Sarah Flynn <>


Wet Mountain Valley Saddle Club <>Sat, Jul 1, 2017 at 1:47 PM
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Non-Profit Equine Organization

Message from the President... 
It's that time again, when the Westcliffe Stampede makes or breaks our profit and (or) loss for the year. As always, it depends on the assistance of volunteers to make it successful. Not only does the rodeo sustain the saddle club until the following year, it fulfills the club's mission to continue the historic traditions of the ranching and equine community. Many Colorado rodeos have gone by the wayside, due to lack of volunteerism. 

We should all be proud that July 14-16, 2017 marks the 71st Annual Westcliffe Stampede Rodeo.

The member meeting on Monday, July 10th 6pm will focus on rodeo committees and tasks. 
There is a special Rodeo Work Day also scheduled on July 8th at 9am.

We need your help to get our grounds looking it's best for our Rodeo fans!

Please remember to fill out your volunteer sheets and turn them into Annie or George at the Volunteer-
After-Rodeo-Party at the Koons' camper, following Sunday's rodeo. 
We need those sheets to provide volunteer hours for future grant requests. We also use them to determine awards at the Volunteer & Sponsor Dinner.
(Details will follow on that at a later date.)

So we hope to see you at the Work Party July 8th 9am (Lunch will be provided), the Rodeo/Member Meeting on July 10th 6pm, and the after-rodeo celebration on Sunday. 

Bring lawn chairs and beverages other than beer. Beer is on the house! 
Food items to share are welcome, but not necessary. 

Thank you!

Monday, July 10th 6pm

Membership & Rodeo Meeting

This month's Pot Luck theme will be Rodeo!! 

For cooking ideas visit:
We will be having other themed potlucks for future meetings, so keep an eye out in the newsletter to see what the upcoming themes will be!

2017 Schedule of Events

Please keep in mind that more events will be added and some event schedules may vary. 
Keep an eye out for updates!

Wet Mountain Valley Saddle Club
90 CR 241, Westcliffe, CO

Friday, July 28th -  6:30pm - 8:30pm

*Cash Bingo / Cards $.25 ea

Including "Growing Jackpots"

*3 Progressive Jackpots! / Cards $.50 ea
*Cowboy Bingo Special Games / Wear your bandana and get an extra card!
Root Beer Floats & Sundaes: $2.00
Soda: $1.00
Candy Bars: $1.00
Coffee: FREE!
For more information, please call Annie Kerns 719-371-2503




It is our members and our volunteers who keep this organization moving forward!
Thank you to all who have donated your time & talents.
We hope to continue our success and increase memberships and volunteerism in 2017!

Thank you for your interest in upholding our promise to the community, our youth, and our members in the struggle to maintain common interests and goals!

2017 Westcliffe Stampede Queen
Miss Katlyn Freeburg

2017 Westcliffe Stampede Queen's Attendant
Miss Megan Frahm

2017 Westcliffe Miss Stampede
Miss Brooke Flynn

2017 Westcliffe Stampede Princess
Miss Skyler Rose Smith

Brittanee Bohannan
2016 Westcliffe Stampede Queen
2017 Royalty Director


2017 Royalty Sponsorships


If you would like to place a tax deductible donation, please contact:

Brittanee Bohannan
2016 Westcliffe Stampede Queen
2017 Royalty Director

Sponsored by the Wet Mountain Valley Saddle Club
Location: Music Meadows CTR (Type A Two Day, B1 Saturday only)
Address: 6076 CR 119, Westcliffe, CO 719-783-2222  
Date:    August 19-20, 2017   Rider Limit: 60

The Wet Mountain Valley is one of the most beautiful places on earth. The ride will be on the valley floor with the Sangre Cristo Mountains and its many 14ers as a back drop. Trails will travel through rolling hills, pastures and light forest. Water will be from the historic Grape Creek that runs through the Music Meadows Ranch.

Directions to Camp: From the North or West: Go south of Westcliffe on HWY 69, 4 miles to Colfax and turn right. Go 6 miles and turn left at the T and follow signs to Music Meadows Ranch. From the South you will turn left on Colfax. We will have lots of signs and ribbons for you to follow.
Camp: Is a private dude ranch, there will be a $10 per horse charge. Horse water will be provided. Please bring people water. Days can be warm and nights cool, so bring a blanket for your horse. Shoes are recommended. 
Emergency Phone: Custer Sheriff 719-783-2270 Limited cells work at camp. Numbers will be shared at briefing.

Schedule: Ride check in starts at 1 PM, Pre-ride vet check-in begins at 2 PM Friday, Aug. 19, until dark. Please let management know if you will need an early Saturday check in. Ride briefings for all riders will be held each evening. 
Meals: NATRC chef Chuck Smith will be cooking Friday dinner, Saturday and Sunday lunch. Saturday dinner will be catered by our host Elin of Sangre's Best Beef. Friday night happy hour is 1 hour before dinner. Please bring something to share and what you want to drink, for a fun meet and greet. Volunteers will be fed all meal all weekend. There is a $30 meal charge for non-rider, non-volunteer.

Awards:  1st thru 6th place will have awards as well as Sweepstakes and High point combo. Novice will have ribbons too.
Rules: Ride will be conducted under current NATRC rules. Distance Only (DO) offered for those who wish to compete in mileage only. Health Certificates and Coggins are required for out-of-state horses. Panels will be allowed, they must be attached to the trailer and no larger than 12x12

Judges: Vet - Carrie Porter DVM (region 5)                 Horsemanship: Sarah Rinne (region 6)

Entry and Fees: Price includes all NATRC fees and Friday and Saturday camping fees: $145 Adult Member, $156 Adult Non-Member, $90 junior member. $101 Junior Non-Member (Region 3 has junior discounts, please check website) 1 day B ride (Saturday only) $120 Adult Members, $131 Adult Non-Member, $ 75 Junior Members, $86 Junior Non-Members. If you want to come in early or stay late it is $10 per trailer per night. If you have any questions please call Lin at 719-371-6008.
Remember NATRC is offering free membership to all first time members in 2017!
Checks payable to:   Lin Ward, 200 County Rd. 326, Westcliffe, CO. 81252
Deposit: $50 due with entry and if not paid by June 1 you will lose your entry place and be put on a Wait List. The balance is due at Ride Check-in. Refunds until July 28, 2017, less $15 administration fee. No Show, No Refund! 

Management: Jim and Lin Ward, Secretary: Lin Ward, 
     719-783-9645 Cell 719-371-6008

Cyn Williams has stepped up to coordinate our Saddle Club Day Rides.

This year, the Saddle Club plans to organize day rides for members who want to hit the trails.  We also are considering adding horse camping opportunities to this riding season.  We would appreciate if you could fill out the survey so that we can better plan the day rides and horse camping.
Thank you....and rides will soon be scheduled.

 Thank you,
Email for more info

Hot Weather Can Hurt Feed
Follow these tips to keep your horse's feed from going bad in hot, humid weather:
Don't stockpile. Buy and store no more than a 10- to 14-day supply of grain mix or commercial feed.
Store properly. Keep feed in a cool, dry, well-ventilated place, away from direct sunlight.
Allow circulation. Place feed bags on pallets rather than on the floor; ideally, set them up on end and slightly apart to enable air flow. Don't place feed in airtight plastic bins.
Be choosy. Pelleted feeds tend to keep longer than sweet feeds. Check ingredients for mold inhibitors.
Source: Kentucky Equine Research

Latest News from the
Colorado Horse Council

Three Common Mistakes that Erode Your Horse's Trust

In Florida, Julie encourages this experienced horse to take jumps confidently-even in new places. 

Photo by: The Whole Picture, LLC.

Horses know good leadership when they see it because their lives depend upon it. We probably all agree that the ultimate relationship with a horse is one in which the horse looks up to you, wants to be with you and feels safe and peaceful in your presence. But all the groundwork and relationship building exercises in the world won't help you develop this relationship unless you present yourself as a competent leader at all times.
In every clinic that I teach, people ask how they can get their horse to trust them more, yet I see them constantly doing things that show their horses that they lack judgment and make poor decisions. It's funny that horses see this so clearly, but humans-not so much.
Your job as the leader is to watch out for the safety of your followers. Every time you give a horse a reason to question your judgment-because you've put him in a situation he perceives as unsafe-you're chipping away at his faith in you.
Here are three common mistakes I see people making every day with their horses that give the horse good reasons not to trust their judgment and leadership. Watch for these mistakes closely the next time you interact with your horse; make sure that you are the leader your horse deserves.
Putting the Horse on a Collision Course
An obedient riding horse goes in the direction you dictate, at the speed you set, without argument. The problem is that horses are much more spatially aware than humans. Horses worry about the other horses in the arena and they expect the leader to watch ahead and prevent any potential horse-to-horse collision or conflict.
Most people are so consumed with themselves, that they are oblivious to their surroundings, including what the other horses are doing. Your horse always recognizes your lack of awareness, because his safety depends upon it. He sees the hazard even when you don't.
I often see this when people are longeing or circling in an arena where there are other horses. First of all, let's be clear on this, longeing a horse in an arena where horses are being ridden is dangerous and should never happen-that's a pretty basic safety rule. At clinics, when everyone is doing circling work (and no horses are being ridden), people will still put their horses on a collision course with another horse. The horse always sees it; the person seldom does. If you do this, your horse starts doubting your judgment.
I also see this in the arena when all riders have their own agendas. The smart riders (and the good leaders) are looking well ahead. But invariably, there will be riders totally focused down on the horse's withers, concentrating only on themselves, not even aware of their own horse let alone the other horses in the arena. Being aware of danger in the environment is such a basic job of the leader that it is hard for your horse to think of you that way when you are failing at such a basic task.
Putting the Horse Between a Rock and a Hard Place
Your horse may view any given situation much differently than you and he sees danger where you may not. We, as humans, tend to analyze, rationalize and justify the situation, while to your horse it's simple-it's either safe or not. I often see riders and handlers put their horses in very precarious situations, with seemingly no awareness that it was risky for the horse. Perhaps the rider had no awareness of how the horse views the situation. Or perhaps the rider made an executive decision to override instinct and go into an unsafe situation anyway because her logic tells her it's safe (logic that the horse may not possess).
This happens at my clinics while we are working on teaching the horse to step back with a subtle hand signal. I always catch people backing their horse into a solid fence or worse, another horse. He knows it to be wrong and unsafe. People get so caught up in the exercise of teaching the hand signal, that they lose all awareness of the surroundings and abdicate all responsibility for leadership.
Similar examples from the ground include asking a horse to step into a trailer, then standing right in front of him so he would have to bowl you over in order to comply. He's pretty sure he's not supposed to do that. Or asking the horse to trot on the lead line, but remaining right in front of him so there's nowhere for him to go without running into you. It feels like a trap.
When riding in a group, it's your job to keep your horse safe. Still, I see riders pass between a horse and the fence. Entrapment! There's a reason fundamental safety rules exist-and it's a fundamental rule to never pass between a horse and the rail. Horses can be very opportunistic when it comes to aggressive behavior and many horses will kick, given this opportunity. Your horse knows that as well and he has good reason to question your judgment when he is the one that will likely take the blow.
Asking the Horse to do Something, Then Punishing him When he Does
Horses, by nature, are very willing animals that instinctively seek out approval and acceptance from the herd leader. When you are a fair and consistent leader, your horse will work hard to please you and will feel safe and content in your presence.  When you notice his efforts and praise him for giving of himself, then your relationship kicks to a whole new level. There's no limit to how hard a horse will try to please you when the right kind of give-and-take relationship exists.
We humans tend to fall down on our leadership in some very gut-wrenching ways to the horse. Often I see riders give a cue to the horse, then inadvertently punish him for responding to the cue. The most common example of this occurs in the canter departure. The rider may lack confidence. The horse is cued to canter, then hit in the mouth with the bit when he does (because his head moves into the bit in that moment). It hurts his mouth and scares him, leaving him with the feeling that he is being punished for doing what was asked.
Sometimes I see riders miscue their horse then admonish him for responding to the cue given. Then the rider wonders why he suddenly stopped responding to that cue. A perfect example is seen frequently when the rider, with two hands on the reins, asks the horse to turn with the inside rein, then starts pulling on the outside rein too, effectively pulling the nose in two directions at the same time. Pulling on two reins to turn puts incredible undue pressure on the horse's mouth. It appears to him that you asked him to turn, then penalized him with the outside rein when he did. In that moment, the mistake was the rider's (it's the leader's job to be clear in her directives). The horse did exactly what he was told to do then was admonished for trying.
Being a good handler and good rider takes a lot of time and effort and a lot more awareness of the horse. The more we can think from our horse's point of view, the deeper our level of understanding of his behavior and the more rewarding the relationship with the horse. They are complicated animals, perceiving much more about us than we do about ourselves. That's what makes horses so therapeutic to our souls.
Seek out help and have others watch you-they'll catch on faster than you about what cues you may be giving the horse. They'll see what you can't. Let your horse guide you. He won't lie to you; he either thinks of you as the leader or not. If he's resistant and argumentative, he probably has a good reason. If he trusts you and looks up to you, you're a good leader.

Enjoy the ride!
Julie Goodnight

Making Time For Horses


Volunteer Time Sheets


To help you keep track of the time that you volunteer with the Wet Mountain Valley Saddle Club, we have created a time sheet.


Please note that a Board of Directors member will need to approve your time with a signature. Below you will find a sample of the time sheet. 


Click Here 




Dear Saddle Club Members,


This year the Saddle Club would like to reach out to our members for your feedback.  The Saddle Club Board of Directors will address specific concerns that you may have as a member.


Below you will find a survey for you to complete and return either via email to, or if you wish to remain anonymous, please return at the next membership meeting.


As we move forward together as a club, an important goal for success is increased involvement from our membership.  Current studies show an average of 40 members out of over 100 attending monthly meetings.  The average number of volunteers is 10%.


We value our members and realize that your talents and ideas are vital to the growth of the Saddle Club.


Click Here 


Thank you for taking the time to respond.  Your input is very much appreciated!

Cowboy Dressage of Colorado

No experience required. Come learn!

Special Pricing for Saddle Club Members!


6076 CR 119, Westcliffe, CO  81252


Taste The Difference!

Elin Parker Ganschow
PO Box 1061
WestcliffeCO  81252
 (719) 783-2222



719-783-0563 - 307B Main Street

Full-time, Hardworking, Professional
Real Estate Brokers since 2003

Buying or selling...we would be honored
to assist you with your real estate needs!
Search the entire Westcliffe MLS from

3115 County Road 160
Westcliffe, CO 81252
"Experience the Difference a View Makes"
P | 719.783.9100

Wet Mountain Valley Saddle Club, PO Box 501, Westcliffe, CO 81252, CO 81252
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