Sherwin ~Steve McClure (Reno)

I’ve rode a good share of horses. Years ago, after attending a number of his cattle clinics, Steve Lundean thought I owned my own cavvy since I was always on a different mount. He didn’t realize that Jen always kindly lent me a critter since I was horse poor!

Out west I always ride a company horse like the other hands do. These horses know the job, the stock and the land. Day workers often bring their own mounts but they already know the layout and the job.


At Sun Fire Stables, I rode them all. The steady Coda, Windy, Fire, Ceton, Bob, Ti, Little Bay, Pal and so many others. I’m proud to say that I was given the opportunity to help start some of them for Jen. When I began helping Steve at clinics I rode more than I can remember. I've rode dressage horses so tall you'd get a nosebleed and little stinkers that I should have passed on. Steve once wrote in a blog that “Reno will throw a leg over any horse at the request of any clinic participant without hesitation or fail.” I’m real proud of that. I've had good instruction.

In the martial arts you spar with as many different partners as you can. That way you stay fresh and each encounter teaches you something new. I believe the same can be said for riding.

That is until Sherwin arrived at Sun Fire Stables around four years ago. I first saw him down below in Sunset Lane soon after he arrived and he reminded me of Fire, a buckskin, that I thought very highly of. Now he didn't have the conformation of Fire but I liked him nonetheless. With Jen's permission I began working with him and we got along fine. He learned fast and I tried to learn from him.

Now Sherwin has a personality and likes to mess with you. He will try to pull your hat off your head when you are cleaning his front hooves as well as being very mouthy. I know I should work on eliminating both vices but it's kind of how we communicate. Well that and an apple once and a while.

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In no time he was following me around like a puppy. We ground tied and he accepted hobbling.

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Got his feet moving and following instruction on the ground including some lateral. In the saddle he had an easy to ride trot and that sold me. They say the best way to "straighten" out a horse is getting him to bend. And sure enough he soon softened and began to bend and supple up. We rode together indoors and in all weathers. He quickly took to ropinand dragging. To this day I catch him with a houlihan throw.

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With Jen's permission I began bringing him to Steve’s clinics and he took to cattle as well.

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Steve Lundean teaches low stress cattle movement and that's how it's done out west. "Slow is fast" he always says. As a team we aren't speedy but we're steady.

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Sherwin has been in pens with them, pushed them in the open, cut and sorted them, filled trailers as well as roped the beasts. He loves to lower his ears and give a little nip to the recalcitrant ones. We've worked in the heat as well as the rain and mud.

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In the meantime my granddaughter Chloe, a fine horseman, was training Sherwin for competition. She sure got him looking good.

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They both earned many a blue ribbon in both western and english together and she loves that horse.

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I've learned a lot from Sherwin. I consider him a partner as well as a friend. He'll be 13 this coming March and is still young. He has some physical complaints but don’t we all. If you've got a mind, ask Jen if you can ride him in a lesson. Put some miles on him. Be sure to tell him that Reno says "Hi". He'll know.

~ Steve McClure (Reno)

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

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