Monday, December 8, 2008

Cattle Sorting

I spent Sunday afternoon at a sorting. For those of you not literate in horse lingo, that's a cattle working competition that is probably one of the best ways to have fun on a horse. I didn't go to participate, though. I went for photographs. And I got a bunch, including the one above that will probably become a painting.
I used to compete in sortings on PJ's dam before her seizures became too frequent and made her unsafe to ride. PJ can work cattle, when she wants to, but no where near as good as her momma, so for now I remain content just watching. But I have to admit that my legs were itching to climb on a horse....
The rules of sorting are as follows: Ten numbered calves, plus one un-numbered dummy calf are wandering around a small round pen which is connected to another round pen via a small opening. Two riders must "sort" the cattle in numerical order from one pen to another - in order and without letting any calves "leak" back. And do it in a prescribed amount of time - usually 30 to 90 seconds. If a calf goes through out of order or one comes back to join its herdmates, the run is over and does not count. The team with the most calves moved with no penalties in the time allotted wins. Every team pays to compete, and part of the money goes to the cattle supplier and part goes out in winnings. And a good time is had by all!
All skill level of horsemanship can have fun doing this - young and old alike. All you need is a horse that reins fairly well and isn't afraid of cows.
Don't forget to check on my paintings up for grabs on eBay! I am really cleaning house!
2 Timothy 2:5
Similarly, if anyone competes as an athlete, he does not receive the victor's crown unless he competes according to the rules.


Rick Nilson said...

I used to do stuff like that. Only I used a bunch of gates and I didn't need numbers on 'em.

Caren said...

You are fortunate to have such great opportunity to get those photo references for your art. I mostly paint horses without people on them, but I love western subject matter and am enjoying your blog and paintings.