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The G enet ics A re H ere F or Po (First tenti Down al G Dash si 10 reatn 5-Eas ess! y Hen r yetta si 90

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A Fu ll Bro ther To Le ad

Full brother to ing S 4-Time G1 Winner, ire H OLLA Champion FOUR FORTY BLAST ND E si 112 ($321,356), G1 Winner ASE! HOLLAND EASE si 109 ($361,227), 2-Time G1 Placed LAS ALAMITOS si 97 ($202,480, dam of Texas Hi-Point Three-Year-Old Colt, G1 Winner RAGAZZO si 102, $559,500, 2-Time G2/G3 Property of Winner GIORGINO si 99, 2011, $267,704), G1/G3 Placed John R. Hawks Brisco County Jr si 95 ($118,225), G1 Placed Dividends Declared si 94 ($93,160, dam of 2011 G1 Winner 2012 Fee: $750 HIGH RATE OF RETURN si 99, $452,635), etc. With Considerations Cooled Semen By The #1 All-Time Leading Sire of Money Earners, Available World Champion FIRST DOWN DASH si 105 ($857,256). Eligibilities: Speedhorse Races, Colorado Bred Out of An All-Time Leading Dam of ROM Program EASY HENRYETTA si 90 ($18,402).

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The Fence Post breeder’s connection 2 0 1 2

Table of Contents

Yarbrough Acres......................6 Blue Valentine.......................14 Grunden Ranch Morgans......20

Office at 501 8th Avenue, Greeley, Colorado. Mailing address: P.O. Box 1690, Greeley, Colorado, 80632. Telephone: (970) 686-5691. FAX: (970) 352-7164. Advertising Deadline: 5 p.m. Wednesday. Published every Monday. The Fence Post (USPS No. 547650; ISSN# 0274-7308) is published weekly for $55 per year by Greeley Publishing Co., at the offices of the Fence Post, P.O. Box 1690, Greeley, Colorado, 80632. Postmaster: Send address changes to the Fence Post, P.O. Box 1690, Greeley, Colorado, 80632. Periodicals postage paid at Greeley, CO., and additional mailing offices. Subscriptions outside the continental U.S. $81/year. ŠCopyright Greeley Publishing Co., 1990. All rights reserved. Reproduction without permission of the publisher is prohibited. We advise anyone who submits material to the Fence Post that doing so constitutes a consent for the Fence Post to publish the material as it chooses, including but not limited to all print, electronic, and archival versions, without any further compensation to the author. The views and opinions of the editorial does not reflect the views and opinions of the Fence Post staff.

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30TH ANNIVARSARY

FOUR STATES AG EXPO

MARCH 15-18, 2012 MONTEZUMA COUNTY FAIRGROUNDS CORTEZ, CO

In agriculture, growing

is what we do best.

4th Annual

All Breeds Bull & Heifer Sale in partnership with Southern Colorado Livestock Auction.

Saturday, March 18

1:00 p.m.

We’re planning a grand 2012 show to honor our history and open the gate to our future. Check back here often to seee how we’re growing our 30th anniversary event!

Pen included for sale animals only. Pens for display livestock available for a fee.

For consignment contracts and more information:

Entry deadline: February 1 Catalogue deadline: January 1

(970) 529-3486

www.fourstatesagexpo.com info@fourstatesagexpo.com

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The F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s c onnection 2012

Yarbrough Acres in Fort Lupton, Colo., Warmblood breeding and much more by Tony Bruguiere Ft. Collins, Colo.

C

olorado has a diversity of horse breeding programs. In addition to some outstanding western horse lines, there are excellent breeding operations that feature Sport horses. Sport horses compete in traditional Olympic equestrian sporting events and are bred for specific qualities in their conformation, movement and temperament. Although any horse breed can compete in these events, one of the most popular is the Warmblood, which is not a breed in the truest sense, but rather a type of horse. At its most basic definition, a Warmblood is a cross between a hot-blooded Thoroughbred

and a cold-blooded draft horse. There are a lot of different Warmbloods, but perhaps the most popular for competition is the Dutch Warmblood. The competitive Dutch Warmblood is a large, somewhat spirited, but mostly even tempered, and highly trainable horse. Most Dutch Warmbloods are black, brown, bay, chestnut or gray. There are also a number of tobiano pinto horses from the influence of the stallion Samber. The terms “paint” and “pinto” are used to describe spotted horses, but there is a clear difference between the two terms. A pinto may be of any breed or combination of breeds. For a horse

A trainer works with one of the Yarbrough Acres horses to use up some athletic energy prior to a riding lesson for a youngster. Ranch manager, Shelley Yarbrough, gives riding lessons in western and english.


The Fence Post breeder’s connection 2 0 1 2

to be registered as an American Paint Horse, it must have registered American Quarter Horse, American Paint Horse or Thoroughbred parents. Jeri Yarbrough, owner of Yarbrough Acres in Fort Lupton, Colo., specializes in breeding champion, pinto Dutch Warmbloods. Jeri competed for many years on her Paint horse Son of a Delight (Bear), who was a USDF Paint Horse of the Year. “My paint, Bear, was a Quarter Horse and 16.2, tall, and leggy.” said Yarbrough, “I bought him from Virgil Lawson down in Wetmore. Virgil called him ‘that tall, white, leggy, thing’ and he didn’t like him, but I thought he’s going to be perfect for me for dressage. That ‘tall, white, leggy, thing’ did all right, because he’s still the top ranking paint horse in the nation.” Jeri Yarbrough started the Yarbrough Acres breeding operation by importing her black and white pinto stud, Presley. Presley is a beautifully colored dutch stallion with an exceptional temperament and powerful movement. Presley’s pedigree contains some of the best Dutch bloodlines, Olympic Ferro, one of the most well known and most successful dressage stallions in the world, and Ulft, known around the world as a top sire of both dressage and jumping horses. Also Presley’s sire Samber received a rare 10 for temperament and trainability in Holland. Presley was a good choice by Yarbrough for a stallion as he passes his athleticism and temperament to his offspring. “His offspring like people a lot, and they are very willing and easy to work with. They are not real ‘hot’ and are suitable for anyone from an

Jeri Yarbrough, owner of Yarbrough Acres in Fort Lupton, Colo., with two of her foals from this years breeding. Besides breeding her own horses, Jeri does AI for clients and foals, imprints and starts foals at her breeding facility.

amateur to a professional rider,” said Yarbrough. Yarbrough selected her 13 broodmares with equal care. “Our top quality sport horses combine the best of European and American bloodlines. I hand selected each Warmblood and Thoroughbred broodmare at our farm for their exceptional pedigree and correct conformation,” said Yarbrough. When it comes to Sport horses, the buyer has to do a lot of due diligence and have complete faith in the breeder, as Warmbloods are not for the financially faint of heart. Semen Ranch manager, Shelley Yarbrough, gives riding prices run from $1,000 lessons in western and english. She also works to $5,000 per unit. Foals are from $7,000 to with 4-H kids on their Equitation projects. $15,000 and prices rise depending on bloodline, training and competitive results. Breeding stallions like Yarbrough Acres Presley are well into the six figure range. continued on page 8

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Yarbrough Acres ... continued from page 7

Jeri Yarbrough has put a lot of effort into making sure that her horses and those that she boards for others are well cared for. No detail is too small. The large performance arena has a special sand mix to insure the soundness of the horses. Pens are spacious to give horses plenty of opportunity to run. All animals get at least half a day in two to five acre pastures with other horses just being a horse. “The nicest thing that anyone has ever said about my place is “your horses are happy” and it’s because “they get to be with their friends!” She said “Horses are social animals. So I let them be with their friends and they get to go out and just be a horse — and I think that it makes them a better performance horse.” Besides the Warmblood breeding program, Yarbrough Acres is a premier breeding, sales, boarding and training facility. Jeri’s sister Shelley Yarbrough is the ranch manager and also does the

training in western and english riding. In addition, Shelley does a lot of work with 4-H kids in the Equitation projects. Yarbrough Acres also does AI breeding for clients. They foal out the babies, imprint them and do the halter training and starting of the foals. Jeri Yarbrough puts a high value on her experience and integrity, “I want to make sure that the horse is going to match the rider, so that the horse and the person have the best chance of being successful. I competed hard for 20 years, so I know a lot of people in the business and a lot of top professionals have my horses.” Yarbrough continued, “These guys can buy babies for their future competition prospects anywhere, but they have come to Colorado and buy horses from me. That’s really exciting for me.” For more information about Yarbrough Acres, please call (303) 8570388 or visit YarbroughAcres.com.V

It is easy to see the conformation and movement that make Presley a champion. He is a pinto Dutch Warmblood and stands at Yarbrough Acres in Fort Lupton, Colo.


The Fence Post breeder’s connection 2 0 1 2

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The Fence Post breeder’s connection 20 1 2

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Th e F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s connection 2012

Blue Valentine continues to be a favorite with area ranch horse breeders by Tony Bruguiere Ft. Collins, Colo.

T

he Quarter Horse is America’s horse. The American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) was formed in 1940 and has over 4 million Quarter Horses in its registry. The foundation for the modern Quarter Horse is built on names like Joe Hancock, Blue Valentine, Driftwood, Leo, Sugar Bars, Easy Jet, King P-234, Wimpy, Poco Bueno, Dash for Cash, and the legendary Three Bars. Although the Quarter Horse is extremely versatile and can be found in many disciplines including racing and even dressage, it really excels as a western performance horse and on the ranch as

a working horse. Many Quarter Horses perform equally well in the performance arena and on the ranch as a working cow horse. An outstanding example of this blend of arena and working horse was the legendary Blue Valentine. Blue Valentine, AQHA No. 0097116 was a Blue Roan stallion foaled in 1956 by the legendary Red Man and out of Beautys Dream. Red Man was a well-known sire of top ranch mounts throughout the Arizona cattle country, and was a son of Joe Hancock. Like has sire and grandsire, Blue Valentine had speed, good bone, gentle disposition, longevity and cow

Chip Merritt’s father and Grandfather owned the foundation Quarter Horse Blue Valentine until the horse died in 1980. Chip and Kathy Merritt and their sons Corey (L) and Brady with Fox Blue, one of their Merritt Quarter Horse reference sires.


The Fence Post breeder’s connection 20 1 2

sense. He also had strong genes and passed his favorable traits on to 210 AQHA registered foals. Blue Valentine richly deserves his place as one of the great foundation ranch and performance sires. In recognition of this remarkable horse the AQHA plans to induct Blue Valentine into its Hall of Fame. Blue Valentine died in 1980, but there are four breeding operations in Colorado and Wyoming that carry on the Blue Valentine line. Merritt Quarter Horses and KeSa Quarter Horses from the Fort Collins, Colo., area and The Bath Bros Ranch and Vista Grande Ranch from Laramie, Wyo. King Merritt and Hyde Merritt acquired Blue Valentine and owned him until his death in 1980 on Hyde Merritt’s Wyoming ranch. Chip Merritt has continued the tradition started by his father and grandfather of breeding top quality quarter horses with the Blue Valentine and Hancock blood lines on his Merritt Quarter Horse ranch outside of Windsor, Colo. “They are not only good rodeo horses, but you can do most anything on them” Merritt says, “ranch work, ranch rodeo, trail riding, pleasure, barrel racing and speed events.” KeSa Quarter Horses, located 10 miles east of Fort Collins, Colo., breeds high percentage foundation Driftwoods and Blue Valentines. Sam Shoultz said, “Our reference sires, Mr. Junewood, Blue Fox Hancock, Driftwood Sensation, and Hancock Red Fox, have all earned Open AQHA performance points in the cattle events and all carry

The running M brand of the historic Bath Brothers Ranch in Laramie, Wyo. The family ranch is currently owned by Randy Dunn and continues to produce top performing ranch horses with plenty of legendary Blue Valentine bloodlines.

time proven working genetics.” The KeSa stallion Blue Fox Hancock, which is 43.75 percent Blue Valentine, was the 2009 reserve AllAround High Point Champion in all events, senior and open division, winning a new horse trailer from AQHA. Dick Van Pelt of Vista Grande Ranch, which is located up against the foothills just south of Laramie, Wyo., crosses his Blue Valentine bloodlines with Joe Hancock and Leo to produce top quality, ranch bred, working cow horses. “Our big blue stud, Blue Hancock Cowboy, is a true blue, stands 15.3, and is 22 percent Joe Hancock. He has consistently thrown a lot of color. Our stud, Blues Roan Hancock, sired an Oklahoma Foundation Halter Champion which has proven himself in continued on page 16

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Th e F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s connection 2012

Blue Valentine ... continued from page 15

the arena and the show ring,” said Van Pelt. “Our string of top quality ranch bred working cow horses goes back to Blue Valentine, Joe Hancock and Leo. It doesn’t matter whether you rope, cut, barrel race or just need a good tough ranch horse, we have something that will fit you.” The fourth ranch is the historic 1868 Bath Bros Ranch of Laramie, Wyo. Bath Bros horses are the Blue Valentine, Driftwood, Hancock crosses that really shine on the ranch and in the arena. Billy Ward, seven-time NFR Pickup Man, rides Bath Bros geldings. Randy Dunn says, “Our program includes six grandsons and 31 granddaughters of Blue Valentine. We are ranchers raising good horses!” “Blue Valentine was the sire of top ranch and roping horses. He transfers

this ability very strongly to his offspring. You can almost be certain that if you have a Blue Valentine bred horse, he will have a lot of ability, but he won’t have a lot of attitude,” said Sam Shoultz of KeSa quarter Horses, “You can breed him (Blue Valentine) to mares of the same breeding or to mares of different lineages and you still get the same type of personality. He had a very strong genetic stamp that he passed on.” These good friends get together in Laramie, Wyo., every year to offer outstanding animals from their breeding programs. The Come to the Source horse sale has been held in Laramie on the last weekend in August for 14 years, and if you are looking for a horse with bloodlines that have stood the test of time, start making your plans now to “Come to the Source” in 2012.V

Co-owners Sam Shoultz (L) and Ken Matzner of KeSa Quarter Horse, with their prize stud Blue Fox Hancock and some of the hardware, including the trailer, that he won on the way to being the AQHA 2009 All-Around High Point Reserve Champion.


The Fence Post breeder’s connection 20 1 2

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Blue Valentine, a blue roan stallion AQHA No. 0097116, was foaled in Arizona in 1956 by Redman and out of Beautys Dream. His grand sire was the famous Leo Hancock. Blue Valentine went on to sire 210 AQHA registered foals before his death in 1980. The AQHA is considering Blue Valentine for induction into the Sam Shoultz (L) of KeSa Quarter Horses and Dick Van Pelt of Vista Grande Ranch man the phones at the very successful Come to the Source production sale held every year in August at the fairgrounds in Laramie, Wyo.

American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame. Photo courtesy of Sam Shoultz, KeSa Quarter Horses


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Th e F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s connection 2012

Rocky Mountain Horse Expo March 9 - 11, 2012

National Western Complex, Denver, CO “Ride with the Experts” program will continue with new and returning clinicians. Friday and Saturday evenings during the Rocky Mountain Horse Expo, we will have a new “Mane Event”... stay tuned for more details!

www.RockyMountainHorseExpo.com


The Fence Post breeder’s connection 20 1 2

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Th e F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s connection 2012

Grunden Ranch Morgans by Robyn Scherer, M.Agr. Staff Reporter

F

or those in the Morgan horse industry, Grunch Ranch Morgans is a house name. However, it took many years of careful breeding to create such a reputation. The ranch was started in 1969 by Harvey Grunden, when he bought his first Morgan. He concentrated the breeding program by using Flyhawk. “Flyhawk was well known as one of the greatest sires of the Morgan breed — he sired many great Morgans and his influence is still seen in many breeding programs who seek his big, ground-covering trot, dense bone, toughness and athleticism,” according to Sport Morgan Breeders Ltd.

The other stallion’s bloodlines that are concentrated in the herd are those of Jubilee King. According to Sport Morgan Breeders Ltd., “Jubilee King was a big golden chestnut with flaxen mane and tail. He was rich in the blood of Daniel Lambert and is remembered for his superb style and his highly carried tail. His naturally high carried head was topped with tiny ears and gentle eyes. These characteristics as well as his springy step and big, wideopen trot are found in his descendants through many generations.” The ranch is now owned and operated by Harvey’s son Harlan and his wife Tammy. Harlan is the third

Left to Right: Harlan riding Nodaway Bobby Roberts, Tammy riding RG Bo Bonanza, Megan riding RG Regency Chester and the far right person is Hance Grunden riding RG Tuff Act To Follow. Photo courtesy of the Grunden Family


The Fence Post breeder’s connection 20 1 2

generation on the ranch, located in Curtis, Neb. They still strive to breed high quality Morgans, and have kept the ancient bloodlines alive. “The Morgan disposition is superb. They have a nice, easy, smooth ride, which intrigued us. Since Dad brought home the first Morgan in 1969, we have been hooked. We have realized this will be a part of our life forever,” said Harlan Grunden. The Grundens currently have 82 horses, which consist of five standing stallions, brood mares and young horses. “We have a lot of young horses who are not in production this year. We also had 16 foals born this last year,” he said. The horses the Grunden’s own are the foundation horses for many other breeders across the country. “We constantly breed for strong bone, straight legs, and good confirmation. Since our horses are on free range, they have common sense bred into them. They know how to negotiate hills, tree branches slapping them and know what deer, turkeys and other wildlife is,” said Harlan Grunden. The Grundens still use the concentrated Flyhawk genetics, because of his consistency. Born in 1926, Flyhawk was very popular in his time because he had a lot of characteristics that people really liked. He had a long reaching, extended ground covering trot which he was famous for, according to Grunden. Harlan believes in breeding consistent horses, rather than chasing fads. “A breeder in Kansas told my Dad

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A group of foals being halter broke at the Grunden Ranch. Photo courtesy of the Grunden Family

not to chase fads, because people will always come back to the foundation. That’s what we have done. We want to breed good quality horses with good confirmation and a sound mind,” he said. The Grunden’s have sold horses to 26 states and the Netherlands. One of the main things they breed for is disposition. “Good disposition is the utmost importance. You need to have a kind, gentle horse to make you want to be a part of their life. This is enhanced even more by our special attention they get GRM Katie Bar the Door with Hance Grunden. from imprinting and halter Photo courtesy of the Grunden Family breaking at a very young age (birth to two weeks),” said Grunden. They have also sold foundation horses internationally. In 1979, the Grunden’s sold a stallion named Funquest Meddler to a gentleman in Germany. That was the first Morgan horse that was introduced into the country. continued on page 22


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Th e F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s connection 2012

Grunden Ranch Morgans ... continued from page 21

“We had the very first Morgan that set foot on German soil. The gentleman we sold the stallion to worked for the Nebraska Department of Agriculture, and was over in Germany promoting U.S. products. He had to start his own Morgan Horses Association in Germany, just to be able to bring the stallion over,” said Grunden. There are still Morgans in Germany, and they work with the American Morgan Horse Association to double register horses that are in Germany. The Funquest line is another line that the Grunden’s own. They picked up a lot of animals before the herd was dispersed in the 1980s. “I have one of the largest pure Funquest herds. I don’t know of anyone else who has that many,” he said. Funquest Farms was one of the major developers of the Morgan breed.

“Steward Hazard had a plan and a goal in mind. He always bred to compliment. He was quite a developer of the Morgan horse for refinement, and structural correctness,” said Grunden. This foundation has allowed the Grundens to consistently produce high quality animals. The horses that the Grunden’s sell are used for a variety of different disciplines, from western to English, and from trail classes to driving. They are also used as a cow horse, as well as buggy horses for the Amish. He said, “The first thing a person sees is the head. If this horse has a good head with a big and gentle eye, you will automatically continue to look and like what you see. Remember, it costs just as much in feed to care for a good horse as it does a poor headed and confirmation horse.”

Hance Grunden and Bodee at the Frontier Co. Fair with the Working Cattle Class. Photo courtesy of the Grunden Family


The Fence Post breeder’s connection 20 1 2

The Grunden’s are also very active in the show ring, and breed horses for competition. They have had horses compete internationally at the Combined Driving Events, and they have won. They have also been exhibited in Western, English, Pleasure Driving and Carriage classes. “We show in three or four local shows a year, and then we also show at the Nebraska State Fair, as well as Nationals. Since the Morgan horses started showing at the state fair in the early 1970s, I am the only Morgan exhibitor who has never missed a fair. I show in Western classes and driving classes,” said Grunden. Harlan has help in showing from his wife Tammy and his two children, Megan and Hance. Both children started showing in the lead-line class at the age of 18 months. In 2010, Megan showed RG Regency Chester, a gelding she was given when she turned eight, at the Grand National Morgan Show. The pair was World Champion English Trail, National Champion Western Trail Open, National Champion English Trail Amateur, National Champion Western Trail Amateur and Reserve National Champion English Trail Open. They also finished third in Western Trail and Versatile Morgan. In 2011, Harlan and Tammy took their senior stallion RD’s Steward’s Monarch to the Grand National Morgan Show. There they placed in every carriage class they entered, winning the national title for handler’s choice. In addition to the horse operation, the Grundens also operate a 350 head commercial Angus cross cow/calf operation. The cattle graze on corn

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RG Stuart’s Monarch pulling a buggy at the 2011 Nebraska State Fair with Harlan driving and Tammy Grunden as passenger. Photo courtesy of the Grunden Family

stalks in the winter months, and on pasture the rest of the year. However, the horses operation is where his real passion lies, and Harlan hopes to continue to breed high quality Morgans. “I want to continue to breed the common sense type Morgan horse, and continue to concentrate and preserve the old lines,” he said. V

A stud colt named GRM Funquest King O Fancy. Photo courtesy of the Grunden Family


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Th e F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s connection 2012


THE FENCE POST BREEDER’S CONNECTION 20 1 2

            pure outlaw

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Lonesome Lonely 1995 Black Homozygous Tobiano

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harrow sections: start at 4’ and sold in even feet. Available With or Without pull Bar original Model: $98 per linear ft. hammer Model: $78 per linear ft. Combination Model: $88 per linear ft. pull Bar: 2 1/2” x 2 1/2” x 1/4” square tubing using 1/4” high tensile Chain to attach pull ring and harrow sections $13.50 per foot

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Th e F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s connection 2012

2005 Red Dun Stallion

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The Fence Post breeder’s connection 20 1 2

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KING BIJOU 15 h. 1996 golden buckskin stallion. 83% foundation bred, athletic ability, conformation, cowyness, & amazing color. He is loaded with natural talent, a gentle disposition, a phenominal mind, & an eye for a cow - which along with his good looks, he consistently passes on to his prodigy. Seasoned ranch horse & a proven big time rope horse on both ends, Sired by Bijou Tony Fols, 4 time World Contender in Roping & Skips Fols was the 1987 calf roping champion. Predominant color producer, EVA negative & vaccinated. Realistic fees, performance bred.

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Come visit us to see our nice prospects for sale, an extended pedigree and/or for more information.

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Th e F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s connection 2012

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1 The F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s c onnection 2012

si 80

The G enet ics A re H ere F or Po (First tenti Down al G Dash si 10 reatn 5-Eas ess! y Hen r yetta si 90

, Easy

Jet si

100)

A Fu ll Bro ther To Le ad

Full brother to ing S 4-Time G1 Winner, ire H OLLA Champion FOUR FORTY BLAST ND E si 112 ($321,356), G1 Winner ASE! HOLLAND EASE si 109 ($361,227), 2-Time G1 Placed LAS ALAMITOS si 97 ($202,480, dam of Texas Hi-Point Three-Year-Old Colt, G1 Winner RAGAZZO si 102, $559,500, 2-Time G2/G3 Property of Winner GIORGINO si 99, 2011, $267,704), G1/G3 Placed John R. Hawks Brisco County Jr si 95 ($118,225), G1 Placed Dividends Declared si 94 ($93,160, dam of 2011 G1 Winner 2012 Fee: $750 HIGH RATE OF RETURN si 99, $452,635), etc. With Considerations Cooled Semen By The #1 All-Time Leading Sire of Money Earners, Available World Champion FIRST DOWN DASH si 105 ($857,256). Eligibilities: Speedhorse Races, Colorado Bred Out of An All-Time Leading Dam of ROM Program EASY HENRYETTA si 90 ($18,402).

Hawks’ HigH Mesa RancH

John & Debbie Hawks 9249 High Mesa Road / Olathe, CO 81425 / (970) 323-6811 2

SPEEDHORSE

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The F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s c onnection 2012


The Fence Post breeder’s connection 2 0 1 2

Table of Contents

Yarbrough Acres......................6 Blue Valentine.......................14 Grunden Ranch Morgans......20

Office at 501 8th Avenue, Greeley, Colorado. Mailing address: P.O. Box 1690, Greeley, Colorado, 80632. Telephone: (970) 686-5691. FAX: (970) 352-7164. Advertising Deadline: 5 p.m. Wednesday. Published every Monday. The Fence Post (USPS No. 547650; ISSN# 0274-7308) is published weekly for $55 per year by Greeley Publishing Co., at the offices of the Fence Post, P.O. Box 1690, Greeley, Colorado, 80632. Postmaster: Send address changes to the Fence Post, P.O. Box 1690, Greeley, Colorado, 80632. Periodicals postage paid at Greeley, CO., and additional mailing offices. Subscriptions outside the continental U.S. $81/year. ŠCopyright Greeley Publishing Co., 1990. All rights reserved. Reproduction without permission of the publisher is prohibited. We advise anyone who submits material to the Fence Post that doing so constitutes a consent for the Fence Post to publish the material as it chooses, including but not limited to all print, electronic, and archival versions, without any further compensation to the author. The views and opinions of the editorial does not reflect the views and opinions of the Fence Post staff.

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The F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s c onnection 2012


The Fence Post breeder’s connection 2 0 1 2

30TH ANNIVARSARY

FOUR STATES AG EXPO

MARCH 15-18, 2012 MONTEZUMA COUNTY FAIRGROUNDS CORTEZ, CO

In agriculture, growing

is what we do best.

4th Annual

All Breeds Bull & Heifer Sale in partnership with Southern Colorado Livestock Auction.

Saturday, March 18

1:00 p.m.

We’re planning a grand 2012 show to honor our history and open the gate to our future. Check back here often to seee how we’re growing our 30th anniversary event!

Pen included for sale animals only. Pens for display livestock available for a fee.

For consignment contracts and more information:

Entry deadline: February 1 Catalogue deadline: January 1

(970) 529-3486

www.fourstatesagexpo.com info@fourstatesagexpo.com

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The F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s c onnection 2012

Yarbrough Acres in Fort Lupton, Colo., Warmblood breeding and much more by Tony Bruguiere Ft. Collins, Colo.

C

olorado has a diversity of horse breeding programs. In addition to some outstanding western horse lines, there are excellent breeding operations that feature Sport horses. Sport horses compete in traditional Olympic equestrian sporting events and are bred for specific qualities in their conformation, movement and temperament. Although any horse breed can compete in these events, one of the most popular is the Warmblood, which is not a breed in the truest sense, but rather a type of horse. At its most basic definition, a Warmblood is a cross between a hot-blooded Thoroughbred

and a cold-blooded draft horse. There are a lot of different Warmbloods, but perhaps the most popular for competition is the Dutch Warmblood. The competitive Dutch Warmblood is a large, somewhat spirited, but mostly even tempered, and highly trainable horse. Most Dutch Warmbloods are black, brown, bay, chestnut or gray. There are also a number of tobiano pinto horses from the influence of the stallion Samber. The terms “paint” and “pinto” are used to describe spotted horses, but there is a clear difference between the two terms. A pinto may be of any breed or combination of breeds. For a horse

A trainer works with one of the Yarbrough Acres horses to use up some athletic energy prior to a riding lesson for a youngster. Ranch manager, Shelley Yarbrough, gives riding lessons in western and english.


The Fence Post breeder’s connection 2 0 1 2

to be registered as an American Paint Horse, it must have registered American Quarter Horse, American Paint Horse or Thoroughbred parents. Jeri Yarbrough, owner of Yarbrough Acres in Fort Lupton, Colo., specializes in breeding champion, pinto Dutch Warmbloods. Jeri competed for many years on her Paint horse Son of a Delight (Bear), who was a USDF Paint Horse of the Year. “My paint, Bear, was a Quarter Horse and 16.2, tall, and leggy.” said Yarbrough, “I bought him from Virgil Lawson down in Wetmore. Virgil called him ‘that tall, white, leggy, thing’ and he didn’t like him, but I thought he’s going to be perfect for me for dressage. That ‘tall, white, leggy, thing’ did all right, because he’s still the top ranking paint horse in the nation.” Jeri Yarbrough started the Yarbrough Acres breeding operation by importing her black and white pinto stud, Presley. Presley is a beautifully colored dutch stallion with an exceptional temperament and powerful movement. Presley’s pedigree contains some of the best Dutch bloodlines, Olympic Ferro, one of the most well known and most successful dressage stallions in the world, and Ulft, known around the world as a top sire of both dressage and jumping horses. Also Presley’s sire Samber received a rare 10 for temperament and trainability in Holland. Presley was a good choice by Yarbrough for a stallion as he passes his athleticism and temperament to his offspring. “His offspring like people a lot, and they are very willing and easy to work with. They are not real ‘hot’ and are suitable for anyone from an

Jeri Yarbrough, owner of Yarbrough Acres in Fort Lupton, Colo., with two of her foals from this years breeding. Besides breeding her own horses, Jeri does AI for clients and foals, imprints and starts foals at her breeding facility.

amateur to a professional rider,” said Yarbrough. Yarbrough selected her 13 broodmares with equal care. “Our top quality sport horses combine the best of European and American bloodlines. I hand selected each Warmblood and Thoroughbred broodmare at our farm for their exceptional pedigree and correct conformation,” said Yarbrough. When it comes to Sport horses, the buyer has to do a lot of due diligence and have complete faith in the breeder, as Warmbloods are not for the financially faint of heart. Semen Ranch manager, Shelley Yarbrough, gives riding prices run from $1,000 lessons in western and english. She also works to $5,000 per unit. Foals are from $7,000 to with 4-H kids on their Equitation projects. $15,000 and prices rise depending on bloodline, training and competitive results. Breeding stallions like Yarbrough Acres Presley are well into the six figure range. continued on page 8

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Yarbrough Acres ... continued from page 7

Jeri Yarbrough has put a lot of effort into making sure that her horses and those that she boards for others are well cared for. No detail is too small. The large performance arena has a special sand mix to insure the soundness of the horses. Pens are spacious to give horses plenty of opportunity to run. All animals get at least half a day in two to five acre pastures with other horses just being a horse. “The nicest thing that anyone has ever said about my place is “your horses are happy” and it’s because “they get to be with their friends!” She said “Horses are social animals. So I let them be with their friends and they get to go out and just be a horse — and I think that it makes them a better performance horse.” Besides the Warmblood breeding program, Yarbrough Acres is a premier breeding, sales, boarding and training facility. Jeri’s sister Shelley Yarbrough is the ranch manager and also does the

training in western and english riding. In addition, Shelley does a lot of work with 4-H kids in the Equitation projects. Yarbrough Acres also does AI breeding for clients. They foal out the babies, imprint them and do the halter training and starting of the foals. Jeri Yarbrough puts a high value on her experience and integrity, “I want to make sure that the horse is going to match the rider, so that the horse and the person have the best chance of being successful. I competed hard for 20 years, so I know a lot of people in the business and a lot of top professionals have my horses.” Yarbrough continued, “These guys can buy babies for their future competition prospects anywhere, but they have come to Colorado and buy horses from me. That’s really exciting for me.” For more information about Yarbrough Acres, please call (303) 8570388 or visit YarbroughAcres.com.V

It is easy to see the conformation and movement that make Presley a champion. He is a pinto Dutch Warmblood and stands at Yarbrough Acres in Fort Lupton, Colo.


The Fence Post breeder’s connection 2 0 1 2

the

Hitchin’ Post ADVERTISE YOUR HORSE HERE

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of the Rockies

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The Fence Post breeder’s connection 20 1 2

3257 Willownook Ranch Trail, Elizabeth

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The Fence Post breeder’s connection 20 1 2

RANCH FOR SALE

Miles Manufacturing

Any Size • Any Option

One of a kind perfect Horse setup. Barns, stalls, runs, corrals, arena, round pen, automatic waterers, pastures fenced and cross fenced with excellent irrigation water rights, domestic/stock well and public water. Executive home, trees, greenhouse, plus private location! This emaculate 68 acre property is located just east of Fort Collins by Eaton, Colorado. $850,000 Brokers Welcome!

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NatioNal WEstErN stoCk shoW National Western Commercial Female sale & show Breds & Yearlings Show: January 18, 9:30am Sale January 18, 2:30pm Stockman’s Social January 18, 4:30 In the Yards

TR

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IO N  A

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AT

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Pen of Prospect Calves

Show: January 15, 2:00pm Sale: January 16, 10am In the Yards

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Th e F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s connection 2012

Blue Valentine continues to be a favorite with area ranch horse breeders by Tony Bruguiere Ft. Collins, Colo.

T

he Quarter Horse is America’s horse. The American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) was formed in 1940 and has over 4 million Quarter Horses in its registry. The foundation for the modern Quarter Horse is built on names like Joe Hancock, Blue Valentine, Driftwood, Leo, Sugar Bars, Easy Jet, King P-234, Wimpy, Poco Bueno, Dash for Cash, and the legendary Three Bars. Although the Quarter Horse is extremely versatile and can be found in many disciplines including racing and even dressage, it really excels as a western performance horse and on the ranch as

a working horse. Many Quarter Horses perform equally well in the performance arena and on the ranch as a working cow horse. An outstanding example of this blend of arena and working horse was the legendary Blue Valentine. Blue Valentine, AQHA No. 0097116 was a Blue Roan stallion foaled in 1956 by the legendary Red Man and out of Beautys Dream. Red Man was a well-known sire of top ranch mounts throughout the Arizona cattle country, and was a son of Joe Hancock. Like has sire and grandsire, Blue Valentine had speed, good bone, gentle disposition, longevity and cow

Chip Merritt’s father and Grandfather owned the foundation Quarter Horse Blue Valentine until the horse died in 1980. Chip and Kathy Merritt and their sons Corey (L) and Brady with Fox Blue, one of their Merritt Quarter Horse reference sires.


The Fence Post breeder’s connection 20 1 2

sense. He also had strong genes and passed his favorable traits on to 210 AQHA registered foals. Blue Valentine richly deserves his place as one of the great foundation ranch and performance sires. In recognition of this remarkable horse the AQHA plans to induct Blue Valentine into its Hall of Fame. Blue Valentine died in 1980, but there are four breeding operations in Colorado and Wyoming that carry on the Blue Valentine line. Merritt Quarter Horses and KeSa Quarter Horses from the Fort Collins, Colo., area and The Bath Bros Ranch and Vista Grande Ranch from Laramie, Wyo. King Merritt and Hyde Merritt acquired Blue Valentine and owned him until his death in 1980 on Hyde Merritt’s Wyoming ranch. Chip Merritt has continued the tradition started by his father and grandfather of breeding top quality quarter horses with the Blue Valentine and Hancock blood lines on his Merritt Quarter Horse ranch outside of Windsor, Colo. “They are not only good rodeo horses, but you can do most anything on them” Merritt says, “ranch work, ranch rodeo, trail riding, pleasure, barrel racing and speed events.” KeSa Quarter Horses, located 10 miles east of Fort Collins, Colo., breeds high percentage foundation Driftwoods and Blue Valentines. Sam Shoultz said, “Our reference sires, Mr. Junewood, Blue Fox Hancock, Driftwood Sensation, and Hancock Red Fox, have all earned Open AQHA performance points in the cattle events and all carry

The running M brand of the historic Bath Brothers Ranch in Laramie, Wyo. The family ranch is currently owned by Randy Dunn and continues to produce top performing ranch horses with plenty of legendary Blue Valentine bloodlines.

time proven working genetics.” The KeSa stallion Blue Fox Hancock, which is 43.75 percent Blue Valentine, was the 2009 reserve AllAround High Point Champion in all events, senior and open division, winning a new horse trailer from AQHA. Dick Van Pelt of Vista Grande Ranch, which is located up against the foothills just south of Laramie, Wyo., crosses his Blue Valentine bloodlines with Joe Hancock and Leo to produce top quality, ranch bred, working cow horses. “Our big blue stud, Blue Hancock Cowboy, is a true blue, stands 15.3, and is 22 percent Joe Hancock. He has consistently thrown a lot of color. Our stud, Blues Roan Hancock, sired an Oklahoma Foundation Halter Champion which has proven himself in continued on page 16

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Th e F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s connection 2012

Blue Valentine ... continued from page 15

the arena and the show ring,” said Van Pelt. “Our string of top quality ranch bred working cow horses goes back to Blue Valentine, Joe Hancock and Leo. It doesn’t matter whether you rope, cut, barrel race or just need a good tough ranch horse, we have something that will fit you.” The fourth ranch is the historic 1868 Bath Bros Ranch of Laramie, Wyo. Bath Bros horses are the Blue Valentine, Driftwood, Hancock crosses that really shine on the ranch and in the arena. Billy Ward, seven-time NFR Pickup Man, rides Bath Bros geldings. Randy Dunn says, “Our program includes six grandsons and 31 granddaughters of Blue Valentine. We are ranchers raising good horses!” “Blue Valentine was the sire of top ranch and roping horses. He transfers

this ability very strongly to his offspring. You can almost be certain that if you have a Blue Valentine bred horse, he will have a lot of ability, but he won’t have a lot of attitude,” said Sam Shoultz of KeSa quarter Horses, “You can breed him (Blue Valentine) to mares of the same breeding or to mares of different lineages and you still get the same type of personality. He had a very strong genetic stamp that he passed on.” These good friends get together in Laramie, Wyo., every year to offer outstanding animals from their breeding programs. The Come to the Source horse sale has been held in Laramie on the last weekend in August for 14 years, and if you are looking for a horse with bloodlines that have stood the test of time, start making your plans now to “Come to the Source” in 2012.V

Co-owners Sam Shoultz (L) and Ken Matzner of KeSa Quarter Horse, with their prize stud Blue Fox Hancock and some of the hardware, including the trailer, that he won on the way to being the AQHA 2009 All-Around High Point Reserve Champion.


The Fence Post breeder’s connection 20 1 2

17

Blue Valentine, a blue roan stallion AQHA No. 0097116, was foaled in Arizona in 1956 by Redman and out of Beautys Dream. His grand sire was the famous Leo Hancock. Blue Valentine went on to sire 210 AQHA registered foals before his death in 1980. The AQHA is considering Blue Valentine for induction into the Sam Shoultz (L) of KeSa Quarter Horses and Dick Van Pelt of Vista Grande Ranch man the phones at the very successful Come to the Source production sale held every year in August at the fairgrounds in Laramie, Wyo.

American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame. Photo courtesy of Sam Shoultz, KeSa Quarter Horses


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Th e F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s connection 2012

Rocky Mountain Horse Expo March 9 - 11, 2012

National Western Complex, Denver, CO “Ride with the Experts” program will continue with new and returning clinicians. Friday and Saturday evenings during the Rocky Mountain Horse Expo, we will have a new “Mane Event”... stay tuned for more details!

www.RockyMountainHorseExpo.com


The Fence Post breeder’s connection 20 1 2

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Th e F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s connection 2012

Grunden Ranch Morgans by Robyn Scherer, M.Agr. Staff Reporter

F

or those in the Morgan horse industry, Grunch Ranch Morgans is a house name. However, it took many years of careful breeding to create such a reputation. The ranch was started in 1969 by Harvey Grunden, when he bought his first Morgan. He concentrated the breeding program by using Flyhawk. “Flyhawk was well known as one of the greatest sires of the Morgan breed — he sired many great Morgans and his influence is still seen in many breeding programs who seek his big, ground-covering trot, dense bone, toughness and athleticism,” according to Sport Morgan Breeders Ltd.

The other stallion’s bloodlines that are concentrated in the herd are those of Jubilee King. According to Sport Morgan Breeders Ltd., “Jubilee King was a big golden chestnut with flaxen mane and tail. He was rich in the blood of Daniel Lambert and is remembered for his superb style and his highly carried tail. His naturally high carried head was topped with tiny ears and gentle eyes. These characteristics as well as his springy step and big, wideopen trot are found in his descendants through many generations.” The ranch is now owned and operated by Harvey’s son Harlan and his wife Tammy. Harlan is the third

Left to Right: Harlan riding Nodaway Bobby Roberts, Tammy riding RG Bo Bonanza, Megan riding RG Regency Chester and the far right person is Hance Grunden riding RG Tuff Act To Follow. Photo courtesy of the Grunden Family


The Fence Post breeder’s connection 20 1 2

generation on the ranch, located in Curtis, Neb. They still strive to breed high quality Morgans, and have kept the ancient bloodlines alive. “The Morgan disposition is superb. They have a nice, easy, smooth ride, which intrigued us. Since Dad brought home the first Morgan in 1969, we have been hooked. We have realized this will be a part of our life forever,” said Harlan Grunden. The Grundens currently have 82 horses, which consist of five standing stallions, brood mares and young horses. “We have a lot of young horses who are not in production this year. We also had 16 foals born this last year,” he said. The horses the Grunden’s own are the foundation horses for many other breeders across the country. “We constantly breed for strong bone, straight legs, and good confirmation. Since our horses are on free range, they have common sense bred into them. They know how to negotiate hills, tree branches slapping them and know what deer, turkeys and other wildlife is,” said Harlan Grunden. The Grundens still use the concentrated Flyhawk genetics, because of his consistency. Born in 1926, Flyhawk was very popular in his time because he had a lot of characteristics that people really liked. He had a long reaching, extended ground covering trot which he was famous for, according to Grunden. Harlan believes in breeding consistent horses, rather than chasing fads. “A breeder in Kansas told my Dad

21

A group of foals being halter broke at the Grunden Ranch. Photo courtesy of the Grunden Family

not to chase fads, because people will always come back to the foundation. That’s what we have done. We want to breed good quality horses with good confirmation and a sound mind,” he said. The Grunden’s have sold horses to 26 states and the Netherlands. One of the main things they breed for is disposition. “Good disposition is the utmost importance. You need to have a kind, gentle horse to make you want to be a part of their life. This is enhanced even more by our special attention they get GRM Katie Bar the Door with Hance Grunden. from imprinting and halter Photo courtesy of the Grunden Family breaking at a very young age (birth to two weeks),” said Grunden. They have also sold foundation horses internationally. In 1979, the Grunden’s sold a stallion named Funquest Meddler to a gentleman in Germany. That was the first Morgan horse that was introduced into the country. continued on page 22


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Th e F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s connection 2012

Grunden Ranch Morgans ... continued from page 21

“We had the very first Morgan that set foot on German soil. The gentleman we sold the stallion to worked for the Nebraska Department of Agriculture, and was over in Germany promoting U.S. products. He had to start his own Morgan Horses Association in Germany, just to be able to bring the stallion over,” said Grunden. There are still Morgans in Germany, and they work with the American Morgan Horse Association to double register horses that are in Germany. The Funquest line is another line that the Grunden’s own. They picked up a lot of animals before the herd was dispersed in the 1980s. “I have one of the largest pure Funquest herds. I don’t know of anyone else who has that many,” he said. Funquest Farms was one of the major developers of the Morgan breed.

“Steward Hazard had a plan and a goal in mind. He always bred to compliment. He was quite a developer of the Morgan horse for refinement, and structural correctness,” said Grunden. This foundation has allowed the Grundens to consistently produce high quality animals. The horses that the Grunden’s sell are used for a variety of different disciplines, from western to English, and from trail classes to driving. They are also used as a cow horse, as well as buggy horses for the Amish. He said, “The first thing a person sees is the head. If this horse has a good head with a big and gentle eye, you will automatically continue to look and like what you see. Remember, it costs just as much in feed to care for a good horse as it does a poor headed and confirmation horse.”

Hance Grunden and Bodee at the Frontier Co. Fair with the Working Cattle Class. Photo courtesy of the Grunden Family


The Fence Post breeder’s connection 20 1 2

The Grunden’s are also very active in the show ring, and breed horses for competition. They have had horses compete internationally at the Combined Driving Events, and they have won. They have also been exhibited in Western, English, Pleasure Driving and Carriage classes. “We show in three or four local shows a year, and then we also show at the Nebraska State Fair, as well as Nationals. Since the Morgan horses started showing at the state fair in the early 1970s, I am the only Morgan exhibitor who has never missed a fair. I show in Western classes and driving classes,” said Grunden. Harlan has help in showing from his wife Tammy and his two children, Megan and Hance. Both children started showing in the lead-line class at the age of 18 months. In 2010, Megan showed RG Regency Chester, a gelding she was given when she turned eight, at the Grand National Morgan Show. The pair was World Champion English Trail, National Champion Western Trail Open, National Champion English Trail Amateur, National Champion Western Trail Amateur and Reserve National Champion English Trail Open. They also finished third in Western Trail and Versatile Morgan. In 2011, Harlan and Tammy took their senior stallion RD’s Steward’s Monarch to the Grand National Morgan Show. There they placed in every carriage class they entered, winning the national title for handler’s choice. In addition to the horse operation, the Grundens also operate a 350 head commercial Angus cross cow/calf operation. The cattle graze on corn

23

RG Stuart’s Monarch pulling a buggy at the 2011 Nebraska State Fair with Harlan driving and Tammy Grunden as passenger. Photo courtesy of the Grunden Family

stalks in the winter months, and on pasture the rest of the year. However, the horses operation is where his real passion lies, and Harlan hopes to continue to breed high quality Morgans. “I want to continue to breed the common sense type Morgan horse, and continue to concentrate and preserve the old lines,” he said. V

A stud colt named GRM Funquest King O Fancy. Photo courtesy of the Grunden Family


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Th e F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s connection 2012


THE FENCE POST BREEDER’S CONNECTION 20 1 2

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Th e F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s connection 2012


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Th e F e n c e P o st b r e e d e r ’ s connection 2012

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