Here is a dapple gray Paso Fino horse running through his green late summer pasture filled with little white wildflowers. In scenic Pennsylvania, it was a beautiful September day with the leaves on the mountain trees nearly ready to turn. The cornfield has ripened into a dull yellow under blue skies as they always do. Soon the harvesters will come as they always do too.
For a few light, breezy days before taking this picture, there had been some wind going over the land. That wind had twirled and spun this horse’s mane nearly into long, ruffled dreadlocks with a twisted topknot.
Prompted by an out-of-frame helper to move him along, this Paso Fino horse kept coming close at an easy trot at every pass. I took a single step into his way, causing him to change course to go past…and the shutter was tripped to make this image.
Without a helper to take horse pictures, horses will often go to a far pasture corner to be left in peace to graze the grass. You’ll be waiting a long time for any kind of a dynamic horse photograph, so you have to get them moving! Horses usually won’t work unless they have to, just like many people.
Why the title Freestyle? Other than the fence in the background, this image looks like he can roam almost at will, at liberty in a beautiful landscape. But behind the scenes, he was always directed back toward the camera.
A dapple gray horse is light gray or nearly white with a mottled pattern of a darker gray, often in small circles. The pattern can be faint, prominent, or irregular. Other horse colors can show dappling too. Many are very beautiful, according to personal taste, and I always enjoy seeing them.
This horse belongs to friends who kindly let me ride him on a long trail ride through those mountains in the background. A Paso Fino horse is a gaited breed, which means a defined inbred leg movement that gives a smoother ride.
It’s very true, this breed is one of the smoothest riding horses of all. It’s like sitting in a chair with no up-and-down rhythm in the saddle, making a far more relaxing and enjoyable ride. If you enjoy horseback riding, be sure to try a gaited horse like this dapple gray Paso Fino.
Location: near Hyndman, Pennsylvania, Bedford County, PA.
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