Trail horse possible buy?
Saw this TB up for sale not too far away. I had been looking at quarter horses, but there is something I like about this guy. He sounds really good minded for a youngster (3yro) from his description and is already going on the trails.
He needs some work, he is rather heavy on his forehand, but does he looks like he has potential?
Almost any horse has potential to be a trail horse. (Except mine, lol) does the buyer want him to go to an english home? Since most TBs do. Go out and try him, see how you like him.
Nice looking fellow - good substance, short strong pasterns, strong topline, decent shoulder. I don't see anything to limit this horse as a trail horse if he has the mind for it (some TB can be rather flighty and spooky, but certainly not all). He might be handy for additional uses as well.
Nice horse. If you have the knowledge and ability to work with a youngster, I'd say jump on the chance. At his age, he can't be a finished horse, so he still may have some spook and buck in him. He really does seem like a nice horse.
Here comes my critique.
When cutting the horse in thirds, he is very well balanced which is great, because one of the most common conformation faults is a horse that is to long in the back-which is not the case here. This gelding is definitely build downhill, but thats something you can definitely work with. I wouldn't be concerned about it.
The length of his neck is the proper length for the size of his body. The length of his neck should be the length of one third of his body, which in is the case. The neck is very under developed and is really lacking top line, but having said that if this horse only does trails it wont be doing any flatwork that would allow him to build that top line. The base of his neck is level with the shoulder which is where you want it to be. A well tied neck is important for good balance.
This gelding has a low stifle. It should be at about the same level as the elbow, which isnt the case, because how downhill he is. He also has a low hock. In this case it would give him more power from behind should you ever decide to take him into dressage or other disciplines. Having a lower set stifle and hocks also means his hamstrings along the back of the hindquarters can be longer and stronger.
I like the legs of this guy. He's big bones which I really like. You want longer humerus to have more leverage therefor having more power. It will also help with the range of motion. A long humerus is always more desirable. Its hard to see the knee. It looks flat on the front with no roundness or bumps. The knee joint itself seems to be large and well support this horse's built. There is lots of space for the flexor tendon as well. It is in line with the canon bone and forearm. More pictures would have allowed us to see this horse from all angles.
The pasterns are slopped properly. It will allow him to withstand hard work on tougher surfaces an rougher terrain which is what you want for what you would like to do. It also shows us that proper pasterns will put less stress on the tendons, making it less likely to get injuries. Pasterns that are to long are usually weak. This horse as expected, is under developed in the hind end. Is this horse sickle hocked? Hard to tell if he is, or if it's how he is standing.
He has a decent shoulder. The slope of the shoulder, should be the same as the slope of the pasterns. It looks like he should have pretty smooth gaits based on that shoulder. Having a good slope to the shoulder, also tells us he will be able to have longer stride. A "normal" shoulder should be between 47-55 degrees.
Realistically any horse can become a trail horse. I think what you need to look at is probably more the temper of the horse than anything, and whether or not trails is enough to keep that horse happy.
However if you are talking about rugged trail work, almost any horse does NOT have potential - least of all most (not all, of course) Thoroughbreds with frail hooves, bone, and joints.
Please don't think of trail work as only just moseying down the path. For extended and rugged trail work you need strong bone and joints, hard hooves, a short back and thick neck, a powerful rear end, endurance, and a calm and steady, although willing, disposition...
The term trail horse has a broad range of definitions. It can mean anything from going at a walk 2 miles down a flat dirt road, or it can mean extreme mountain climbing.
he has nice shoulders for a 3yo. He seems to be a good mover from the video. As a 3yo you will still have some training to do with him But it looks like he has a good start. not knowing you skill level 3 and 4 year olds can be a handful at times, if you are up to it he looks like to good horse (from what I have seen) I would go and look at him and ride him and see.
I would want to do some rougher mountain trails with him. We do ride some local parks that are just moseying down the path, but I don't want to be limited to just that. We like to camp, and have been planning to do more traveling. I also would like to get into doing some trail challenges and I have as thought about mounted shooting for years, but in reality probably will never do either!
I also had my eye on another QH that might be a bit more versatile as far as doing the other events, but seems quiet minded for the trails.
I originally was looking for younger horses to work with and ride my paint mare in the meantime, but at the moment we can't even get her sound enough to ride at all. I have not looked at the QH yet, but seems like something I could get on and go now.
As far as my experience, I have had horses for about 22 years. I have a lot more experience English, but have been riding solely western for the last couple years. I do have neck problems, so I don't want anything hot and crazy.
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