds through the winter. I’ve been to Sand Wash Basin twice this Spring, after all. But it was much easier to ignore the rock that had made a home in my gut then to let everything come to the surface again. Sure it never quite went away, but after a couple months it was barely noticable.

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