Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Curt Pate Stockmanship Clinic

Curt Pate Stockmanship Clinic
The El Paso, Texas- Las Cruces New Mexico region was fortunate enough to have a Curt Pate Horsemanship for Stockmanship clinic hosted by Marcy Ward of nearby New Mexico State University on 2 August 2017. Curt has been doing stocksmanship clinics for more than a decade teaching emphasizing stockmanship practices and methods that benefit the cattle and in turn benefits the rancher or feed lot owner. He also starts colts and brought along his Hawaiian tree saddle that he picked up in Hawaii starting colts years ago. That Curt in the picture at right wearing that Greely Hat he's pretty happy with. 

From 8 to noon eight of us rode with Curt concentrating on hooking our reins to our horse's feet and paying particular attention to where our and our horses' balance was going through forward movement with emphasis on straightness, backing, and turns on the hind end and fore end. One thing Curt did that was new to me was sitting with quiet horses and using our seat and body position to subtly shift the horse's weight from his front feet to his back and to the front again.

Halfway through we brought some of NMSU's cows into the muddy arena (this is the rainy season down here) and worked on holding them a rodear, and adjusting that rodear using subtly pressure by gradually closing on the group, as well as facing up with the cows and backing away to get the cattle hooked on to our horse.

Rodear is a Spanish term meaning to surround.  It is used to hold cows in a group when fences are not present or used to keep cows separated from others.

Curt had each rider ride a circle around the rodear to experiment with just how much distance was enough to get the cows' attention and how much was enough to push them back or turn away. It was interesting to see the cow's curiosity with a couple of the younger horses who had never worked cattle before.

We also split the group up into two groups of four riders each with four cows, and each group managed their half herd and moved them from one spot to another in the arena holding them at Curt's direction.

Photo at left is Curt discussing the little roan mare of Dr. Ward's he was riding.  I have no pictures on horseback as Curt keep us pretty busy and I had no time to shag my camera. 

I have read about Curt Pate for over a decade now. He is the author if the Western Horseman book "Ranch Horsemanship".  It certainly was to our benefit to ride with him and listen to what he had to say. To read some of what Curt Pate has to say about horsemanship, stockmanship and good stewardship of the land and cattle, visit this site - Curt Pate Stockmanship. The latest, posted on 3 August, talks about stewardship of the land we are entrusted with. You can also see Curt's schedule for upcoming events for the Beef Quality Assurance program.

No comments:

Post a Comment