Badger has been busy. He recently participated in a local cattle drive, where the cows are driven through some main roads. He got the job done – like he had done it 100 times before.
Then there was the Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital Men’s Ride…oh yes, Badger was there too, steady as he goes.
Branding, gathering, roping…he does all that. Put in the sorting pens, where calves and cows are separated…yep, no problem…will do it all day long! Then the next day, he will walk up to the fence in the morning ready to do it all over again.
Todd Utterback, who has been riding Badger, since Jan 2011, said he knew that Badger was a “goodin”, after one of the first times he took him out for a gathering back in the real “BACK” country. They were going down a ravine and through some brush. After they got just outside the brush, Badger came to a complete stop . Todd gave him a nudge with his spurs and Badger remained stock-still. Todd happened to glance down and what he saw was a nightmare of tangled barbed wire wrapped around Badgers back legs and up his tail and between his back legs.
At this point Todd was wishing he hadn’t given Badger that nudge with his spurs, but he didn’t have to worry…Badger never moved a muscle. Todd has a special whistle that he uses to let his father and other riders know he is in real trouble. Well, he let that whistle go long and loud. His father, Skip Utterback, came at a gallop up behind Badger who still had not moved a muscle.
Todd said he couldn’t believe his luck that Badger – this green Morgan Horse, was standing stock-still. He was wondering, when the blow up was going to happen, but it just kept…not happening. At this point, Todd asked his father, Skip, to see if he could untangle the barbed wire, but Skip said "no way" it was too tangled up in his tail and wrapped up his back legs twisted all around.
Todd considered jumping off, but he decided to put his trust into Badgers good manners and level mind. He asked his father, if he thought he could cut the wire off him with the wire cutters. At this point, Skip said he was thinking everyone involved was going to end up badly injured. Skip inched up under Badgers belly and started cutting.
All this time, Badger is standing stock-stick-still with only his ears moving, while listening to Skip and Todd. Skip said the first snap of the wire cutters was the worst. He thought for sure Badger might blow, but Badger stood still – not moving an inch. After 5 or 6 snips, Skip realized that they all might get out of this ok. In fact, as he pulled the wire out from around his legs and tail and butt cheeks, there was only a couple of drops of blood and Badger still hadn’t moved a muscle.
When all the wire was cleared, all three – Badger, Todd and Skip, let out a big breath. Then, Skip slapped Todd on the shoulder and said…. "You lucky sumbitch. I thought we were all goners fer sure. Damn Morgan didn’t even blink…acted like an ole ranch horse been stuck in the wire a hundred times. Todd grinned, spit and said, "YEP, he’s a “goodin” alright."
It’s been all sunshine and rainbows from there. Todd, who is reluctant to say anything much, will brag that this buckskin he has going good will out-ride, out-work and out-last any three of his well-bred quarter horses in a day. All he ever needs is to bring the buckskin and he gets that job done with speed and style…smooth to ride and easy on the eyes.
Todd has now taken on a few other younger Morgan horses. In fact, they happen to be two of Badger’s daughters, OGO Waers GoldStar and OGO Circle H RoseWood. They too, seem to be going the same good road as Badger, so it’s all good news.
Badger will finish up this year’s riding at the end of October. Then it’s vacation time for him. 10 acres are waiting him to be turned out on. He will get to relax and vacation for November and December, then back to work in Janauary, when those cattle need gathering, branding and vetting. The sorting will also need to start and the bulls will need to be moved. There are lots more adventures for Badger ahead.
Wendy LeGate, Owner
OGO Morgan Horses