Last year I was doing a book signing in Loveland Colorado. At that event, I met Jenifer Morrissey a fellow author and breeder of Fell Ponies. I had fun visiting with her about her love of Fell ponies. She breeds them at her home in the Colorado Mountains. She calls her home, Willowtrail Farm. She mentioned that she became interested in Fell ponies as a way to help with her husband's logging business. It turns out that at 9,000 feet and very rocky terrain, the ponies were perfect for pulling logs off the mountain in areas that trucks could not go.
I went to the Fell pony society website to learn more about these ponies that have so captured Jenifer's heart. I learned that these ponies are some of the ancient breeds that come from the north counties of England and have probably roamed through hill and dale in that area since pre-historic times. From the iron age, onward, Fell ponies have been work animals for mankind, hauling logs, mining materials, fabric and everything else from the north to the markets in the south. The vikings (that I wrote about in one of my fantasies North Mystic) used the ponies for draft horses as well as for riding.
Since the 1950's when horses became primarily 'recreational vehicles' as I call them, the ponies have become increasingly popular for their dependability and sure footedness. That makes them great for trails on rough ground. They are also loved for driving and even jumping.
Black is the predominate color for fell ponies but they also come in brown, bay or gray. They do not exceed 14 hands in height.
If you would like to learn more about Jenifer Morrissey's breeding program, you can go to her website and see all the fun things she has to say about Fell Ponies. Click here: http://fellponiescolorado.com/html/contactus.html The pictures are from her website.
Have fun reading the award winning series: The Mist Trilogy. It's about the noble and great horses that are chosen to become unicorns when they die.