Natural Horseman  ~Steve McClure (Reno)

For me, Sun Fire Stables is a special place. It’s Jen and Dean and all the wonderful people and critters that make it what it is. I’ve visited many barns over the years and that is not always the case.  Now it’s always dangerous to single out one particular person in a group so special but it’s been on my mind to single out one other lady, besides Jen, who best personifies Sun Fire Stables for me. 

That lady, Karen Sizer, has been at Sun Fire a long time and she sure doesn’t need me to validate her but I’ll give it a try. If you’ve been a client at Sun Fire for any length of time I bet you know Karen and for all the right reasons. She’s soft spoken, gracious and one heck of a horseman.

As far as I know she has had six horses at Sun Fire, a veritable cavvy! Sadly three of them have since passed. Those three, Beau, Oky and Silli, now enjoying belly high grass, lived long productive lives. The surviving three, Nique, Lali, and Classi are now, I believe, late twenties and early thirties! This is not merely sheer luck but the mark of a dedicated horseman who cares for their stock. 

On many occasions, day or night, I would see a figure in the paddock, rain or snow, and sure enough it was Karen administering medicine or just checking on one of her charges. I’d come in from a lesson at 9:00 pm and there was Karen still  brushing one in a stall or cleaning hooves. That earned her a lot of respect from me and a lot of other folks. I’ve seen her in the saddle as well and that lady can sit a horse just as you would expect. She’s not “all hat and no cattle” but the complete package.

Some years ago I was doing the evening feeding. It was January, had snowed heavily the day before and the the temperature was now sub-zero. I loaded hay on the trailer hitched to the four wheeler and headed to the paddocks behind the outdoor. I got stuck past the pump house and I had to unhook the trailer to get the four wheeler moving. In the process I realized I had frozen the tips of my fingers and headed for the barn to check it out. Karen was there checking on her remuda and quietly asked me if I was alright and how she could help. She kindly offered me hand warmers to continue that night and extras for the next day.  That’s Karen. On social media, she is always writing a positive comment or encouraging someone’s effort. Always cheerful, I have never heard her utter a disparaging word about anyone. She always answered my equine questions and I’ve learned a lot from watching her interact with the horses. She works at the Project Day in the spring and helps out at the Fun Show in the summer. She’s good “eyes” at the barn making sure that things are safe and the critters are alright. I could go on but I’ve embarrassed her enough.

When you think about it she is kind, loyal, walks the walk, takes good care of the stock as well as being modest and dependable. Sounds like a real cowboy to me. 

~Steve McClure (Reno)

To read more by Steve McClure (Reno)--see below.

Insights by Steve -- I Can't

Insights by Steve -- Saddle Tracks

Insights by Steve -- Harmony and Horsemanship

Insights by Steve -- Sherwin

Insights by Steve -- Hobbling

Insights By Steve -- Roping Practice

Insights By Steve -- Support

Insights By Steve -- Sensei

Insights by Steve - Harmony

Insights by Steve-Centered in the Now