Percheron for hunting/ mountain trail riding?

2rocky

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ID spud....Remember you are going to ride this horse all year (I'd hope) and there are a lot of fun things to do with a horse other than trail ride. A purebred draft is not going to have the same agility, and quickness that a QH, Morgan or Appaloosa would.

You are talking about a Semi Truck when you talk about a draft horse .

Many folks think of arena performance horses like cutters, reiners or rope horses...Those are Sports cars. (14-15 hand tall, 950-1000# QH's)

You want a 4 wheel drive truck you can take down the Highway to the two track. In my mind that is a a 15-16 hand 1100-1300# QH/Appy/Morgan or 1/4-1/2 draft. I draw the line at no more than 1/2 draft...Hope that metaphor helps.

Get your lessons BEFORE you buy a horse. If someone has a horse you can lease or borrow all the better.

Don't get wrapped up in breed. ESPECIALLY PUREBREDS. Search the want ads for variations of:
Kids Ranch Horse
Kids Trail Horse
Good home wanted for Husband Horse
 

2rocky

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i rode this Big ol Mare (1/2 draft) a number of years in Wyoming
but most of the horses were a great deal smaller than her. I estimated her at 17 hands and 1600 lbs.
For reference I'm 6'1" and 225 in this pic.
hunt2005020_edited.JPG
Copy of sept07 037.jpg
 

Pony Soldier

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I had a gelding that was 15-3 (morgan). I lead mine downhill to save their legs and ride up and on the flats. At the end of the day of 8-10 hrs and on and off the horse, I found it harder and harder to get back on him especially as I got older. Sometimes training them to hold still over a log so you can get on or finding "a fat man stump' is a challenge at dark. Be careful with the really tall ones.
 
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IDspud

IDspud

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Thanks for all the advice. I’m going to check out what’s even available and see if some thing a little bit better suited clicks with me.

I like that Appaloosas apparently originated at the Nez Perce tribe near me.

Only real reason I wanted a Percheron was because of how beautiful they are. They just really jumped out at me as different than the rest.
 

PredatorSlayer

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Is a Percheron going to do ok for mountain hunting and general trail riding? Looking at getting a horse very soon and love these guys, but if a quarter horse is going to be 100x times better than I will avoid them. I want to be able to pack in 2-3 days (minimal gear) for hunting and back country camping in the mountains. I understand if I want to pack out game I will need a second horse/mule or be making many trips.

Also curious how they do in snow. How much snow is too much to safely go out in?
Drafts and draft crosses are awesome in the mountains. A percheron will be a great horse. My guy is a 2.5 yr old shire thoroughbred cross - he is a beast. He has been packing and hauling kids in the mountains all spring and summer. Nothing wrong with slow and steady. Every draft or draft cross I have ever owned will walk out just fine tho and if I had to bet my life on any breed I would take any of the drafts over a QH or anything else. They were bred to be gentle giants and bomb proof. A lot of them were used for battle and then pulling farm equipment. The stupid was bred out of them for the most part.

Most outfitters are using draft crosses and mules for a reason.
 

missjordan

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Thanks for all the advice. I’m going to check out what’s even available and see if some thing a little bit better suited clicks with me.

I like that Appaloosas apparently originated at the Nez Perce tribe near me.

Only real reason I wanted a Percheron was because of how beautiful they are. They just really jumped out at me as different than the rest.

One thing to is you have a very healthy budget also to work with. You should be able to find a good quality mountain horse for the 10k you want to spend. I wouldn’t even settle for something that doesn’t have “buttons” either. A bulldog built quarter horse will fit the bill just fine.

What i would do is decide who you are going to learn to ride with and let them find you a horse. Then continue to take lessons from them after the fact. Also make sure you have the horse vet checked before you purchase.

Things i would look for in a purchase
Ask for the horse to be caught upon arrival so you can make sure your not going to spend hours trying to catch a horse in the pasture that’s either afraid or an A-hole. That flat out sucks.
Do they have a quiet eye and a good temperament. Just like people you should pick a vibe up right away
Good conformation, hooves, and straight legs. Some defects you can work with but i wouldn’t with your budget. Older horses like people may need light maintenance because they can be stiff or sore at times. That’s something you’ll have to decide for yourself if you want that. There’s nothing wrong with light maintenance but major issues are not worth it. Definitely don’t buy with a color in mind. Buy for temperament
Does the horse give to pressure on and off the ground. Does he drop his face into the bridle when you ask for it under saddle
W/T/C both directions then i would also check if the horse can back, pivot, forehand turn and side pass. Not that your looking for show horse moves but your looking for how resistant they are when you ask them to do something. Then finally hopefully the sellers will let you go on a trail ride outside the arena so you can get a feel for that also


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PredatorSlayer

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Here is a great example - on my bear hunt we had 11 horses. 8 riders on 6 horses and 5 packhorses, 7 of them are QHs 1 TN Walker and 3 were draft crosses - 1 perch QH cross and 2 shire thoroughbred crosses 2 and 3 years old at the time. By far the shires were the least experienced and youngest horses, yet we had my son on one and my buddies two kids on the other. The perch had 2 more kids doubled up on him. We get to the first water crossing. One of the pack horses blows up, flips over backwards shit goes everywhere, quarter horses are jumping sideways, spinning, a couple riders get dumped, two horses head back down the trailer toward the truck freaking out, I look over at the two shires and they are standing there quiet and calm looking at the chaos with what looked like a smile on their face. That is just who they are.
 
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mntnguide

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Last horse id ever buy for a mountain specific horse is a full draft. Been around dozens of them through the years when guiding. Yea they are naturally calm, but that does not mean they are the best horses. I guess if you have no clue what you're doing with horses, then sure. But long days on the back of a big ol barrel bodied draft, your knees will let you know every day. They are not smooth to ride, they are gentle giants, not mountain travelers. That is why outfitters use draft crosses, to get more QH for ability and the draft for size and mind. But the only full drafts we ran were strictly to keep the mules and herds together, we never were mean enough to stick clients on them so they couldn't walk for days after. . If you are choosing a horse cause they "look" cool, you are on the very wrong path to mountain hunting. There is nothing fun about mounting and dismounting a 17 hand+ horse all day long.

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IDspud

IDspud

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He has a Freesian Percheron cross for 12.5 and a leopard Appaloosa along with some others I’m checking out Wednesday
 

Werty

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He has a Freesian Percheron cross for 12.5 and a leopard Appaloosa along with some others I’m checking out Wednesday
Get a vet check for any horse you buy . You have no idea what makes a good horse from a bad horse.
It also appears your in some kind of hurry to hurt yourself, given your lack of experience. Just slow down!
 

Ucsdryder

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Get a vet check for any horse you buy . You have no idea what makes a good horse from a bad horse.
It also appears your in some kind of hurry to hurt yourself, given your lack of experience. Just slow down!
Yep. SLOOOOWWWWW down.
 

CrazySRanch

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I will beat down what someothers Saud the taller horses are not fun tonload packs yourself. And agility and stamina wise I'd go no more than half draft. Like stated I would stay between 15 and 16 hands kinda stout. I have mules there a whole different beast my best pack mule is a 14.1 hand haflinger mule stout stubborn and a heck of able strong no quit just a brute, then i have another well built quarter horse mule at 14.2 good bone not quite as stout as the one obove but a good packer and rider, my third I have never packed I love riding he is out of a quarter horse mare bred for cattle work and he has no quite goes all day 15.1 if you end up getting on and off you don't want a big animal. Also the way it was put to me us take a 300lb man and a 180lb man who's joints and body wears out faster. The bigger guy typically same with animals. If you packed all the time it would be a different story.
 

Hardtak

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He has a Freesian Percheron cross for 12.5 and a leopard Appaloosa along with some others I’m checking out Wednesday
I would stay away from Freesian's. They are the flavour of the month to breed anythithing with them because they are pretty. Pretty *&*% dumb but pretty. IMO.

Applaloosa's tend to run a little hot but are known to have great endurance. I would be cautious with the leopard coloring as it again has been bred to be pretty.

If you want pretty go buy a poster.
 

Hardtak

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You didn't ask but my wife and I recently replaced her mountain/trail horse and this was our criteria:

Under 12
Quarter horse or appendix
over 15hh
Coloring not grey (love the look but they are 80% higher chance to cancer)
No white socks or feet (white hooves tend to be softer and white socks are more prone to scratches)
Experience in mountains, lacking that a breadth of experience doing ranch work and other trail work, exposure to livestock, wildlife
Stands when tied, trailers well and good for farrier
Good feet and conformation
Not been used on barrels, cutting or reining (too hard on the body)
Kind eye and head
Smooth walk, trot, canter and can or will have the ability to adjust speeds in those gaits
Ability to think and give to pressure instead of running/pulling/bolting
 

FatCampzWife

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Well if your minds already made up , why ask for advice ? Horses are fickle animals and take years to learn how just to care for them , much less ride them . I've seen too many people do just what you're doing , you love the idea of owning a horse , but don't know the hassle of actually owning a horse .
Boarding is a good way to go , but you're letting someone else care for it , the feed is crucial , horses do not handle diet changes very well , too hot hay , too much grain , can make a horse colic and die .
Plus , trying to target just one breed is limiting your options . Percherons are great horses , I had a friend that used one for Team Penning , slow , but docile and mild manners . But big and wide would be a determent , IMO .
Plus , horses are herd animals , one alone might develop bad habits , like cribbing .
Also , if you keep horses at home , give up vacations .
The daily routing of owning horses is a lot , you need to decide if you want horses in general , learn the ropes , horses like to be fed on schedule , mostly , then try to find a horses to ride in the mountains .
You can do it , but it will take years to learn , IMO , just trying to hep.
This. Spent Many years riding, showing, training, ; trail riding/exploring/using horses, mules, & drafts (like your Percheron). If you HAVE to have an equine, & want to use it on skinny mountain trails, get a mustang or (better yet) mustang/percheron (draft) mule. The draft should mellow it out, & (for the most part) the mustang & mule part won't send you tumbling down a cliff or take the "shortest route." Mules have an uncanny sense of self preservation, but there's also no beating them into submssion. You have to make them think it's THEIR idea. They are social animals, so buying a well-trained trail goat/llama/alpaca would be ideal if you're going to be crazy enough to go solo as a new rider (less than 10 years experiece) in the boonies.
Horses are fantastic creatures, but they introduce an element of danger I really don't think you're comprehending amidst all the glitter & gold of owning an animal. I've personally known, and had acquaintances of several, who have been killed or maimed for life horseback.
Find a GOOD pack/trail mule breeder, a GOOD trail alpaca or llama breeder, & talk to them at length about your experience & plans for the animals. Don't buy from anyone that doesn't give you a reasonable money back gaurantee (can't bring it back hurt, duh). Get a pre-purchase vet check, from a vet YOU select, not theirs. Do NOT get anything younger than a 5 or 6 year old.
When you DO get one, understand it's not a weekend warrior thing. This is a LIFESTYLE commitment, and you'll need spousal/partner support (if you have one). Then, Enjoy. They are very special creatures & will change you & potentially fix you in ways you can't imagine. They'll also crush you &break you if you're not paying attention.
Not sure where you're at, but I'd be happy to help you find a good breeder. PM me if you want.
 
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IDspud

IDspud

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Well I own a horse now. Appaloosa draft horse cross. 12 years old. Super mellow dude. Accidentally poked him in the eye trying to pet him and he didn’t seem to mind. Doing my first lesson Friday.
 

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Hardtak

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Well I own a horse now. Appaloosa draft horse cross. 12 years old. Super mellow dude. Accidentally poked him in the eye trying to pet him and he didn’t seem to mind. Doing my first lesson Friday.
Maybe just the picture but the angles (way to high) on the hind hoofs look way off, as a result he seems to be standing camped out.
 
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IDspud

IDspud

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Maybe just the picture but the angles (way to high) on the hind hoofs look way off, as a result he seems to be standing camped out.
I get a full refund if he has any issues that come up during the vet check.
 

Hardtak

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I get a full refund if he has any issues that come up during the vet check.
I would get a xray on the PPE if the picture is an accurate representation of those feet angles. Those heels are so high that he is walking on stumps. I would bet he looks like he walks stiff and trips. It doesn't get fixed with just one corrective trim. Possibly with 6 months+ of trims and/or corrective shoes. There could be already damage done to the tendons and ligaments/joints and they have to be slowly corrected or it could result in more extensive damage.

Like I said earlier it is tough to tell from the pics but I would check those out as they look very concerning.
 
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