I had the pleasure and honor of interviewing Ginger Katherns last Wednesday for a story to be published in my column Holistic Hall of Fame, in the October issue of Natural Horse Magazine. She and everyone at the Cloud Foundation are dedicated to preserving not only the wild horses at the Pryor Mountains, but wild horses all across the country. The Cloud Foundation is named in honor of the Pryor Mountain pale palomino stallion, Cloud. Ginger first saw and filmed Cloud on May 29, 1995. He was three days old.
Ginger had been to the Pryor Mountains to film and document the wild horses there many times over the previous fourteen months for the television show, "Marty Stauffer's Wild America." She watched and learned as the mares guided the foals with gentle discipline. She began to understand their behavior. She began to recognize their snorts, nickers, whinnies and postures. She learned the band was a family. She learned there was a pecking order within a band, and even between the bands. They leaned on, and needed each other for survival. It was those hardy, noble and majestic horses who taught her what it meant to be a wild horse.
|Bolder's band at Pryor Mountain|
Those wild, beautiful, full of spirit horses also taught her what true, horrible pain felt like when she witnessed her first Bureau of Land Management (BLM) brutal round-up. Tears streaming onto her camera lens, she listened to, and filmed the frantic screams of stallions, mares and foals, as bands and families were torn apart. She filmed the crashing and trampling of horses desperately trying to escape. On that day Ginger made a commitment to do whatever she could to keep those wild horses together and free.
She began documenting Cloud's life and band on film. The Pryor Mountains and the wonderful horses there have been seen by millions through her camera lens. Cloud has been rounded up three times over his 18 years. Fortunately he has always been released. Sadly his grandchildren and his daughter have recently been removed. Today there are only 125 Pryor Mountain mustangs running free, and those families are splintered and bands broken.
Ginger founded the Cloud Foundation, a non-profit which is dedicated to preventing the extinction of Cloud's herd through education and media events. The Cloud Foundation is also committed to protecting other wild herds on public lands. Cloud, his and other bands taught Ginger what it means to be a wild horse. She is dedicated to keeping them that way.
|Cloud on his 17th birthday May 29,2012|
To learn all about how the Cloud Foundation is working to help keep wild horses free to run wild please visit their website http://www.thecloudfoundation.org/
Join them on Facebook here- https://www.facebook.com/TheCloudFoundation
Gitty Up ~ Dutch Henry