What we’re about….
Minam, Wallowa & the “Great Round-a-bout.” This is NE Oregon’s Grande Ronde country. The Cabin Creek breaks. Rough Fork Trail, Smith Mountain, Camp Five, Frye Meadow, Freezeout Saddle and the deepest gorge in North America – Hell’s Canyon. This is a place called Palmer Valley and is home to Snowbound Morgans.
Snowbound Morgans combine hardiness and class. They take this country and its elements in stride. They enjoy the company of their owners and are most content in a good partnership. They respond to the guidance of the well placed aid. They are honest to the core, possess a remarkable work ethic and are serious about their inherited responsibility to honor their patriarch and the breed’s founding sire, Justin Morgan himself. They just look at their lives and the world around them a little differently than many other horses. They are allowed to 'be horses,' but are expected to mind their manners. They live the legend of the breed. They are Snowbound Morgans.
We are among those most fortunate of souls whose hearts were captured by “Justin’s kids.” We didn’t choose them. They chose us. The first time we saw Champ, there was a special quality about the heart and mind of this chestnut gelding that could not be ignored or forgotten. But first we had three other horses to look at over several hundred miles that week. Turns out he waited for us. He knew we were a perfect fit. You can buy him anytime – for $8.65 million. The unique qualities of a Morgan are addictive. Nine other Morgans have followed, each having placed their own unique hoofprint signature on their own life, and on the bond they have with us. Recently at a clinic we were a part of with a nationally known clinician, he asked each rider, “What is it that you like about your horse?” I told him, “Being in his presence puts a lump in my throat.” To clarify, I wasn’t talking about a mindless, syrupy emotional response that attempts to transform an 1100# prey animal with lightning-fast reflexes into a combined caricature of Black Beauty, My Friend Flicka, Hidalgo & Secretariat… nor into an overgrown lap dog. If that makes sense to you, a few of them are waiting to put their mark on your heart. If you’re not serious about both the privilege and the responsibility of allowing them to both own and be owned, and are not looking for the equine partner of a lifetime, or if you are looking for a horse simply as a means to an end, you need read no further.
We are Mike and Barbara Weinkauf. We are not life-long horse professionals. But we sought them out. We know them. We listen to them. We learn from them. If you are looking for someone who can talk bloodlines, cross tendencies and champions from the ’92 Nationals until you’re too old to ride, I can guarantee you’ll be disappointed with us. If you want us to show you how to rope a calf or ride a fourth level dressage test, you’ll still be wanting when you leave here.
But we’re pretty good at being able to spot the real deal. So we work with Grand Prix Dressage riders, Bishop Mule Days multi-discipline winners, Mountain Trail Guides & Packers, Morgan Grand National & World Championship winners, Wild Horse Trainers & nationally known clinicians & trainers. There is one common denominator to all of them: they’re all ‘regular folks’ who have become trusted friends. So come look at the horses and let’s go ride the arena or The Breaks. No matter what horse you end up with, for whatever riding discipline you pursue, you will always have had the experience of Snowbound Morgan country and a Snowbound Morgan. Their heart is waiting for yours, their heart is willing, and they’ve got lots of it.