Needless to say : they are our friends. They accompany us on these secluded routes, carry our staff, lead us on narrow paths, cross gorges, rivers and forests, climb slopes and summits. Like dancers, they move along the spine of the
mountains at more than 3000m high. In the evening, during the camps, they
surround us and we can admire them free in the nature in their horses life.
For more information go to the picture
The Tushins : Our horses
They are mountain horses, middle size, calm, smart and extremely skillful. They know their job at their hooves tips and know how to preserve themselves, spare their energy and make the most of it. Crossed with goats, they can climb rocks and very steep slopes.
They use to live in a herd and if not with us free in the wilderness. They are either in summer pastures in Tusheti or down in the Kakheti valley during the winter.
Foals, mares, all participate in our expeditions and form a large caravan.You will see them moving into a herd in their true horse life!
Most are passing which make them very comfortable, a significant detail especially when we are driving the horses for some days into or out of Tusheti.
Kabardin horses are unique in the Greater Caucasus chain. They have been sorted and trained for military purposes for several centuries already.
They are from Kabardino Balkaria and the Circassians (or Adyguees) people own the largest breeding.
During the Russian conquest that began in 1764 under Catherine 2, the Circassians owe their incredible resistance partly thanks to their horses. Indeed, despite their numerical inferiority, this tribe foiled the Russian strategy for 100 years until 1864.
Very well balanced, they can stand up to 80 km a day without any problem. A bit taller than the usual caucasian mountain horses and very agile, the Kabardins sneak into the canyons, gorges and narrow passages with the utmost skill, where not mountain horses would collapse.
The Kabardins have repeatedly held the title of world champion endurance race (120km).
Horses in Azerbaijan and Abkhazia
They are quite small mountain horses (evenso taller than the Takhi horses from Mongolia), rustic, enduring and skillful. They know what they have to do. You can count on them. Whether in Azerbaijan and Abkhazia, Audrey collaborates with local mountaineers who have great respect for their horses. They take care of them according to their local traditions which are sometimes different from our Western methods. All these horses live in freedom and have a fulfilling life.
Doghi are horse races that are originally a pagan funeral ritual. Today they can be commemorative races, competitions and / or games.