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Topic Closedhorses - living compasses?

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TasunkaWitko View Drop Down
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aka The Gipper

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Direct Link To This Post Topic: horses - living compasses?
    Posted: 14 June 2003 at 06:09

i have heard and read that horses are like living compasses, and can back-trail with a precision which is uncanny. any truth to this?

how does a horse's sense of direction compare with a mule's?

 



Edited by TasunkaWitko
TasunkaWitko - Chinook, Montana

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 June 2003 at 06:33
Yup.  Average horse ain't as good at directions as yer average mule.  Some horses are better than others.  Seems to be that the lead mare ALWAYS has a good sense of direction.  Many younger ones have trouble, specially with snow on the ground.  If I was lost in the mountains, and cut some horse tracks, I'd follow 'em.

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TasunkaWitko View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 June 2003 at 06:39

mule -

i came across this reading o'connor's book, when he said pretty much the same thing that you did. he said that anytime he and the horse disagereed on the "right direction" to go, he let the horse have its way, and always ended up back at camp.

TasunkaWitko - Chinook, Montana

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 June 2003 at 06:34

A couple years ago in the Selway, I had a horse picketed to a stake in the meadow (don't ever use a bungie cord on a picket stake except for training purposes).  I had hobbles on my paint pack horse, but he broke the hobbles when he was getting up after rolling so I let him graze loose (don't ever let a dominate bully graze loose).  All the horses were grazing and content so the bully had to stir things up a bit... he sped towards the picketed horse and ran into its picket rope and stretched out the bungie cord with such force that it pulled up the stake and shot it hard at the picketed horse.  The horse spooked after getting smacked with the stake and he sped off to the trail... and the the paint and another loose horse followed him.  With amazing speed and agility for a 40 year old wearing Whites pacs, I sprinted for the trail to cut them off but didn't get there in time to catch the spooked horse... but I caught the the other two. 

There was a fork in the trail and the spooked horse took the correct fork back to the truck, but second guessed himself and turned around and went down the wrong fork... which took him deeper into the wilderness.  We had taken two trips to pack everything in and he still got lost on his own. 

Normally horses are real good at going back to the truck or camp, but so am I.  If I ever got lost I would trust the horse, but only if I was lost. 

 

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 June 2003 at 06:36

I will make sure to remember to always follow the mules when i am on a hunting trip involving horses and mules.

NH_Hunter

 

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 June 2003 at 14:23
We have an old white mule in our string. We turn him lose and follow himback to camp. We have done it several times in snow that you couldn;t see through and in the pitch dark of night
Saddlesore
If God wanted you to walk and carry things on your back, He would not have invented stirrups and pack saddles
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