Posts made in Horses


The “Great American Horse Drive”

EPN Horse Drive & Sombrero Ranch — Craig, Colorado

I just returned from an absolutely great photography workshop trip in northwestern Colorado. The event was centered on the annual gathering and 62-mile drive of about 450 horses from their winter range home in Brown’s Park Ranch southeast of Dinosaur National Monument, to the 20,000-acre Big Gulch Ranch, west of Craig, Colorado. Big Gulch Ranch is one of the numerous ranch holdings and stables in Colorado, Wyoming and Arizona which are owned and operated by the family-owned Sombrero Ranches Company, and its herd of about 2,000 head is said to be the largest single horse herd in North America.

Somewhat more of a photo event rather than a true workshop (not a huge emphasis on instruction), this is an event organized under the banner of the Equine Photographers’ Network ( No great surprise that the focus was on horses, more horses, wranglers with some long-horns and ranch scenery thrown in.

Not having done much in the horse photography world before, I was very intrigued when I first learned of the “Great American Horse Drive”. After reading the background of the horse drive and EPN’s related workshop, my expectations were fairly high on being able to be amongst horses, real ranch hands and in an exciting photo shooting environment. And, I hoped that I might even be able to catch sight of some of the wild Mustang horses that roam the open federal lands in Northeastern Colorado and Southwestern Wyoming. But this event far exceeded even my best expectations.

Yes, the instruction was a much lesser part of the workshop than the actual field shooting, but there was still no shortage of helpful technical guidance, tutoring, discussions (topics: digital workflow, what equine clients look for, business Q&A, etc.), and even a very good critique. Scott Trees ( ,who is widely recognized as one of the preeminent equine photographers in the world, was the main professional instructor. Also providing both photographic and technical guidance were EPN’s founder, Carien Schippers (, also a highly recognized equine photographer in her own right, and Mark Kettenhofen of Nikon Professional Services who brought lots of Nikon toys for us to use and who introduced us to Nikon world of video capture.

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