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When Linda and I gave up horseback riding, five years or so ago, we thought we'd never be back. We sold our horses, truck, trailer and tack; everything. NOW that we are both retired we discovered we had a desire to take up the sport again. Our main criteria (for a horse) this time was calm, friendly and healthy.

After searching the internet we found we found an add for a buckskin on Craigs List; 8 year old gelding, 15 hands.  The price was way low compared to the equestrian sales web sites so I eMailed the owner and asked for pictures.  Once I saw the pictures I knew I had found something special.   He is a horse named simply "Bayo" (Spanish for buckskin) from Hesperia, CA; a town in the Mojave Desert.
 I named him Tango.                               

We started right away and drove all day Sunday, arriving in Hesperia by 3:00 PM that afternoon.  The horse turned out to be a big, friendly guy who was a little tense and confused.  He appeared to be around 8 years old, a little taller than advertised.  He had belonged to a Mexican man who had fallen on hard times - and had sold him to Adam (the present owner).  Adam's kids named him Bayo (buckskin).

Adam wanted a horse that was pretty spirited and that would move out when he asked.  Bayo didn't understand what Adam wanted - so he would nearly always just do the Spanish walk.  We took the big Mexican saddle off and replaced it with my dressage saddle.  Then we replaced the curb bit with my Baucher snaffle (on my bridle).  Tango moved better right away.  (Notice the name change - along with the attitude change.)

After we were convinced at the gentleness of Tango, I mounted up and went for a test ride.  I belive my leg was farther back than Adam's because the horse did not offer the Spanish walk.  We walked, then cantered a bit.  When I tried for the trot he was extremely tense, like he wasn't supposed to do THAT!  We settled for a kind of trot/walk/shuffle.
Then Linda saddled up and Tango walked right out without wringing his tail.  

Notice, in the video (link on the right), instead of trotting Tango seems to walk in front and trot in back similar to a Missouri Fox Trotter.  Hopefully, he will learn to trot like a normal horse.  He did have a nice comfortable canter.

We were very pleased with the horse and elected to buy him without a vet check.  The only equine vet for the area is 30 miles away and he doesn't do house calls.  

Links to some youtube videos.
Dave's test ride.
Linda's test ride.

Trina - from Epona Farms here in Wilton - contacted a friend who will pick up Tango Thursday morning, load him into her horse trailer and bring him up.  He should be in his stall at Epona by Thursday night.  

We are scheduled to have a big rain storm from Thursday morning thru the following Sunday.  Sigh . . . .

I will be keeping a journal as the training of Tango goes forward.
It should be interesting.

Tango is very free in his front shoulders and oversteps at the walk by about a foot.

After arriving in his new home in Wilton Tango seemed to accept everything with a ho-humm attitude.  For the first week things have been pretty easy.  

On January 7th his training started with an introduction to the covered arena (ho humm), introduction to the half bosal halter (ho humm), introduction to the lunge whip (ho humm) and introduction to the lunge line (ho humm).

He lunged both directions at the trot with no sign of the shuffle we saw earlier.  He has a nice, relaxed trot.  He doesn't understand my cues yet but he would halt and change directions like lunging was old hat.
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