For nights after discovering this skeleton, I had trouble sleeping. Couldn’t get the image out of my head. Instead, I extrapolated back to this horse’s final days – it died a pointless and likely painful, drawn-out death, getting tangled in branches by its blankets. Ridiculously, it had on two.
Pep and I found it while bushwhacking in the Oquirrh foothills. Best guess says this poor horse died two winters ago. The carcass has been picked clean and decomposed enough for that time frame, but not longer. There is still hair on its face and other parts.
It was in a dense mass of scrub oak, downhill from ridge leading towards Butterfield Canyon, maybe two miles from the nearest home. After dismounting, I got entangled just getting close enough for photos. It was wearing the horse blankets and shoes on all fours.
Coyotes and cold, perhaps. I’ll never know.
I do know this horse’s fate can serve as a heads-up for all of us horse owners and horse lovers. What would you do if your horse took off, got loose, or disappeared?
What steps can you take to prepare for such a scary scenario?
I look forward to your thoughts!