Mare Profile: War Bonnet

This post comes with the disclaimer that I don’t know much about War Bonnet’s early history. This will probably be a short post. I don’t anticipate it varying much from Phoenix’s post, which can be found here.

Born in 1993 War Bonnet is the daughter of Tonopah, and Geranimo. Tonopah shared lead mare duties with Madonna for Duke for a large portion of her life, before spending her last few years with He Who’s group. Geranimo’s name sounds really familiar, so I’d like to think he was a powerful stallion in his time, but I can’t quite place him. Since I don’t know as much about Tonopah as I’d like, I’m not sure if War Bonnet grew up in Geranimo’s band, or with a different stallion. Maybe someday I’ll research Tonopah, and provide more information, but for now I’ll just focus on War Bonnet’s adult life.

I’m not sure when she was with Lakota, or for how long, but when I first saw War Bonnet in 2011, she was with Diamond (Teton). By then, she and Phoenix were bonded, and shared lead mare duties. War Bonnet had her daughter Kayenta with her then, so she seemed more interested in the younger horses in the band, than giving direction to the band.

Diamond's band. (June, 2011)

Diamond’s band. (June, 2011)

The band naps together. (June, 2011)

The band naps together. (June, 2011)

Both Phoenix, and War Bonnet are in the front to lead the band.

Both Phoenix, and War Bonnet are in the front to lead the band.

By 2013, the band hadn’t changed too much. Kiowa, and Kayenta were removed, but Half Moon had Missoula in 2012. Diamond’s band spent a lot of time by Cloud’s band. Cloud, and Diamond spent time sparring with one another. The yearlings Missoula, and Mato Ska (Mica) spent time playing.

War Bonnet (May, 2013)

War Bonnet (May, 2013)

It seemed like a pretty good situation, but both stallions were getting older. Eventually* the band got stolen by Hernando. Half Moon and Missoula ended up in Mescalero’s band, but I’m convinced War Bonnet and Phoenix will be besties for life.

When Maelstrom, and Niobrara got separated from Firestorm when Doc stole Jackson’s band, Phoenix, and War Bonnet took them in. Reports are, War Bonnet especially doted on the youngest members of the band. Although Maelstrom later became a bachelor, and Niobrara is now with Hamlet’s band, it still reflected well on Hernando that he let the two young horses stay with the band.

Hernando, and War Bonnet graze near each other. (June, 2016)

Hernando, and War Bonnet graze near each other. (June, 2016)

When I saw War Bonnet in June 2016, she seemed the most content I’d ever seen her. In Diamond’s band it seemed like they spent a lot of time on the move. With Hernando War Bonnet seemed content to rest and graze. Respectfully, Hernando made a flehmen response in War Bonnet’s direction, but mutually groomed Phoenix rather than move to woo War Bonnet. Later, the two mares moved off with a burst of speed that helps them maintain the idea that they are “ageless”.

Hernando's band. (June, 2016)

Hernando’s band. (June, 2016)

Phoenix, and War Bonnet will be 24, and 25 this year respectively. I have to wonder if it’s been fun for them to be with a 10-year-old stallion. I’d like to think they can still maintain their ageless qualities for a few more years. At the very least, I would like to see a younger mare or two join the band before War Bonnet, and Phoenix eventually move on. Until then, I think it’s safe to say Hernando is learning from two of the strongest lead mares on the mountain.

*More exact dates are in the Phoenix post.

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