Kentucky Mountain Saddle Horse News

Fall 2007
Farm of the Month

 

Glory Days Farm

Steve & Cheryl Jasinski

by Mary Marshall

Steve and Cheryl Jasinki of Glory Days Farm in West End, North Carolina, are down to earth matchmakers. They wonít be impressed by spurs that jingle or a cowboy complex. You canít persuade them to sell you a horse over the phone. However if you are willing to participate in a three-to-four day matchmaking process between horse and rider, odds are good that the perfect trail horse awaits at Glory Days.

"We specialize in beginning riders looking for their first horse," said Cheryl. "We have people from all ages, all walks of life, who come to us looking for a trail horse. Many are retired and have never ridden before, and some have riding experience. Regardless, we require that each prospective buyer go through the three-day process of finding the right horse. How much time do you want to take to find the right horse? That is the question a buyer needs to ask themselves, because our three-day process works. Your personality and riding skill has to match the personality and training level of the horse. A horse doesnít leave our farm unless it matches the rider."

The three-day matchmaking process includes education in basic horsemanship skills, on the ground and in the saddle, trail rides through North Carolinaís Uwharrie National Forest, and learning how to interact with horses.

"We have had people looking to buy a horse that have never ridden," Cheryl recalled. "Many people are older, retired, and ready to fulfill their dream of owning a horse. We want the horse and rider to be happy, confident, and safe. In 16 years of selling horses, we have only one horse that we know of that has been sold to someone else. The majority of our buyers have become friends, keep in touch, and love to let us know about their horses. It is a real feel good business. Weíre not in it to sell horses; we want to make a perfect match between horse and rider."

Each year, the Jasinkiís purchase a few select Kentucky Mountain Saddle Horses and Rocky Mountain Horses that enter the training program. Temperament, conformation, and suitability as a trail mount are major considerations in each horse. The youngsters complete six-to-eight weeks of gentling, groundwork, and round pen training, in hand and under saddle, before they are ever ridden out on the trail. Currently there are 14 trail horses and prospects grazing the abundant fields at Glory Days.

"The Kentucky Mountain Horse is perfect for the job because of their calm temperament, surefootedness, and work ethic--that is what they were bred for," Cheryl emphasized. "We buy youngsters from all over the United States. They become trustworthy trail partners for endurance or pleasure. You canít beat a mountain horse on the trail, for a beginner or an intermediate rider."

Cherylís success as a trainer and trail rider extends beyond the boundaries of Glory Days. She rode her Kentucky Mountain Saddle Horse partner Moonshadow to a fourth-place finish (out of 93 riders) in a NATRAC competitive trail ride when he was only three years old approximately eight years ago.

"Back then, not many people outside of the south knew much about the Kentucky Mountain Saddle Horse," said Cheryl. "Here we were at this competitive trail ride with Arabians, Tennessee Walkers and the like. We got all kinds of looks. When Moonshadow finished fourth you can guarantee everyone was asking about mountain horses. Now, everybody wants to ride one."

For more information on Glory Days Farm, visit their web site: www.glorydaysfarm.com .