CARBONADO FARM, LAUREL, MONTANA
Carbonado Farm is located in South Central Montana. We are a small facility striving to produce natural, willing, and sensible Tennessee Walking Horses for sale. We are home to NFF Echo's Blue Moon, a TWH Heritage certified stallion, one of only a handful of stallions with an unbroken top line tracing to Society's Man.
At Carbonado Farm it is essential that our horses be sensible as well as natural, as we actively compete at horseback field trialing along with using our horses around cattle and in the mountains.
About ten years ago I began selling started horses to help pay for my hobby of horse back field trialing. I compete in Regions 9, 10, and 14 of the AFTCA (Amatuer Field Trial Club of America). These regions encompass Alberta, Saskatchewan, British Columbia, Montana, Idaho, Washington, and Oregon. We compete at horseback bird hunting competitions so our horses need to have stamina as well as be smooth, for we will compete all day for numerous days. Our horses need to be calm riding in the gallery (the group of spectators) and at a moments notice be willing and able to run down a wayward dog. Then the horse has to be able to calm back down so as to ride along in the gallery. The horses need to be sturdy to take the daily grind. They must be surefooted because we compete from the steep hillsides of the western states to the badger hole infested prairies of Canada. The horses need to be relaxed enough to travel many miles without fretting themselves and going off their feed and water. Most of all, the horses need to be sensible so they can take all the excitement that comes along with field trialing, eg: large groups of horses, sometimes numbering in the hundreds, dogs running about, handlers yelling at their dogs, whistles, birds flushing (oftentimes from underneath the horses), and gunfire.
Left: Flushing birds over the dog, Right: Getting ready for the break away
Field Trial at Sunnyside, WA
When I started out I used Paso Finos for a year or two as a friend of mine had these. Over time I switched to Walking Horses and have even had a few Fox Trotters. The Walking Horses' temperament seemed the most suited to what we do. My Paso Finos had trouble remaining calm with all that goes on. The Walking Horses also held up better to the daily workload as they were heavier built. It was easier to resell the Walking Horses to fellow field trialers as their temperament was much better suited to our sport, and they were of a size that more field trialers were comfortable with.
The first Walking Horses I started out with were of modern show breeding. They were more level headed than the Paso Finos but I soon found that there were even MORE level headed Walkers to be had. I started buying more grade Walking Horses from a gentleman who had stock that had been brought north years ago by professional field trialers coming north to train in the summer. These Walkers were heavier boned than the show bred Walkers and had a calmer temperament. Over the years I would continue to pick up show bred horses and either start or restart them. It was after dealing with the poor temperaments of several of these modern bred Walkers that I realized I wanted to stay away from much of the common breeding. After reading an article in the VOICE magazine, I began finding out all I could about Walkers from breeders affiliated with the Tennessee Walking Horse Heritage Society.
I decided to give one of the Heritage Society's horses a try. I bought a four-year-old gelding that had some groundwork done with him, NFF Wilson's Dan Oliver, a son of Echo's Star Gray Wilson. From the first time I got on Ollie, I new he had what I was looking for. After two rides in my corral, he was riding mountain trails, overlooking raging mountain rivers. I was hooked! I bought a full brother to him, NFF Echo's Blue Moon, which was a stallion, with the plan of breeding him to a mare of old bloodlines that I had purchased from the same farm I purchased Ollie from.
NFF Wilson's Dan Oliver aka, Ollie
With only a month's work on him, Ollie performed better than any horse I had taken to a field trial. Every trial I went to, someone tried to purchase him, but I needed him for the remainder of the season and held on to him until the final trial I attended of the year before selling him. In the meantime, I started Moon. I had been apprehensive about owning a stallion,but Moon belied every misconception I had about stallions. Moon was as friendly as any horse I have ever owned. I was able to turn him out with my geldings and he would just spend the day grazing with them. I would take him out training dogs, and he acted as if he was born with gunfire and birds flushing all about. Moon's temperament is such that I can have a mare in heat tied up, and walk him right by her, or have him breed her. He will do what is asked of him.
As I was so impressed with the first Heritage Walking Horses I had purchased, I decided to purchase Heritage mares to breed to Moon. As Moon is by Echo's Star Gray Wilson, I sought out mares that should breed well to him. I purchased a filly by Society's Dan Allen, a filly by Society's Lee Allen, a filly by Red Bud's Rambling Slim, two mares by Red Bud's Rascal, one mare by Bud's Sterling Bullet, and one mare by Chance's Goldust H. These mares and fillies have so far fulfilled my expectations. They are well built, friendly, and have willing attitudes, and are all extremely enjoyable to ride. My only problem so far is having to decide which mare or two I will take to a trial along with Moon.
You can take it for whatever it is worth, but I fully believe these Heritage Walking Horses are much friendlier, easier going, and natural gaited. I used to buy started show culls to break and resell as field trial horses, and their gait was never as consistent, nor was the attitude as dependable.
Big Sky Open Shooting Dog Classic at Circle, MT
Left to Right
3rd Blackhawk's Last Call, Steve Grundmeyer, Reno, NV
2nd Ruby Hill George, Shannon Nygard, Bozeman, MT
1st Rambling Away, Austin Turley, Laurel, MT
Riding in the mountains and some of the scenery near Billings, Mt
Carbonado Farm recently had visitors - two young boys, Jacob Boiman on the left, and Jordan Boiman with Michelle leading on the right, from Eureka, California, who got their very first horse ride on board Taylor's Merrybelle!
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Summer Ride in the Beartooth Mountains