The Western States Horse Expo is coming to Sacramento which is about an hour away from where I live.
I torture myself and go there every year. I mean, it wouldn’t be torture if I was made of money. But, I am not. So, I walk around the entire place and make mental notes, drooling over all the things I’d like to buy or try. I also chat with any vendors that interest me – while they are still willing, excited and awake (you should see them droop by Day 4 of the Expo!).
My strategy is to go back the next day to delve deeper into everything that I’ve noted so I can separate the chaff from the wheat.
And then, like a true bargain hunter, I go back on the last day and make whatever deals I can…
But, it isn’t just the mind boggling array of everything horsey that keeps me going back every year… I love the Western States Horse Expo for a few reasons. Least of which is that it always falls around my birthday so I can strongarm Hubby into going with me to certain events. And, it is those ‘certain events’ that make me titter with anticipation!
SPEAKING OF CERTAIN EVENTS…
OK, first off, if any of you want me to get something for you while I am at the Expo, just ask in the ‘contact us’ item in the sidebar. I am not promising anything, but if I can, I will.
The most exciting Horse Expo event for me is the DAVE HAMMOND HORSE SALE.
THE DAVE HAMMOND HORSE SALE (I have no affiliation)
Let me explain. I am like most of you. If there is a horse sale, I’m suspicious.
How many times have we been to a sale only to find out that the horses were drugged or in some other way misrepresented? I know that most horse sales that I have attended have broken my heart several times over.
So… when I attended the Western States Horse Expo a few years ago and saw the signs for the Dave Hammond Horse Sale, I went just to be pissed off. I’m sorry to be so blunt, but I wanted to see how these particular horses would be misrepresented.
WHAT I SAW
Since it was my birthday, I dragged Hubby to the sale area. We sat in the bleachers with a beer each. I didn’t get a paddle.
The auction was gearing up to begin. Because I didn’t have a paddle, I didn’t have a program. “Whatever”, I thought to myself…
And then it started.
The first few horses came out and they were really beautiful, well trained and healthy. Hmmmmmm.
The next few horses came out and they were even nicer.
It was at about this time that I started to really listen to the auctioneer’s banter. And, honestly, he was very knowledgeable and said things that you’d want to hear at a real horse auction… He spoke of the owner or trainer, he spoke about the type of gear the horse was wearing, he spoke of the build and lineage of the horse… stuff you don’t hear at most horse sales.
I looked over at Hubby and he was so totally engrossed in what he was watching that he didn’t even hear me say that, “I might go get a paddle”. He was absolutely caught up in the event. And so was I.
Horse after horse came through and my head was whirling with the amount of incredible horse flesh presented before me. Trained horses. Well-bred horses. Horse I’d like to own.
I kept telling myself that something was wrong. I was sure these horses were drugged or something. Yet, they were ridden through the arena and put through their paces without showing any signs of lag or drugs.
Hmmmmm. Could I possibly be watching a legitimate sale of legitimate ranch, roping, reining, cattle, cutting, youngster, brood stock… horses?! The more I watched, the more I thought that I wished I had put down the beer and gotten a paddle.
I’m not much of an officianado of Quarter Horses or any kind of Western horse. However, I know good horse flesh and good conformation. I also know Tom Foolery.
There were really nice drafts and mules and horses, and babies, and broodmares and mammas with foals… you name it.
This was mostly all good horse flesh with no Tom Foolery. My personal opinion was that these horses would never have been sold like this unless the horse market was pretty soft (which it is) and without the integrity of Dave Hammond behind the sale. These weren’t your backyard equines.
At the end, I was upset that I never took the time to get a paddle. Seriously, I was so engrossed, I didn’t want to leave and miss anything.
I vowed to come back the next year and preview the horses (the day before) to see if they were on the up and up.
THE FOLLOWING YEAR
So I went back last year except I went the day before to preview the horses.
None seemed drugged. All seemed healthy and relatively happy, even though they were in a strange place with strange noises.
And the next day, Hubby and I attended the sale with our beer in hand, ready to enjoy the show. Hubby actually came without a fight, that is how awesome of an event this sale was to him.
We were on the edges of our bench seats again! We left very upset that, once again, we didn’t get a paddle! So many unbelievable horses went through without commanding a very high price. (This is good and bad because I always wonder if the ranches will not come again if their great horses sell so inexpensively…)
THIS YEAR (Saturday June 11th, 2011 Cal Expo, Sacramento, California)
*I’m so hoping the EHV-1 crisis will have subsided by the time of the Expo… This is what Dave Hammond himself said to me about the outbreak:
“We are monitoring the progress of the containment of the outbreak through the California Department of Agriculture and the USDA. We will follow the guidelines recommended by them and our Veterinarians. Including whether to hold the sale or cancel it. The current outbreak is limited so far to only horses that were at the cutting in Ogden, their stable mates and the same for horses that went to a cutting in Bakersfield. Our sale will not have any horses that went to either show or that were in any way exposed to those horses. In other words we will not have any horses that were exposed to EHV1. I have been doing the detective work to eliminate any horses that were entered in the sale and that are linked to Ogden or Bakersfield or that are even in barns of people that went to those two shows and do not have sick horses.”
…back to the blog…
This year I have decided to go without Hubby and to buy a paddle. We shall see.
But, I wanted you all to come with me… So, I’ve decided to show you a cross section of the sale.
Here is the website. Right now, there are 126 horses for sale. Not all have pictures but some have pictures AND videos!
A CROSS SECTION OF THE LINE-UP (click here to see the entire line-up)
I’ve cut and pasted the photos and descriptors from the actual website.
1) LL Truly A Cutter
Peaches was shown in Reined Cow Horse classes. She won the Junior Bridle Class at the Idaho Futurity. Currently shod but can go barefoot. My 87 year old father holds her for the farrier. She has been used for Trail Riding, gathering cattle, sorting, parades and Wild West shows. She also has been competing in Cowboy Mounted Shooting. She has won State Championships and has qualified for the World Championships 4 times. See her daily at the Cowboy Mounted Shooting Clinics at the Horse Expo!
Goliath is a gentle giant. This Belgian beauty is extremely friendly and personable. The perfect pet and work animal, he rides and drives. Goliath approaches every person and vehicle seeking affection. When we aren’t trail riding him under saddle, we are feeding him, and the horse herd, out of hay mangers in the middle of 1000 acres. Goliath will come to the call of his name, parallel park himself next to the feed bunk, un-haltered and completely loose, so two people can climb on his back and enjoy a view from nearly 18 hands. For more information visit 3mmules.com or call Michael at 541-891-1246.
3) Captain Jack
CJ would make the perfect family horse. He has been used extensively on a large cattle ranch, branding sorting, shipping and doctoring cattle outside. Don’t let his small size fool you. He can go all day and then some, yet is still plenty gentle for the kids to take to the 4-H horseshow, trail ride or Gymkhana. He is easy to shoe, bathe, trailer etc. Feel free to call Sophia at 530-957-3329 with any questions.
4) Mucho Lily Bar
Lily is a super sweet mare that has been used on the ranch to gather, doctor, and sort cattle. She has been used in all terrain including rocks, sage brush, steep mountains, desert, boggy pastures, fallen timber, creeks, streams, and rivers. She is super sure footed and very smooth to ride. Lily is a very fancy mare with lots of crome, she will give you her whole heart in anything asked of her. Lily is a gentle mare that wants to be your best friend. She is good to shoe, catch, and loads and hauls great. For more photos and information go to http://www.thomasonquarterhorses.com/ Thank you for your interest!
5) Sizzlin Kiwanie
“Sizzle” is a super fancy gelding with a great build. He is gentle, great to shoe, catch, load, and hauls great. He has the speed and agility to go on and make a super rope horse and the smooth pleasure lope to take you to the show arena. Sizzle had been used to rope and brand on. He has been used on the ranch to gather, doctor, and sort cattle in the steep mountains, sage brush, fallen timber, trees, desert, rocks, meadows, boggy fields, creeks, and streams. Sizzle has a nice handle and a great side pass. He is a fun horse to ride and great on the trails. If you are looking for something with color and can get the job done better not let Sizzle pass you by! For more information on him go to http://www.thomasonquarterhorses.com/ and Thank You for your time and interest!
6) Fever He
This is a beautiful filly sired by NRCHA Supreme Cow Horse and Leading Sire Playboys Buck Fever whose first 11 offspring have all been Futurity or Derby winners, earning over $244,000. This filly’s dam sired by NCHA Finalist and money earner Pavo De Peppy was a Northern California Reserve Halter Champion and High School Rodeo State Finals Qualifier in cutting and Team Roping. On the very bottom of the pedigree is a horse we raised by Mr San Peppy, Frisco Gene an outstanding cutting horse.
7) Night Chex Nic
She is a full sister to Lotso Chexn Nic winner of $2700, multiple buckles and saddles in working cowhorse, and reining. She has over a year of professional training. She rides great in the hills, gathering cattle, or in th arena. She hauls well and is a pleasure to have around.
8) Peppys Freckled Star
Sired by Soule Jule Star the producer of winners of over $732,000 and out of Peppy Lena Playgirl the produce of winners of $26,000. Very attractive mare, well built and great minded. “Penny” will ride, show at low levels or be an assett to your breeding program.
9) Cowgirl Nic
Everything about this filly is Golden. She has a sweet personality and can do attitude that goes well with the perfectly golden color. With a year of professional training on her , she is very cowy with a huge stop. She has been hauled a lot, turned back at cuttings and ridden our in the hills.
I’m sure there are horse sales everywhere… But, if you are able to come to the Western States Horse Expo, why not go to this sale as well. It is awesome. Or, come to this Dave Hammond sale and you can also browse the Expo… however you want to look at it.
I’ll be there. If you come, maybe we can even share a beer or soda and drool together!
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