Craig Cameron - Ride Smart Clinic in Ontario
|Craig and his assistant Stewart|
"You can't ride outside 'cause you guys have 80 feet of snow here.", jokes Craig Cameron, as he's giving advice during the last question and answer period on Sunday. He repeatedly reinforces the idea of focusing on and improving horsemanship fundamentals. He can't stress it enough, he says. I'm the one thawing out with a bowl of chilli and taking photos.
Being a dedicated learner myself and veteran observer of all things Road to The Horse, I ventured over to see what Craig Cameron was like giving a clinic. I'd been there last year to see an extreme cowboy clinic and thought it would be interesting to see Craig in action. I've seen him on webcasts of the Road to the Horse competition (RTTH) where he was the 2010 champion and co-team USA member with Pat Parelli in 2012. (Jonathan Fields is representing Canada in this year's 2014 competition, March 13-16th.)
|Participants working on water|
Craig Cameron's assistant Stewart is seen in the photo helping a participant with the water hazard. (photos of competition courtesy: Roxanne Lashbrook). Craig's Clinic in Clinton is a 3-day Ride Smart horsemanship and extreme cowboy clinic with an Ultimate Cowboy Challenge show on the Sat. night (hosted by REACH). 14 riders tried to ignore the cold as they learned Craig's version of horsemanship doing exercises like riding squares for steering, riding zig-zag patterns, and rollbacks using the wall.
|Competitor lining up to do the flower power obstacle|
Craig Cameron from Bluff Dale, Texas runs his Craig Cameron University from his Double Horn ranch where riders learn about horses, and horsemanship - Craig believing that these lessons will serve someone into every aspect of their life. His RFD-TV show and book called Ride Smart by Western Horseman is how he got the name of his style of horsemanship. He's been demonstrating his philosophy for over 23 years.
With regards to horsemanship, Craig states: "The tradition of horsemanship and its way of life is about an individual’s work and the horse being a reflection of that individual. The horse is only as good as the trainer and seeks the level of the rider, be it good or bad. The best cowboys accept the challenge of horsemanship and rise to the occasion. Doing things right is not always the easy trail, but just like the old times it is the tough trail that teaches us the most."
About his clinics: "Clinic topics range from basic to advanced horsemanship, colt starting, ranch and cattle work, problem-solving, reining and trail obstacles."
|Competitor setting up to do water hazard obstacle Saturday night|
|Horse competitor showing new way to maneuver car wash obstacle|
Putting another spin on horsemanship.