A year ago we were living in Reno, Nevada, and one of my favorite places to hike was the Washoe County Regional Park at Hidden Valley. This park abuts public land managed by the Bureau of Land Management, where wild horses live. I won't go into the politics of mustang management here, but urge you to learn more about efforts to both save and destroy the herds grazing on OUR land. The BLM doesn't own the land it manages, nor do the ranchers who want the horses removed to make room for their stock. We do. You and I.
For now, though, I will simply show you some of my friends, members of a small band that is part of the larger Virginia Range Herd. I saw these horses almost every time I went to hike at Hidden Valley, and often they came very close to me. One in particular always came to see me up close and very personal when the band was close to where I was. Other times they were grazing far up the hills, but their presence, close or far away, was always thrilling.
|This yearling filly almost always came to see me when I went to Hidden Valley, and loved to be scratched and petted. I like to think she knew this was our last (for now) evening together. ©Sheila Boneham|
|Another shot of "my" filly, who I think of as Star. This is a wild and wild-born horse, remember. You can see from her interaction with my husband Roger how much she likes contact with people. ©Sheila Boneham|
|Mare and foal. ©Sheila Boneham|
|The little guy! ©Sheila Boneham|
|Mares and foals heading over the hill and into the canyon for the night. ©Sheila Boneham|
|The stallion again. He was far up the hill, following his mares and foals to the canyon for the night, but he's so handsome I had to crop in on him. ©Sheila Boneham|
|My last view of the stallion, following his family. ©Sheila Boneham|