In September of 2020, I met Abelardo and his family for the first time when they were getting a drink of water in the morning in the Red Desert Complex in Wyoming. I was stunned by his beautiful markings, and enjoyed watching his large family, which included a cremello mare and foals, and a grey mare and her black foal. They were shy but it was clear he was a ham.
The next time I found his family was in the middle of the 2020 Red Desert Complex roundup. after days of watching horses that I had known and loved for years, seeing this beautiful family still free brought my heart joy. I sat with them and was able to keep going.
Days later after I had gone home, I saw a video of Abelardo being released back into Lost Creek. I was very happy to see him go free, but very sad for the loss of his family. The next spring in 2021 as I was driving in the early morning, I saw him all alone, not even with other stallions.
I saw him again later last year still alone.
My first trip into Lost Creek this year I saw at a distance a beautiful palomino pinto mare with a long mane and beautiful spunky red pinto foal by her side…followed by Abelardo!
It was so exciting to see that he was making a new family for himself. So many broken families, scattered horses, lonely stallions in what had been an area full of wild horse families had made it hard for me to visit this area full of ghosts.
It’s important for me to find the joy when spending time with wild horses in this time of upheaval and uncertainty. I hope that the lucky few that remain in the Red Desert Complex can live out their lives wild and free.