Wild Horses: The Adobe Town Wild Horses in PrisonDecember 6, 2010
Filmmaker James Kleinert and rock group U2 team up to save wild horsesMarch 11, 2011
The brightest, best part of the Adobe Town roundup was at the end of the first day, on the way back to town after the helicopter had landed, I found a beautiful band of horses, still wild and free.
A pale palomino colt ran, chasing his older brother, as his father, a gorgeous sorrel stallion looked on. The colt ran up behind his father, curious to see what was going on.
Then the family came together, and then moved off. This was the last time I saw them in the wild. My friend Judy named the colt Mica, and I had a feeling I would see him again. I thought about him many times over the next month, wondering how he was, and thinking about bringing him home to live with my Cremello Colts.
Two months later at Canon City, there were 1200 horses from Adobe Town and Salt Wells Creek that had been hauled from their home in Wyoming. I visited on the Adoption Day and was saddened to see all these horses that I had seen so proud and free out in their herd area now in pens, separated from their families. There were hundreds of weanlings, but Mica stood out from the other April foals because of his color. Fran Aklee had been kind enough to take one of my photos of Mica in the wild out to the weanling pens and identify that he was indeed there before I came to the adoption.
He was fooling around a bit with another weanling, and looked at me curiously. I filled out my adoption application that day for Mica, and arranged to have him delivered to Rich Scott at his place in Byers for a month of handling before he would come to my house. Rich has been continuing to help me work with my Cremello colts.
I thought he would be coming soon, but one of the stallions that had come from Adobe Town escaped when they were unloading them, jumping a 6 1/2 foot fence, and heading off to a 2000 acre nearby property. He defied efforts to capture him, tranquilizer dart him, and even turned the gentle saddle horse turned out to lure him in into a renegade. I named him Liberty for his fierce will to be free.
The state vet refused to release any of the horses from the property until all the horses had their coggins tests- including Liberty – so I had another chance to visit Mica and the other Adobe Town horses at Canon City on January 7 at the next adoption.
As far as I know, Liberty is still out there, but the state vet relented and on January 12 Mica was delivered to Rich’s as it started snowing.
Rich and I went into his pen, and Mica was remarkably calm for a baby who had been taken from his friends and trailered to a new place. He watched us closely and curiously, and moved to face Rich as he moved around.
I left him to settle into his new home and his hay.
On Wednesday I went to visit, and Rich had been going into his pen several times a day, but this was the first day for Mica to have a halter on. Rich took him outside his pen, and Mica got to have his first experience of what the halter and leading was all about. Mica, just like his soon to be brother Claro, loves to roll in the mud, so he was very dirty when I saw him.
Rich worked very slowly with him, with lots of time to rest and think about what was going on.
At the end, he came and stood in the part of the pen that was closest to us, watching us talk and watch him, and finally nuzzling my hand as it rested on the pen.
It was so bittersweet to connect with this beautiful wild horse. He will never grow up with his family in Wyoming, but he will have a new life with me and my other boys.
His father the sorrel stallion was released back into the wild with a few other lucky stallions. My hope is that he can remain forever free in his home in Adobe Town.