Mustangs | Spirit of the Shrinking West, National Geographic magazine: Inmates Train Wild Horses In Nevada Prison

An inmate rides a horse in training near tall barbed-wire fences under the watchful eye of a skilled trainer. Wild horses are gentled at the Warm Springs Correctional Center, a minimum-security prison in Nevada. Hank Curry ran the horse-training program, selecting and training over five hundred horses and only five have been returned. Horses learn from repetition and adjust to new things during the training. Curry said, “It’s about as exciting as watching paint dry. We bore them into submission.”

Similar programs exist in Colorado and Wyoming where it is believed that horses and inmates both learn life lessons involving trust. The public adopts the trained horses during auctions. Some horses that are trained by inmates are used by the U.S. Border Patrol on rugged borders in Montana, Washington and California.


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