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Wild horses at Cold Creek

I’ve heard stories about how there are wild horses that roam the deserts of southern Nevada, specifically around the town of Cold Creek.  I’ve seen pictures of the horses and read about them in the news, but I had to see them with my own eyes.  There are some parts of northern Nevada where there are so many of them, that the government has to step in and round them up because they reproduce quickly and have virtually no predators out in the desert.  Too many wild horses?  Could there really be wild horses just miles from my house?  I was too scared to venture out in the desert alone (not having cell phone reception kind of freaks me out!), so I asked my friend Meg Ruth if she wanted to take a road trip, and she was just as excited to set out on an adventure to find these wild horses.

Cold Creek is a really small town north of Las Vegas past Mount Charleston (if you are driving north on 95, take the next left after Lee Canyon – you’ll see a sign for Cold Creek and the prison).  In fact, I learned that the town is so remote that they don’t have electricity; they have to rely of propane and solar energy to run their houses.  The weather in Cold Creek is slightly cooler than in Vegas because of the higher elevation so I can see how they can survive out here, though there is not much vegetation around here to eat!

I was hoping that we would see at least a few wild horses, knowing that they often travel together.  When we saw our first wild horse, we were crazy excited and smiling from ear to ear.  Then we saw a whole pack of them.  Then a few more.  And even more!!!  It totally blew us away that at the end of our trip, we probably saw about 40 of these creatures!  Yes 40!!

These horses are so gentle.  I think they are quite used to humans since they hang out so close to the town of Cold Creek.

This totally reminds me of The Lion King where the animals all walk in a line, and how the newborns are sandwiched in between.

We found many of them just walking along the side the road and crossing the road.  You have to be careful because they don’t pay any attention to cars.  I think they are actually attracted to cars because many people feed them even though there are signs that say “feeding prohibited.”

They move pretty slowly.  Somehow I hate this fantasized idea in my head that they would gallop across the desert, but I think the prickly desert plants prevent them from doing that.  If you’ve ever been to Yellowstone park and seen the bison there, these horses move about the same pace as those bison.  I suppose part of the reason is that there are no predators to run away from.  Some of the horses did have scratches on them so I think sometimes they get into territorial fights with each other, or maybe fighting over the females?

I cracked up when I saw this picture.  I wasn’t trying to photograph their behind when I took this picture, but I was enthralled at their perfect pace and formation.  I didn’t know that horses do that.

These horses are beautiful!!!  I love how they stopped and posed for me.

Cold Creek is an actual creek and flows into this pond.  This place is so amazing I can’t describe it to you.  You have to make the trip yourself to really appreciate it.  It’s such a peaceful place.  You can hear the sound of the creek and see the mountains in the background.  It’s a great place to relax and unwind, and I saw several people with those outdoor chairs just taking in the scenery.  When we first pulled into this place, I literally ran out of the car to get this shot because I didn’t know how long the mother and her young would be drinking water.  Sure enough, they moved a minute later, and this is one of my favorite shots of the day.

The little foal was so shy and followed his mom everywhere.  It is so stinking cute!

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About Emily Ku Photography: Emily is a wedding photographer in Rochester, NY and Las Vegas who is passionate about shooting couples, whether it’s wedding, elopements, or engagement sessions. She also loves to travel for weddings.

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  • Tonya Damron - so happy I look your advice and went to see them!ReplyCancel

  • Andre Blais - Wow these are beautiful! Makes me wish I was there!ReplyCancel

  • Parsley Sage - So stinking cute!

    I love the white and brown one :) Want to squeeze!ReplyCancel

  • Jessica B - Yay!!! I love that you & Meg went there!! My parents bought some property up there when I was a teenager and our friends still have “cabins” up there. I have great memories of Cold Creek and it really is a lovely place!ReplyCancel

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