Draft Horses Still Used in Big Valley

The large heads of 2 Black Horses with harnesses.

Timmy and Jake, Half Brothers

August 22, 2006
Copyright 2006 BigValleyNews.net

So you thought draft horses were only used to haul beer wagons! One Big Valley Resident still uses draft horses, in this case Percherons (there are many other breeds of draft's) to cut hay on his property near Lookout.

Helmut Gio who lives outside Lookout has 2 Percheron draft horses which he uses to pull an old horse drawn hay cutter for harvesting. This year Helmut planted a tri grain crop which I was invited to watch as the crop was harvested. It was a nice experience being taken back about 100 years.

Helmut admits that using horse power rather than modern engine power is a lot slower and harder work, but that's not the point! He does this for the pleasure of proving to himself that it still can be done the old way. Who knows, if energy prices go much higher, Helmut may have one up on the rest of us.

Helmut Gio of Big Valley, with pitchfork in his mowed field.

Helmut Gio, of Big Valley, owner of the Percherons.

The horses pulling a small hay cutter with a man on board.

Helmut in front, with Steve Graham on the hay cutter.

The horses from the front with a hay cutter behind.

It's not as fast cutting as with gasoline or diesel, but it's fun!