This is beautiful Magpie. He’s a wild Nokota stud from North Dakota.
For those who don’t know, these wild horses living in the area when they decided it was against the law to have wild equines in Theodore Roosevelt national park. They were up for extermination. Two brothers Frank and Leo Kuntz rescued as many as they could and keep them as wild herds today. More in depth info is available on www.nokotahorse.org
I was introduced to Nokota’s thru Jack Lieser, one of the most phenominal people I have ever met in my entire life and not to mention an out of this world horse and people trainer (If he can train me, he can train anyone) he hosts Nokota Colt Starts as one of his programs. I’ve been to two, signed up for my second and third this year. Wish I could do more but right now it’s only three times a year and I always miss the Ohio one.
I’ve written about them before in prior posts, the experiance is unbeleivable….and I don’t mean that as a “hey man that’s unbeleivable” type of unbeleivable….I mean that in the true sense of the word. I sucked in every moment of both my clinics all the while in awe that I was here, doing this, that I COULD do this and it was real and the reactions of the horses were real…not a dream. It is one of those experiances you HAVE to experiance for yourself and I think everyone should…..alright enough of that, I’m writing about one horse, one Nokota… Magpie.
Magpie is 5 years old now I think….maybe 6. He is a stud not a gelding, maybe a stallion at this point….I would have to ask Leo about that.
He is a dominent horse, usually head horse and if not then fighting for that position! Doesn’t move his feet much and makes a lot of noise when he’s trying to tell another horse what is what. Most horses agree with what he says.
Working with people he a totally different being. Granted he had been saddled in a clinic before the first one I attended in TX. He handled everything like a Champ. Leo was working with him in the TX clinic and they were absolutely singing together. I got to rope him….okay, really Jack had to do it for me because Magpie was messing with me since he could see instantly I could be fooled back then, but then I was able to do some accept the human, rubbing on him, picking up his feet, jumping around his back…..this horse was so calm and accepting I was like “Is he still awake?” He took crossing the tarp and being introduced to the bouncy ball like he’s been doing it for years. He is so SMART it was incredible.
I told the brothers that I loved that horse, so in North Dakota they made a special trip to round him up and bring him along with the other colts. It was like I had just been with him yesterday….5 months had passed and he was acting like this is an old hat to him. Quickly got him to the saddled point. Jack asked “Jen, do you want to work with Magpie”?”Hell Yeah”! was my response.
Because he’s so easy going it’s hard for me to remember this is a wild horse….I messed up a few times, once I lost the lead and there’s Magpie running down the fence with my rope twisting wildly in the air behind him. Jack makes a point to tell the class, don’t keep pushing when your horse softens, YOU then need to soften……”Oh, DUH….I know this so why didn’t I do it?” I think to myself…..Thankfully, he’s a left brain so he found some grass and seemed to forgive the whole experiance of me being an utter dumbass.
I was soon up in the saddle after that. He rides like a dream! The softest lift to the rein to turn, the minimal pressure it took to get him into a trot…I was riding Magpie!! And not just riding mind you, we were floating! This wild horse, completly in tact without brain surgery (gelding) was riding better then most horses I have ever been on in my life.
I was grinning ear to ear. I cannot even put into words the connection and willingness TO connect I felt in this horse, the intelligence I felt from him and the understanding. I will never forget it for the rest of my days.
After we were done, we ended up watching Jack demo something and Magpie thought it was a good idea to nap right next to me while the demo was going. That was great, he felt that safe with me he could fall asleep right next to me. What an honor.
If I had the means right now I would own him. I don’t yet and probably won’t anytime in the near future. Maybe that’s good, maybe I would bore the shit out of him and he would resort to messing with me daily…I don’t know but what I do know is this is one truly special spirt. I hope he finds a great home soon, he deserves it! He needs someone kind, willing to listen cuz he won’t put up with being ignored and someone exciting, someone that can give him a lot to think about, someone he can partner up with and never fear and he will be the best horse they ever have the pleasure of spending time with.
This guy Magpie is a true Gem.