Ft Concho Cavalry- The early years

Right after I enrolled with the Ft Concho Cavalry, I attended the Labor Day event in Ft Davis. Russell, my oldest son, was with me. His horse’s name was Tanneria. She was a buckskin. He rode her very well. On this particular trip, one particular event took place that comes to my mind. Ft Davis is an Indian Wars Fort. The scenic fort is surrounded by mountains that look down on the fort. These mountains are pretty tall, at least by West Texas standards. If you ride down a canyon behind the fort, there is a trail that circles into the mountains, up to the top overlooking the fort and down the opposite side. Going up is rocky but very manageable, either on foot or horseback. Going across the top, you will encounter large boulders that have to be negotiated, sometimes barely able to go between the large boulders. Coming down the other side is another matter. This supports large rocks that can be very slippery at best.

Over the years, I’ve ridden this trail probably half a dozen times on different horses. It was always a challenge to me mentally. I’ve always found that if you give your horse his head, he/she was make it ok.

However, on this first trip, I didn’t ride the entire trail but went up on the opposite side. I was with the cavalry unit as a private. Russel was with me. Shawn Pascuzzie was the First Sargent, unit comannder at the time. As the unit was trying to climb up, it became clear that it was going to be tough. Some horses just don’t take to slick rocks. Tanneria was one such horse. Russell was ahead of me. I was at the rear of the unit for the most part. I noticed Tannerial started to slip and fall back. God had his hand on both Russell and Tanneria as they both came out of this ordeal without any injury. The unit decided they had went far enough and turned around. Shawn sure caught the wrath of John Vaughn. John was the First director that rode or drove mules. It was a good time of precious memories that I will always cherish.

Ft Davis is one of the most majestic forts to visit, especially if you are around a campfire. You really get the feel of the past. It just doesn’t get any better than this, especially if you have your horses along.

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