Our horses grow up to at least 4 years free in large herds in the corals. Mostly in wintertime the serious side of their life begins – they get seperated into stables, learning what halters are and get accustomed in our Roundpen to a first training. Since they had the connection to the herd and were living in a natural ranking, they are fixed relatively fast on humans and learn daily in addition. Soon we can work with them at the large riding place and let them get used to saddles and later to the rider.
At the beginning they are ridden with a combination of snaffle bit and “cereton” (which works over the nose), which gets changed against a loose Hackemore, as soon as they know the basic assistance. Also they are only a short time in the stables and as soon as they are confidenced, they come again together into the coral. Now they become used to the “day by day” of the Finca, go along in the group on easy rides, getting reliance by the experienced horses and increasing their endurance and musculature on easy climbing scales. It is amazing how cool and experienced they are after a few months – a basis they gained in our breeding and the achieved confidence into the group and the rider.
They have at least one year time to develop their equilibrium on rides in the surroundings of the finca with experienced riders. Andalusians are late bloomers and evolve until they are seven years old. One should not expect too much in their younger years if, in the long term, healthy horses of a high endurance are expected. When they are having the proper condition, are diligent and enjoy work, we take them to the beach ride or to the 2-day-trail, where they get used to our truck and other corals. It depends on each and every one of them, how long it takes to escort us on their first trails. So they are gaining their first experiences partly being ridden, partly coming along loosely, always being attached carefully and getting their recreational breaks at the finca.
Also the, in peak condition, older trail horses are controlled and get holidays, if we notice that they need it, or participate at easier trails. There are not only the long distances on partially very difficult area, but also the gift to adjust themselves again and again to their new riders and to build up a personal relationship with them, which makes them really special partners. It is not only the condition and riding ability, which constitute an experienced trail horse, but also their flexibility – they grow up for example on the finca with mineral water and have to get used on the daily routes to other water sources and have to adapt to new places every day. You often see inexperienced horses “dance around” at the breaks, meanwhile the older ones relax or take a nap. It is amazing to see them every time – after work is done and they are going home – push into the truck.
Some of these horses are taked home by their riders, after having inspired them with their nobles and heart.
But thanks to the large number of horses we have one for every flavour – from the very experienced quiet trail horse to a playing youngster with a lot of temperament.
Our older professionals have so much experience that they take away any anxiety and give confidence to our beginners. They do not have to work on the long trails any more but they enjoy the easy rides around the finca, having their place in the herd which holds them fit up to high ages. A lot of theses mares that have been working long years on trails, we are breeding with – this gives us the guarantee for healthy and powerful youngsters on the future trails on Andalusia.
In all those years we haved worked with our horses, experiencing each day completely different situations, our respect for them constantly grew and, however, they surprise us again and again. They are partners, which give so much and require very few.
If you get to know them, you will appreciate them!