Start with the premise that Hawaii is paradise. Given that, the natural question is, “Where do Hawaiians go for vacation?” For readers not in Hawaii, the question is more interesting than if you ask Hawaiians. The most likely answer, in fact, for those who live in Hawaii is probably Las Vegas. Since we have been to Vegas… and see no reason to spend enough time to justify a time share in Sin City, we put much thought into our vacations.
Of course, we occasionally travel to places that are as far removed from the tropical warmth of our aina, Oahu. This year, we outdid ourselves.
“Do you want to know where you are going?” I asked my husband.
“Do I?” he asked with a mix of apprehension and sarcasm
“We are going to Germany.”
“We are going to Germany in February. It will be cold in Germany in February. Where in Germany will we be going?”
“Frankfurt, Berlin, Stuttgart, photographing horses in the German countryside…”
“In the snow?!”
“It’ll be beautiful, and the photos will be beautiful.”
We flew to Germany. We spent time in Berlin, but our main reason for the travel: HORSES. We flew from Berlin to Stuttgart. We drove from Stuttgart to Marbach… in the snow. And really, Marbach and the horses were amazing.
The Marbach Stud or Weil-Marbach is Germany’s oldest state horse stud farm. Marbach dates back over 500 years and is located in southwest Germany near Gomadingen in the Reutlingen district of Baden-Württemberg.
Marbach, originally significant for its development of ancestral bloodstock of several warmblood horse breeds, continues to produce the Württemberger. However, Marbach is probably best known as the home stud of the Weil-Marbach Arabians.
The majority of Arabian horses bred at Marbach are sold to private owners as personal riding horses. Some are used for endurance riding.
In addition to breeding Arabian and Württembergers, Marbach also stands stallions of the Black Forest cold blood breed as well as a few Thoroughbreds, Haflingers and other heavy wamblood stallions.
Marbach is known for producing athletic horses with good temperaments, and has careful management practices, including that of allowing young, untrained horses the opportunity to grow in a natural setting conducive to their mental as well as their physical development.
Photographing the horses of Marbach was a new challenge for this Hawaii Pet Photographer. Cold means cold fingers. Cold finger tips are a challenge when focusing the camera and pressing the shutter release. Trying to do both simultaneously while balancing a camera… and standing in a foot of snow…. NOT SOMETHING THAT ONE HAS TO DO IN HAWAII. Generally, my subjects are not taller than me. Although I have photographed horses before, these horses were curious, very curious. There is nothing like having a horse’s warm, wet breath on the back of your neck while balancing a camera and yourself on a slippery slope. Of course, there was no blowing sand, ocean spray, and photographer sweat.
I put a few images of the horses in this blog. To see more, please check out my horses gallery on my website hawaiipetphotos.com.
BTW… The photos are a bit bleached out, because the video is bleached out…