So difficult to find a PP experienced trail horse for sale. Can't seem to convince Jody to give up Junior! (ha). Many advertised for sale as trail horses, when explored further, really DON"T have the trail miles put on them. At my age, I want a been there done that. But they are hard to find!
A really made trail horse like Junior or my late El Sinchi Roca take a long time to get to that level (I figured about 300-500 miles in NATRC competition to get the variety of experiences). Yet potential buyers seem to think that since they aren't show horses they must be really cheap: $500 to $1000. So trainers have no incentive to develop an experienced trail horse.
I don't think that at all! I know how much time it takes to get an experienced trail horse. And I don't mind paying for that.
What I run into is a horse who perhaps was not all the owner/breeder wanted it to be in the show ring so it is marketed as a "trail horse" with little or no experience as a trail horse. I see both sides, but I think there is a market for well trained trail horses. For example, there is a group in Las Vegas that brings in and sells gaited horses from Kentucky, Tennessee, etc. They pick good quality ones and sell them for an average of $6200. There have been many times I have seen one on their website (they put many different videos of the horse, going over a tarp, through water, gaiting, trailering, etc) and I find one or two I think are ones I want to look at and before I can make travel arrangements to get there, the horse is sold. Seriously, I have been looking at them for well over a year now, and they sell everyone of them easily. So there must be a market. I never see anything like this for trail PP's. There is another group in Texas, (harder to get to for me), but they do the same thing, they bring in really good quality horses and they literally tape the horses while on the trail, the gal takes a flip camera with her so you can see everything the horse does on the trail and the situations they put the horses through so you know what it is like and the work that has gone into it. She adds commentary as she is going along. So you know it is worth the money they are asking and not a show reject. Smart.
I have no doubt that other breeds and grades are doing this. The Rocky Mountain breeders and trainers in this area are selling a lot of horses this way. I just don't see it happening in the PP world. The emphasis is still on shows and ribbons accumulated.
Well, that is too bad. Sounds like you are saying I am wasting my time. :)
I don't know if my edited reply got posted, but check out D-Ranch's gelding, Cantador
I bred a son of his (before he was gelded) and my friend owns his brother, whom he has used for NATRC and trail trials. All have been very sensible horses.
Thank Lynn! I will.
I also have come to find this true. I researched breeders on the west coast for a breeder who specializes in trail and found Curry Ranch in Oregon. They train their horses first and foremost for, and use them extensively for trail. Obviously that doesn't help you where you are located, but maybe if you search for a breeder who specializes in training for trail you can find a good trail horse within your area. Realize it is not going to be an easy search, it took me quite a long time to find the one in Oregon, but then I wasn't in a hurry to find one since I have a few years before I'm ready to acquire a new trail horse.
I don't think there are any breeders around here that breed for trail, that is the problem. Where in Oregon? What is most likely going to happen is that I will end up with a Rocky Mtn or spotted saddle horse that is well gaited and has trail experience and give up on the PP.
If you could find a trainer to "tune up" an already saddle broke PP and put some trail training on him, I have several horses bred for trail at my place(their dams have substantional NATRC CTR mileage, and their sires are enfrenadura or endurance Peruvians). Due to medical issues I can no longer ride a green horse to put the training on them myself. Strong horses are available if you are willing to deal with the training yourself.
Lynn, I have the same issue as you. I cannot take on green or strong horses at this point in my life anymore. My trainer is leaving at the end of the month as she is having a baby. So that is why I am looking for a been there done that horse. And BTW, the Curry Ranch has sold most of their horses. :(
Laura, They are in Bonanza, OR, near Klamath Falls area.
No, they don't have the quantity of horses they use to, they have reduced breedings due to the economy, but the few they have are very nice, quality horses. They have just added three new geldings to the sales page.