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Old 03-04-2014, 01:30 AM   #11
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Default Re: Wrangling horses, driving herds, remudas

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Originally Posted by Dalillama View Post
The short answer is yes and no, respectively. I can only find references to horses being ridden distances like this, never driven, so take that as you will, but one article notes that horses can lose abound 10% of their bodyweight over the course of the race (mostly fluids), and there are detailed aftercare directions that will occupy at least another several hours of someone's time, and that's just for horses that haven't started displaying obvious problems after the race, which many will. Secondhand knowledge from people I've known who've ridden less strenuous competitions indicates that you want a day or two of light duty after even a much smaller run.
Indeed, I realise that being ridden for that distance will take a great deal out of a horse.

On the other hand, if running unencumbranced expends only 1/3rd to half the FP per hour for the horse as running with a rider at Medium encumbrance, as it does under GURPS rules for a human, that would mean that 20 miles with a rider and 60 miles without one are only equivalent to a 40-50 mile ride with a rider, in terms of fatiguing the horse.

If that's true, then it becomes possible to get to Zindalankh, for example, on the evening of the third day since the mounts are stolen, without pushing them inhumanly hard. On the first day, the horses would have to run 80 miles, but it would be possible to water and feed them well with oats at two points along that route and all of it would be covered in lush grass.

Those horses who weren't in shape to run further the next day could get at least a half-day's rest around Somraggah, only moving as far forward as would be necessary to graze out all grass around it.

From Somraggah, it's 60 miles to Wakirnayskul and 60 miles from Wakirnayskul to Zindalankh.

I'm guessing Somraggah will be the first collection point for stragglers and Wakirnayskul and Zindalankh will serve the same purpose. The animals that arrive at Zindalankh after three days of running without falling out will have some one or two days of rest there while the stragglers and the column of running hobgoblin infantry catch up with them.

As following them into the Emir's lands will pose political complications for the Bey, for all that Emir is supposed to be his loyal subordinate, the PCs are hoping for a delay in the pursuit for a few days while the politics get sorted out. The Emir will promise all the dispatch possible, sending his own men after these vile blackguards and horse thieves, all the while obstructing useful pursuit and accepting a gift of at least a thousand horses.*

*Depending on how well the PCs manage to negotiate with him.
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Old 03-04-2014, 01:59 AM   #12
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Default Re: Wrangling horses, driving herds, remudas

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They could do it 3-4 days, sure, but you will lose a % of the weaker horses. Some will get a stone bruises on the hoof, or come up lame for any number of reasons. Roll HT and lose X number any time you beyond their normal range, and increase that likelihood with extended movement. The limiting factor is how many you want to lose. The top % will stay with you for incredible distances.
Hmmm....

A loss of 10% of mostly the weakest animals wouldn't be disastrous at all, as the most important part of the herd are the 25% of the best horses, the ones who are potential endurance racing champions or, in other words, extremely fine quality scouting and outriding cavalry mounts.

Basically, any horse that wouldn't make a prime cavalry service mount isn't one that it is important to steal at that particular time.

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That's a huge herd, and would need equally large amounts of grass and water. Those coming after it will be in big trouble, just from the grass the animals will consume.
The hugeness of the number of animals is the reason they are being driven along riverbanks and in wet country, during the part of year while the grasses are the most lush.

Even so, it's an interesting point that any pursuers will be riding over grasslands eaten bare, as well as the organisational skills of the PCs can manage. They'll probably divide into several columns and leave a decent route of uneaten grass for a column or two of stragglers, but for pursuers behind those, they'll leave no choice but to leave the route with the good watering holes in order to find uneaten grass.

If it forces pursuers to have to send for a supply column of oats and carried water, that's a nice bonus. Even if it only forces them to waste some extra time per day in finding grazing, it still means that the pursuing cavalry won't catch up as easily as I had imaginated.

I had thought that a thousand horses could easily catch ten thousand, going by analogy with marching armies, where adding numbers adds the time it takes to get anywhere. But maybe I was too pessimistic, as a thousand ridden horses that will be going over already grazed trails eaten dry by ten thousand horses might not make such good time.

It all depends on whether 10-20 horses per man slows the larger group of horses down, because they have to be constantly driving them back to the group and stopping to take care of them, or it speeds them up, because it means an effectively endless stream of remounts, meaning that most of the horses are without any encumbrance for the vast majority of the day's travel.

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There will always be sick horses, as horses are notoriously likely to get sick at the most inconvenient moment!
Given 10,000 horses, even if they've all recently been passed as fit for cavalry service (and the ones with any signs of sickness, lameness, weakness or flaws sent back as unsuitable tribute), I expect the occasional malady will pop up.

But my WAG, based on nothing more than the expectation that the experts who certified the animals ready for a 2,000 mile long drive knew what they were about, is that this will be a rare occurance. Basically, it's a combination of a HT 12-13 horse failing a HT check and a skill 14-16 expert failing to see the signs of it during the passing process.

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It depends on what you are testing. Are you testing the management of a remuda, or the management of an overland journey for a caravan? Those aren't the same thing.
But while you could probably manage a 100 horses over a known trail without having much in the way of Administration or Navigation, you probably can't even begin to manage more than a thousand men taking care of ten thousand horses with only Animal Handling.

The best horse wrangler in the world isn't necessarily going to know how to command a thousand other wranglers, organise an extremely complex system of watches, feedings, waterings, routes and collection points or be able to stymie and outguess pursuers by denying them forage along the route.

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Whatever happens, the Animal Handling will be the determining factor for making it to the end with the horses in good shape.
Yes, but can the Animal Handling skill of one overall commander really make all the difference, or is it more important how much skill each individual wrangler has?

And how many horses can each one reasonably take care off without suffering penalties to Animal Handling?

For example, with these ten thousand horses, how many of the 1,200 men with them are truly necessary as full-time wranglers for the remuda and how many of them can serve as outriding cavalry, only coming back to the main herd (or likely one of several columns of it) to change horses?

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If you are worrying about them knowing the route, keeping force cohesion, or forgetting important details, of course that's not anything to do with Animal Handling per se. I'd roll the other skills as complimentary rolls on the final Animal Handling skill roll, if you were worried about them.
I'll do something similar. I'll make succeeding on all the organisational and navigational skills a prerequisite for the final skill roll, because otherwise, a lot of the animals won't have competent wranglers assigned to them.
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Old 03-04-2014, 11:23 AM   #13
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Default Re: Wrangling horses, driving herds, remudas

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And how many horses can each one reasonably take care off without suffering penalties to Animal Handling?
http://books.google.com/books?id=T55...0drive&f=false

FWIW, the link says 250-400 per cowboy, with the largest herd driven to be around 15,000 cattle. The daily mileage is much slower, of course, but that's a limit on the speed of cattle and keeping them in shape for the market.
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Old 03-04-2014, 12:51 PM   #14
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Default Re: Wrangling horses, driving herds, remudas

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http://books.google.com/books?id=T55...0drive&f=false

FWIW, the link says 250-400 per cowboy, with the largest herd driven to be around 15,000 cattle. The daily mileage is much slower, of course, but that's a limit on the speed of cattle and keeping them in shape for the market.
Intuitively, it seems that spirited warhorses and hunting horses suitable for war training might be considerably less docile than cows. Also, keeping horses from getting separated while running 80 miles seems like it would demand more attention to each horse than keeping together a herd of slow-moving cattle while moving at speeds of less than a quarter of that.

Pessimistically, I was thinking that up to ten people with Animal Handling 12+ might be needed per 100 horses that are being driven in a running group. Optimistically, I had considered that the PCs might, given very successful organisational rolls, get away with leaving only 200 wranglers with the remuda herd* of 10,000 horse (less the mounts for the ones away as cavalry).

Going by the single source I found that mentioned numbers of horses and wranglers on long drives, I thought it was unlikely that driving 50+ horses per man was an unmodified Animal Handling roll.

Granted, a dozen men are noted as driving 1,100 head and 40 men drive 3,000, but those are mentioned as feats that were recorded, noticed and admired. That's probably an example of a successful roll at a penalty. And the desire to roughly double the travel times from the examples above** will probably call for fewer animals per wrangler, if only because parts of the way the animals will be running.

Also, loss rates are rarely mentioned, but in many cases, the drivers pick up replacements from wild horses en route, which is not a possibility for my PC horse thieves. They'll want to assign enough wranglers so that animals that run out of the herd can be caught without opening up an opportunity for others to stray.

*Actually, more likely to be three to twelve groups of wranglers and horses going slightly different routes, but I digress.
**Granted, 40 miles per day over thousands of miles which include the Mojave Desert and the Jornada del Muerto is considerably more impressive than 80 miles per day over 200 miles of perfect country followed by 50 miles per day over 150 miles of desert outskirts, good desert roads with oases and only a 50 mile stretch of truly dry desert without oases and springs.
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Old 03-04-2014, 03:52 PM   #15
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Default Re: Wrangling horses, driving herds, remudas

[QUOTE=Icelander;1733101]
Quote:
Intuitively, it seems that spirited warhorses and hunting horses suitable for war training might be considerably less docile than cows.
If by warhorse you mean "stock suitable for war training," then probably not. Mustangs were used by the US Army for decades. They are more docile than the rangy and ornery long horns! If you mean fully war-trained animals suitable for attacking humans on the battlefield, I'm unaware of any situation in which historically they were kept as herd animals. Part of the breeding of warhorses necessarily required keeping them far away from herd behavior. They were kept as champion horses are today -- in separate stalls, feed by hand, and generally were all males bred for aggressiveness. I suspect that the likelihood of pushing a herd of competitive alpha males trained to bite and kick would be quite small!

Quote:
Also, keeping horses from getting separated while running 80 miles seems like it would demand more attention to each horse than keeping together a herd of slow-moving cattle while moving at speeds of less than a quarter of that.
Perhaps, but recall the herd sense of these animals is very strong. They will follow a lead horse they trust and stay together at almost any cost. Warhorses, having the natural timidity of a herd animal bred out of them, are a totally different story. Cavalry horses (trained to smell blood with panic and tolerate the sounds of battle) probably fall much closer to natural instinct than true battle-trained horses.

Quote:
They'll want to assign enough wranglers so that animals that run out of the herd can be caught without opening up an opportunity for others to stray.
This will not be possible. The group will need to average 4 MPH most of the day (probably a little faster than this, and resting at watering holes for 30 minutes now and then, with one long halt in the heat of the day for a little sleep for the horsemen; historically a lot of the hard driving was done at night in desert areas, with rest in the afternoon), which means a bolting horse will probably never catch up. More likely a group of men will ride a second perimeter on the outer edge of the herd and try to turn back any strays, while another group will ride behind the group and try to round up the strays as they go along. This may be where your extra hands are needed.

Quote:
Actually, more likely to be three to twelve groups of wranglers and horses going slightly different routes, but I digress.
This would probably allow you to move faster and make being caught a lot harder!

Quote:
Granted, 40 miles per day over thousands of miles which include the Mojave Desert and the Jornada del Muerto is considerably more impressive than 80 miles per day over 200 miles of perfect country
The US Cavalry could routinely make pretty epic distances in very inhospitable terrain, but they also averaged losing 1 remount a month per trooper while on campaign. This is sometimes attributed to combat losses, but often it was simply exhaustion from heat or poor, nutrition, saddle sores, broken or split hooves, colic, etc.
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Old 03-05-2014, 09:51 AM   #16
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Default Re: Wrangling horses, driving herds, remudas

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If by warhorse you mean "stock suitable for war training," then probably not. Mustangs were used by the US Army for decades. They are more docile than the rangy and ornery long horns!
I suppose that's reasonable.

On the other hand, catching a bolting group of cattle requires less speed than catching a spirited hunter with Move 8 (Enhanced Move 16) if he decides he disagrees with the route being taken.

And from my limited experience of horses and cows, horses are a lot more curious, mobile and prone to panic than the stodgy cows. Of course, longhorns may be considerably more active than our European cows, which are the very picture of docility.

If cattle stampede, it is indeed a very terrible thing and hard to stop. But it generally takes quite a bit to get the kind of cows that I've seen to even notice you, whereas horses shy away at nearly anything. So minor distractions that cattle don't notice might serve to scatter horses, which, with their much greater move and endurance, might mean quite a job rounding them up.

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If you mean fully war-trained animals suitable for attacking humans on the battlefield, I'm unaware of any situation in which historically they were kept as herd animals. Part of the breeding of warhorses necessarily required keeping them far away from herd behavior. They were kept as champion horses are today -- in separate stalls, feed by hand, and generally were all males bred for aggressiveness. I suspect that the likelihood of pushing a herd of competitive alpha males trained to bite and kick would be quite small!
None of the mounts being stolen are actually trained to bite and kick. The vast majority of them are mares and some proportion are geldings. In general, there are no stallions, because those are strategic assets and not given as part of the regular tribute of horses. So, any alpha males present will mostly be gelded alpha males, to prevent foreigners from being able to breed purebred specimens of the highly-sought after Raurin or Semphari horses. Also, it doesn't suit the local way of war to have the horse itself be too aggressive, so even the less exclusive Rauthen breeds tend to have the males gelded, except for ones selected as breeding stallions.

The culture in question might be compared to Arabic-esque or Persian-ised steppe peoples. Think Bokhara and Tajiks, Uzbeks and suchlike. As such, most war mounts are mares and war horses are not expected to bite or kick in combat, but instead carry the rider past the enemy while he shoots arrows, throws javelins or spears him with a light lance.

The horses are between 3-6 years of age, mostly, with a majority being age 4-5.* The weights range from around 700 lbs., small hunters that might be compared to jennets or hobbies, up to coursers of around 1,100 lbs. Those coursers are expected to carry armoured cavalrymen into combat, but they are not expected to actually bite or kick themselves. Riding over foes is done, though, but these horses are mostly only halfway through their war training and shock cavalry training hasn't started.

In general, the training levels of the horses are fairly high, but only as hunting horses, outriders and all-purpose riding animals. They only have 2-6 months of training as cavalry mounts in formation by the Bey's men as part of being rounded up for the tribute to his suzerain. A good quarter of them had been fully trained as light cavalry mounts by their former owners, though, but that generally doesn't include shock tactics or riding over foes.

There are, however, some exceptions. One hundred young stallions of the Raurin breed, all of them big and strong, not to mention spirited and aggressive in comparison with the baseline for their breed, were being paid as part of this tribute (which was one of the things that infuriated the nobles enough that the PCs were able to subvert many of the guards and trainers to steal the horses instead).

Those were assigned expert trainers and cavalrymen to train them as shock cavalry. That training is not finished, but the goal was to use them as true warhorses. They are fully trained as riding horses and even as cavalry horses, but they do not yet kick and bite at command (nor is that what they were specifically bred for). Those are horses chosen as likely to be able to do so, however, so they are very aggressive compared to the usual run of light cavalry horses.

Those horses were kept separately, where the cavalry was housed, with one older trainer and one apprentice horse trainer assigned to every two horses. The presence of all these mares somewhat complicates having them around the other horses, especially as the mares are intended for combat service and not for breeding (there are brood mares located where the stallions were headed).

There are also around fifty stallions owned by noblemen or bandit chiefs (which are very often the same men) who may kick and bite in combat. Those are not part of any herd, however, but are the battle mounts of their owners, who are stealing the herd.

*There are older horses there, but only as personal mounts of the trainers or cavalrymen who were stationed there. The raiders led by the PCs also have mounts who may be older, especially the war trained horses that the experienced warriors are riding.

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Perhaps, but recall the herd sense of these animals is very strong. They will follow a lead horse they trust and stay together at almost any cost. Warhorses, having the natural timidity of a herd animal bred out of them, are a totally different story. Cavalry horses (trained to smell blood with panic and tolerate the sounds of battle) probably fall much closer to natural instinct than true battle-trained horses.
Those are warhorses for their culture, but not horses trained or expected to bite and kick in battle.

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This will not be possible. The group will need to average 4 MPH most of the day (probably a little faster than this, and resting at watering holes for 30 minutes now and then, with one long halt in the heat of the day for a little sleep for the horsemen; historically a lot of the hard driving was done at night in desert areas, with rest in the afternoon), which means a bolting horse will probably never catch up. More likely a group of men will ride a second perimeter on the outer edge of the herd and try to turn back any strays, while another group will ride behind the group and try to round up the strays as they go along. This may be where your extra hands are needed.
Sounds good.

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This would probably allow you to move faster and make being caught a lot harder!
I imagine so.

Four main columns of horses, each with twenty outriders in front and a group of twenty following to round up stragglers. With the main body of 2,500 horses for each column, one hundred wranglers, some of whom are riding some distance from the column and assigned to prevent animals from bolting too far away.

That's 560 men needed in total. Then we can assign some four groups of ten each to rounding up strays behind the main columns, bringing the total to 600.

Then we've got 400-500 men who can each take three good horses and function as cavalry to deter pursuit or attack by the locals. After they've scattered the Bey's men on the second or third day, at least two hundred of them can then form a colum of any strays that have been rounded up and ride close to the routes taken by the four columns, also rounding up on the way any animals that were left to rest an extra day by the ones in front.

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Originally Posted by safisher View Post
The US Cavalry could routinely make pretty epic distances in very inhospitable terrain, but they also averaged losing 1 remount a month per trooper while on campaign. This is sometimes attributed to combat losses, but often it was simply exhaustion from heat or poor, nutrition, saddle sores, broken or split hooves, colic, etc.
The ca 40 miles per day was the speed of the last ca 1,730 miles of a horse drive with an unknown (or at least not cited) number of horses reckoned suitable for cavalry service, made over some 4,000+ miles of praire and desert. Actually, it was only 32 miles per day, as it took 54 days to cover the distance between Sacramento and Independence, Missouri.

The horses arrived gaunt, but a point is made of them having survived (and indeed the story is told because it emphases the skill of the wranglers in getting the horses through alive), so while the loss numbers aren't mentioned, one may infer that the majority did survive. Depending on how one is to interpret the comment that they 'were by now well broke to travel and gave little trouble along the way', one could even imagine that most or all of them made it.
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Old 03-06-2014, 12:33 PM   #17
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Default Number of remounts a cavalryman can manage on patrol

Another, related question is how many remounts an outrider can lead along with him as he travels without slowing down or requiring Animal Handling at more than skill+4 to avoid losing them?

And what kind of rolls do Mongols with twelve remounts need to make during their daily travel?

I imagine that riding one horse and leading two by the reins is fairly uncomplicated, with some hassles arising from time to time, but the convenience of being able to switch to fresher horses at need easily outweighing it.

But at what point do extra remounts to lead along stop being a benefit, in that you have to spend less time on each individual mount, and start being a hindrance, in that taking care of them slows your travel time or at least fatigues you personally enough so that you are not prepared to do your job once you arrive at your destination at the end of the frenzied gallop with a string of horses?

To take a concrete example, the PCs have more good horses than they have riders to serve as cavalry. How many horses should they assign each of the 100 horse archers selected to serve as outriders and cavalry screen?
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Old 03-06-2014, 04:25 PM   #18
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Default Re: Number of remounts a cavalryman can manage on patrol

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And what kind of rolls do Mongols with twelve remounts need to make during their daily travel?
I suspect they are herding them, not leading them. It's easier to use their herd instincts than to lead a bunch of horses. Horses will naturally move together, work together. Certainly the US cavalry moved small herds, rather than lead a large number per rider.

Quote:
How many horses should they assign each of the 100 horse archers selected to serve as outriders and cavalry screen?
They will simply rotate in, pick a new horse, saddle him, and go back to station. If you watch this video you'll see a very bad go of capturing a horse -- but the rider is not that important. Watch the _horse_ he is riding. It's doing all the work, eager to follow the one it's chasing, without much prompting from the rider. That's the instinct to follow. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xo0c4iFqVik

Or watch the instinct to herd of this champion cutting horse. The rider does little except hang on -- the horse "cuts" the calf from the herd, and keeps him cut out until the rider lets him know it's okay to let the calf return. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nCRzUjn4I7I

The horsemen uses the horse's instincts to his advantage, picking the horse he wants to ride from the herd, cutting it out, roping it, and saddling it. Not a big problem, generally.

On a different note, the ability to manage your horse with only the slightest control inputs -- to extend and collect the gate, to spin rapidly, stay balanced and quick to react, etc. -- can be seen here (forgive the audio on both): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zKQgTiqhPbw and the beginning display here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EaozG0-SUwc

Notice the hands are free to manage a shield, lance, sword, etc. It's not presented that way, but this is the vestiges of war training, and it's quite within the realm of what horses do naturally. It marshals their protective instincts -- to tuck in the head, hold the body flexed, and to whirl away from danger. Horsemen once used the instincts of the horse, particularly his sheer joy in running, and his natural athleticism, on the battlefield. It seems very unnatural, but it's really only a harnessing of the animal.

Here's a great view of the horse as a partner. Watch this horse's ears. Forward ears show attentiveness, alertness. Backed ears show pain, anger, or frustration. Here they show a keen interest -- this horse is having a blast negotiating the obstacles. It even neighs at the end, as if to say "That was fun!" Instinct! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4PXL9N9WU8E

The quality horse has its mind in the game. It plays well with others, wants to be ridden, it enjoys its "job." It's not just excellent physicality that good breeding produces, but a good temperament, a spirit well suited to the task. Horses will kill themselves if they enjoy doing what they love. Watch this barrel horse at 1:30. It's quivering with excitement. Let's go! Let's go! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l8Ki2sUpIrA
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Old 03-06-2014, 06:28 PM   #19
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Default Re: Number of remounts a cavalryman can manage on patrol

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I suspect they are herding them, not leading them. It's easier to use their herd instincts than to lead a bunch of horses. Horses will naturally move together, work together. Certainly the US cavalry moved small herds, rather than lead a large number per rider.
Probably right. On the other hand, at some small number of extra horses, leading them is done.

I'm looking for guidelines on a good balance between having enough extra mounts to be able to perform prodigious feats of cavalry screening, but not enough so that the outriders have to have their own caravan, with all the problems of predictability, restricted routes and having to spend the time wrangling horses instead of riding screening patrols that implies.

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They will simply rotate in, pick a new horse, saddle him, and go back to station.
The goal for these particular skirmishing cavalry outriders, as opposed to the outriders of each column (who will indeed do as you describe), is to move away from the four columns and only rejoin them in a few days, depending on the breaks.

They'll stay behind in a town to send out patrols in small groups to deny the opposition intelligence during the first day, while the rest of the horses and men start moving away (less the ones detailed to wait for stragglers or round up strays). On the second day, they'll screen a bigger force of cavalry and hopefully allow them to flank a pursuing force in a planned battle to cover the retreat.

During the third day they'll start their own movement toward the eventual goal, but they'll be going the longest route of any of the PCs' force, serving to screen the entire force from an enemy coming down from the north-west road (or trails leading from that direction).

All in all, between patrolling, participating in a battle and drawing off pursuit and blocking enemy scouts from getting too close to the main force, the more miles they can ride in four days, the better. During the first day and part of the second, they can leave spare mounts behind in a safe location with a small holding force, but after the battle, they'll be engaged in a race to catch up to friendlies by a long, sweeping route, all the while trying to keep unfriendly scouts away from them.

So they'll have a hard time managing a herd while having to be ready to skirmish at any point. But it's entirely out of the question that they'll do all this work on one horse.

They'll get anywhere from two to six horses each. I had planned to give them three mounts each, like the larger cavalry group which also serves in the battle and will then take a slightly shorter route to catch up with the main force, but in light of the fact that they are expected to skirmish the day before and then ride a longer route the day after, I suspect they'll need the ability to change horses even more.

At what point do you think extra horses will slow them down or weaken them as a combat unit? Beyond two? Beyond three?

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Originally Posted by safisher View Post
If you watch this video you'll see a very bad go of capturing a horse -- but the rider is not that important. Watch the _horse_ he is riding. It's doing all the work, eager to follow the one it's chasing, without much prompting from the rider. That's the instinct to follow. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xo0c4iFqVik

Or watch the instinct to herd of this champion cutting horse. The rider does little except hang on -- the horse "cuts" the calf from the herd, and keeps him cut out until the rider lets him know it's okay to let the calf return. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nCRzUjn4I7I

The horsemen uses the horse's instincts to his advantage, picking the horse he wants to ride from the herd, cutting it out, roping it, and saddling it. Not a big problem, generally.
I expect that the horses ridden by the trainers that were managing the horses before will be experienced cutting horses. It's only a small fraction of the total number, but it will help, no doubt. And horses owned by long-time raiders and horse thieves will also have instincts and experiences useful for cutting out horses and catching bolting ones.

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Originally Posted by safisher View Post
On a different note, the ability to manage your horse with only the slightest control inputs -- to extend and collect the gate, to spin rapidly, stay balanced and quick to react, etc. -- can be seen here (forgive the audio on both): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zKQgTiqhPbw and the beginning display here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EaozG0-SUwc

Notice the hands are free to manage a shield, lance, sword, etc. It's not presented that way, but this is the vestiges of war training, and it's quite within the realm of what horses do naturally. It marshals their protective instincts -- to tuck in the head, hold the body flexed, and to whirl away from danger. Horsemen once used the instincts of the horse, particularly his sheer joy in running, and his natural athleticism, on the battlefield. It seems very unnatural, but it's really only a harnessing of the animal.
Will it take long to train horses that are fully trained as hunting horses, endurance racers or working horses for herding to function as cavalry horses? Assuming that many of them will have been used in small skirmishes between tribes as well, much like Plains Indian or Mongol horses.

Mostly, that would be teaching them formations. Is that a long process?

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Originally Posted by safisher View Post
Here's a great view of the horse as a partner. Watch this horse's ears. Forward ears show attentiveness, alertness. Backed ears show pain, anger, or frustration. Here they show a keen interest -- this horse is having a blast negotiating the obstacles. It even neighs at the end, as if to say "That was fun!" Instinct! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4PXL9N9WU8E

The quality horse has its mind in the game. It plays well with others, wants to be ridden, it enjoys its "job." It's not just excellent physicality that good breeding produces, but a good temperament, a spirit well suited to the task. Horses will kill themselves if they enjoy doing what they love. Watch this barrel horse at 1:30. It's quivering with excitement. Let's go! Let's go! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l8Ki2sUpIrA
The fictional horse breeds being stolen in my example are noted for spirit and liveliness. Most of them will have been used for hunting, races, jumping contests and other forms of competative play by their owners before being collected as tribute, as those are the major form of entertainment among the free population of the area.

Households without horses are not accounted among citizens with rights to vote on the tribal leaders and owning a champion racehorse or jumper is a source of pride beyond any other form of wealth. Horsemanship is more important than intelligence, skill at arms or even courage, in determining the worth of a man.
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Old 03-08-2014, 10:20 AM   #20
safisher
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Default Re: Number of remounts a cavalryman can manage on patrol

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Originally Posted by Icelander View Post
Probably right. On the other hand, at some small number of extra horses, leading them is done.
Yes, I know. Eight to ten horses might be a good limit without penalty.

"Next, by prior arrangement, the president rode horseback 65 miles from Laramie to Cheyenne. Changing mounts three times, for a total of four horses ridden, Roosevelt was accompanied by 10 prominent citizens, including Sen. Francis E. Warren, U.S. Marshal Frank Hadsell, Deputy U.S. Marshal Joe LeFors, Albany County Sheriff N.K. Boswell of Laramie, local stockman R. S. Van Tassell, and Black Hills Forest Reserve Supervisor and former Deadwood, S. D. lawman Seth Bullock...The party ate lunch at the Van Tassell ranch and arrived in Cheyenne at 4:00 p.m. A lengthy procession and parade brought Roosevelt to a speaker's stand at 15th and Ferguson (now Carey Avenue). At 7:00 p.m., he spoke to a crowd of approximately 10,000."
See more at: http://www.wyohistory.org/encycloped....yBOsnr61.dpuf


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At what point do you think extra horses will slow them down or weaken them as a combat unit? Beyond two? Beyond three?
They'll probably have a few horse holders riding with them, holding the strings for 2-3 riders.

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Will it take long to train horses that are fully trained as hunting horses, endurance racers or working horses for herding to function as cavalry horses? Assuming that many of them will have been used in small skirmishes between tribes as well, much like Plains Indian or Mongol horses.
Probably a month or two. Assuming they are well bred and experienced horses.
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