Horseback Riding

Horseback Riding Through History: Royal Cutter

January 13, 2014

This son of American Quarter Horse Hall of Famer Cutter Bill made a name for himself in the reined cow horse industry.

royalcutterpedigree

Royal Cutter, sired by Cutter Bill, won the 1971 National Reined Cow Horse Association Snaffle Bit Futurity, among other accolades.

From America’s Horse

As buckaroos and reinsmen of the West search their memories for the great cow horses of the past, one name invariably comes up among all of them – Royal Cutter.

It all started in Texas when an oilman named Rex Cauble bred a palomino stud named Cutter Bill to a Royal King mare he owned named Royal Ida Mae. At one time, Cauble owned some of the most famous stallions in the Quarter Horse world – Wimpy, Silver King and Hard Twist. Cutter Bill was used solely as a teasing stallion. Then Sonny Perry hauled him to a cutting pen, won a couple of world championships, and Cutter Bill became top dog around the Cauble Ranch. Cauble even named a chain of western wear stores after him. Read the rest of this entry »

Horseback Riding Through the Streets of Denver

January 6, 2014

Rancher Gary Lake drives Longhorn cattle in places you wouldn’t expect, with the help of his American Quarter Horses.

Every year, Gary and his crew drive these iconic Texas Longhorn cattle through the streets of Denver with the help of good American Quarter Horses. This year the cattle drive will take place on January 9, 2014, to kick off the stock show. Photo courtesy of Gary Lake.

Every year, Gary and his crew drive these iconic Texas Longhorn cattle through the streets of Denver with the help of good American Quarter Horses. This year, the cattle drive will take place on January 9, 2014, to kick off the stock show. Photo courtesy of Gary Lake.

From America’s Horse

You will not find two more iconic American critters than American Quarter Horses and Longhorn cattle. Put the two together on Main Street in downtown Denver or Colorado Springs, and you’ve got what Gary Lake, AQHA member and manager of the Searle Ranch near Ellicott, Colorado, calls a “downtown trail drive.”

It’s a fitting name.

The scene unfolding between the curbs along this section of a parade is right out of an Old West cattle drive. Read the rest of this entry »

Win a Dude Ranch Vacation

December 16, 2013

AQHA Horseback Riding Program participants: enter today to win a dude ranch vacation in Colorado.

Visit AQHA’s Facebook page for your chance to win a Dude Ranch Vacation of a lifetime.

AQHA has partnered with the Dude Ranchers’ Association to give one lucky member of the AQHA Horseback Riding Program the vacation of a lifetime and a unique opportunity to log riding hours in Colorado.

One member of the AQHA Horseback Riding Program will win a week stay for two at Colorado Cattle Company & Guest Ranch in New Raymer, Colorado. The prize package includes lodging, meals, horseback riding and most ranch activities while at the dude ranch. Package value is $4,500. The winner is responsible for travel to and from the dude ranch.

Read the rest of this entry »

Resilient Ranch Mounts

December 9, 2013

Horseback riding every day all year long? It’s a rare ranch horse that can turn in great rides day in and day out.

A working cowboy depends on his ranch horse to an extent that most of us can only imagine. Smokey, Boots O’Neal’s favorite mount, surpassed all expectations of a great ranch horse. Photo courtesy of Boots ONeal.

A working cowboy depends on his ranch horse to an extent that most of us can only imagine. Smokey, Boots ONeals favorite mount, surpassed all expectations of a great ranch horse. Photo courtesy of Boots ONeal.

From The American Quarter Horse Journal.

A cowboy for nearly all his life, Boots O’Neal has worked on ranches that include two of the Lone Star State’s most historic remudas: the Waggoner Ranch near Vernon, Texas and the Four Sixes in Guthrie, Texas.

He has punched more cows and ridden more horses than anyone could ever hope to remember, but he’ll never forget the great rides on one bluish-gray gelding named Smokey, a hard-working horse that Boots depended on for more than 15 years.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Future of our Association

December 2, 2013

We need to cultivate the generation that will one day be AQHA.

“I say this with the utmost respect for my father: To be as good as our fathers, we must be better. Imitation is not support, nor is it progress.” Photo courtesy of Becky Newell.

“I say this with the utmost respect for my father: To be as good as our fathers, we must be better. Imitation is not support, nor is it progress.” Photo courtesy of Becky Newell.

By AQHA Past President Peter J. Cofrancesco III.

Editor’s Note: Peter originally wrote this piece in 2011, during his term as AQHA president. The plans that were hatched then to develop youth outreach programs are now coming to fruition. In 2014, you can expect to see fun, exciting programs rolled out to target both younger kids (ages 5-9) and older youth. We’ll offer updates as they become available, but for now, enjoy Peter’s thoughts on why it’s so important to bring young people into the American Quarter Horse world.

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Horseback Riding: Writing Into the Sunset

November 11, 2013

Follow one freelance journalist’s venture to get better with writing and horses.

Photo courtesy of Harry Whitney.

Tom Moates on Tigers TJ is interviewed by story author, 14-year-old Olivia Wilkes from Alabama. Photo courtesy of Harry Whitney.

By Olivia Wilkes.

Pay a visit to Tom Moates’ farm where he lives among the Blue Ridge Mountains in Floyd, Virginia, and you’ll find this author and freelance writer doing just as much riding as writing.

Tom is not only an award-winning author and freelance journalist but an enthusiastic horseman, as well. He combines these two interests and writes his books and the majority of his articles on horses.

Read the rest of this entry »

The AQHA Champion

November 4, 2013

One of the first AQHA awards had a rocky beginning.

In 1952, Babe Mac C became one of the first AQHA Champions. AQHA File Photo.

In 1952, Babe Mac C became one of the first AQHA Champions. AQHA File Photo.

By Jim Jennings in America’s Horse.

Not too many years ago, achieving the title of AQHA Champion was the epitome of the American Quarter Horse industry.

Since a requirement of the award was to earn points in both halter and performance events, it signified a true all-around horse.

Today, due to the specialization of the Quarter Horse, it’s almost rare for a horse to be named an AQHA Champion. But the first time the award was presented, it signified a real advancement in the creation of the AQHA we know today.
Read the rest of this entry »

“Tread” Carefully When You’re Hauling to Go Horseback Riding

October 28, 2013

Learn how to read the tires on your horse trailer.

There is more to tire safety than just the tread. AQHA Corporate Partner USRider offers advice to ensure that your trailer’s tires are equipped for the road. Journal photo.

There is more to tire safety than just the tread. AQHA Corporate Partner USRider offers advice to ensure that your trailer’s tires are equipped for the road. Journal photo.

From AQHA Corporate Partner USRider.

When was the last time you took a really good look at the tires on your horse trailer?

While air pressure is very important, it’s not the only thing that counts when it comes to tire safety.

Everything you need to know about your horse trailer tires is printed on the sidewall of the tires, and knowing what all those markings mean could prevent you from having a blowout.

Read the rest of this entry »

Rein Holds for All Styles of Horseback Riding

October 21, 2013

Whether you ride English or western, learn how to hold your reins correctly.

This western, split rein hold with a leverage bit is just one variation of many rein holds for different disciples and bridles. Journal photo.

This western, split rein hold with a leverage bit is just one variation of many rein holds for different disciples and bridles. Journal photo.

By Christy Landwehr of the Certified Horsemanship Association.

There are several different types of rein holds. They are based primarily on two things: what you’re going to be doing with the horse and the type of bridle you have in the horse’s mouth.

The Snaffle

A snaffle bit works off the corners of the mouth.

When you have reins that are set up in a western format, you can hold your split reins in what is called the bridge.

This puts the excess of either rein on the opposing side of the horse’s neck, and the two reins are held in the middle where they overlap. Place the reins in the palm of your hands so that tops of your hands are upright. At this point, you can either place your pinky beneath the excess of the rein on either side or grasp them around in a fist.

Read the rest of this entry »

Delicious Recipes for Horseback-Riding Trips

October 14, 2013

Dutch-oven cooking allows for fine dining on the trail.

Enjoy the taste of home-cooked treats while on the horseback-riding trail.

Enjoy the taste of home-cooked treats while on the horseback-riding trail. Americas Horse photo.

From America’s Horse.

With fall upon us, many horsemen are hitting the trail in a last effort to spend time with their horses before poor weather hits.

Many avid sportsmen are also out with their horses for outdoor recreation. Hunting, packing and long rides make our equine companions a necessary partner.

But spending days out on the trail or at camp doesn’t mean sacrificing great, home-cooked food.

Beef jerky. Trail mix. Maybe some canned sardines. That’s typical camping fare, right?

Read the rest of this entry »

Tracking Devices for Horses

October 7, 2013

Horseback Riding Tip: GPS navigation devices are helping one man track his horses in mountain forest pastures.

Locating your horses is made easier if one is wearing a GPS. Photo courtesy of K.L. Spear.

Locating your horses is made easier if one is wearing a GPS. Photo courtesy of K.L. Spear.

From The American Quarter Horse Journal

GPS navigation devices seem to be everywhere these days, helping us humans figure out just where we are, where we are going, where the nearest coffee shop is and even where we have been recently. Do you ever wonder whether you might be able to use similar technology to find and track your horse?

Maybe you’d like to sit down at a café in Paris to see just what your horse is up to in the pasture back in Oklahoma? Or perhaps if your trail horse escapes and disappears into a half million open acres on a back country ride, you’d like to just pop open your cell phone and find him?

Read the rest of this entry »

Catching a Buzz

September 30, 2013

All Night Buzz is an all-around American Quarter Horse.

All Night Buzz did not find his stride in racing until he found his niche in roping and sorting cattle. Here, Helen Vanek celebrates a racing win aboard “Buzz.” Journal photo.

All Night Buzz did not find his stride in racing until he found his niche in roping and sorting cattle. Here, Helen Vanek celebrates a racing win aboard “Buzz.” Journal photo.

From The American Quarter Horse Journal.

You might be expecting this to be a story about a horse in his first career. Or second career. Or even a third career. You would be wrong. This is a story about a racehorse in his first, second AND third careers. In 2011, this now 5-year-old gelding won races on the track, sorted cattle in the arena and roped as a heading horse.

All Night Buzz is a flag bearer for the fastest and most versatile horse on earth.

“He’s a true Quarter Horse,” said Helen Vanek, the Canadian jockey and all-around horsewoman who broke “Buzz” to saddle, rode him in races, roped steers off him and worked the herd in team sorting. “Buzz handles himself with class and intelligence, likes his job and enjoys the work. He has got a lot of confidence, a good personality and good character. He’s wonderfully bred: He’s a grandson of Mr Jess Perry, he’s got Three Oh’s and Dash For Cash on top, he’s a double-bred Three Oh’s on bottom and goes back to Jet Deck. And he’s beautiful. Everybody who sees him really likes him.” Read the rest of this entry »