Enthusiasm and respect for the old vaquero ways of horsetraining were what drew members of the VHF together originally (seeVaquero Way). These training techniques came from the Old World along with the great Spanish warhorses brought to these shores by the Conquistadors. The needs of the warrior and the needs of the vaquero were the same -- a horse that was nimble, strong, courageous and responsive, and which could be guided by legs alone, leaving the rider's hands free. Today these Old World horsetraining techniques are still practiced by the charros and caballeros of the northeast San Fernando Valley, a tradition passed down through the generations.
The Vaquero Heritage Foundation Spirit Riders bring 1830's Los Angeles alive, wearing costumes authentic to the time and place. They ride beautiful, spirited horses trained in the vaquero tradition, outfitted with the flashy silver bits and spurs that were the vaquero's pride.
" Traemos Los Angeles a los años 1830 a la vida. "
Desfiles, Educación, Acontecimientos Especiales
Preguntas - por favor póngase en contacto con Vaquera
El entusiasmo y el respeto para los métodos de vaquero de educación de caballo consistían en que reunió a los miembros del VHSR al principio (mirar Vaquero Way). Estas técnicas de educación vinieron del Viejo Mundo con los gran caballos de guerra español traído a estas orillas por los Conquistadores. Las necesidades del guerrero y las necesidades del vaquero eran las mismas - un caballo que era ágil, fuerte, valeroso y sensible, y que podría ser dirigido por piernas solas, las manos del jinete libres. Hoy este caballo que entrena técnicas todavía es practicado por los charros y los caballeros de San Fernando Valley, una tradición transmitida por las generaciones.
Los Jinetes de Espíritu traen Los Angeles a los años 1830 a la vida, llevando trajes auténticos al tiempo y el lugar. Ellos montan caballos hermosos, animados entrenados en la tradición de vaquero, equipada con los añicos llamativos de plata y las espuelas que eran el orgullo del vaquero.
Deb Baumann y Bambam (aka Heyoka), quarterhorse de 5 años.
Deb entrenó Bambam en la tradición de vaquero. A la edad de 3 años, él fue comenzado en un jicama, luego una combinación bit-and-bosal con dobles rienda, y sólo recientemente graduado a la plata de fantasía el freno de California con la rienda sola. Su boca es muy ligero. Él es capaz de haber dirigido (la parada, vaya, gire, el pase de lado, el revés) por piernas y voz solo (pero él es todavía un adolescente, de modo que algo dependa de su humor ese día). Su educación no es aún completa, pero él está sobre el programa. Su objetivo hacia 2003 es de dominar una vuelta lisa.
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Deb Baumann and Bambam (aka Heyoka), a 5-year-old quarterhorse. Deb trained Bambam in the vaquero tradition. At age 3, he was started in a hackamore, then a bit-and-bosal combination with double reins, and only recently graduated to the fancy silver California bit with single rein. His mouth is feather-light. He is capable of being directed (stop, go, turn, side pass, reverse) by legs and voice alone (but he is still a teenager, so that somewhat depends on his mood that day). His training is not yet complete, but he's on schedule. His goal for 2003 is to master a smooth spin.
Right:(click any image to enlarge)
Surgeon General's Warning: Horses are addictive, expensive and may impair the ability to use common sense.
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Special Warning: Attempting to re-create historical authenticity is even more addictive and expensive. The secret (for those of us who are not rich) is to take it slow and to be creative. We note the features that make the 1830's Californio look unique, then keep a sharp eye out at thrift stores, garage or estate sales. Sometimes one finds bargains that can be easily adapted. And sometimes (very rarely) one finds true treasures at virtually no cost (like finding an authentic Garcia bit at a yard sale for a few dollars -- it has happened..!) Also, current parade group members usually have more than one costume and extra accessories to share for parade use. New parade riders who are genuine in their enthusiasm for the vaquero way will receive help and encouragement in putting together their costumes.
But if you really get into this, you're going to start spending serious money eventually (that's where the addictive part comes in, and the impairment of common sense). A silver-mounted California bit is a necessity, and of course you'll want matching spurs. The more you study and learn (and hang out with people who have better equipment), the more passionate you will feel about "getting it right." Pretty soon you see nothing outlandish about buying your own genuine rawhide reata (even though you will never rope a cow), or a custom-made period hat (because nothing bought off the shelf is "just right"), and suddenly the thrift-store jacket you bought last year just won't do anymore (but you'll be happy to loan or sell it to another new parade rider), and your new jacket must match your calzoneras which must be tailor-made....
And congratulations, you are hooked. Welcome to the club.
THINK OF IT AS PUBLIC SERVICE... By putting together this "period look" including authentic tack that can only be made the old-fashioned way (each piece individually created by hand), each parade group member is making an important contribution towards keeping these old-world skills alive. The number of artist/artisans who know how to fashion vaquero equipment from rawhide and horsehair grows smaller every year. Likewise, as senior silversmiths retire from bit and spur making, a tradition dies with them -- unless young artists/artisans are motivated to learn these trades. To be so motivated, they have to be able to earn a living and feed their children.
The Vaquero Heritage Foundation offers free promotion and advertising for vaquero artist/artisans, and encourages anyone interested in vaquero history to patronize them -- both for the inherent beauty and timeless durability of their products as well as to keep this artform alive. At bottom of this page you'll find advertisements and links to period clothesmakers and vaquero equipment makers.
If you are interested in riding with the Vaquero Heritage Spirit Riders, or if you know of a vaquero leatherworker or silversmith that we should know about, please contact Vaquera.
Shopping Ideas for Authentic Vaquero Clothing & Tack
End of Trail - Once upon a time there was a wonderful event called End of Trial held every April in Riverside, sponsored by the Single Action Shooting Society (SASS). Unfortunately, SASS moved the event to Arizona. We miss it.
The Vaquero Show - In October, the Santa Inez Valley Historical Society sponsors a Vaquero Show whose vendors are even more specialized. So far as authentic Old California vaquero collectibles go, this show may be the best in the west.
More photos will be loaded soon.
BELOW: Just for fun, Erica decided to make this 1940's Hollywood-style headstall herself. The hardest part was getting the chains to hang straight down the face -- and to prevent them from flopping around. (click to enlarge)