vaquero style TRAINING

from the horses point of view

Surrounded by hundreds of miles of hilled trails and gentle rolling pastureland, RANCHO TOLEDANO PASO FINO FARM provides the perfect training ground for recreational and competitive horses. Our Northern California location in the Sierra Foothills is a haven for strengthening and training the Paso Fino.  Here they will navigate and learn through obstacles and grounds that allow them to perform to the best of their ability as your pleasure companion or your top show horse. The horses that grow in this environment are hardy and strong when they begin their training. Their endurance and stamina is increased over flatlands training and their knowledge of the environments they will meet in their life's work is greatly increased.

We encourage trail and hill work in the training of our horses. Our property borders 1000's of acres of open land in addition we have a 14,000 mile wildlife preserve within short driving distance. training clients are encouraged to practice on their own horses or our own to perfect their skills

Our horses are handled at birth and regularly during their pre-school years.  All horses are started and handled through their careers with gentle horsemanship and kindness- making their commitment to work a lifetime agreement.  Nothing is asked or pushed until the horses are capable of learning their tasks and moving forward in their work.  A calm and careful training program provides an excellent foundation for more detailed and higher layers of training.  Our expectation is that the horse that is happy and willing is going to make a TRUE life companion. A horse that is rushed will have holes in his training that will reappear later in life.  Therefore, every step we take is a lesson for a lifetime. Each day matters, each session is important and the horse that learns his lessons correctly in the beginning of his training will take new lessons and requests with ease and confidence.  . 
Over the years our program has been influenced by natural horsemanship techniques under the tutelage of  Harry Whitney, Tom and Bill Dorrance,  Ray Hunt, Mark Rashid, Cary Hardiman , Larry Whitsell, and our friend Mark Russell    All of our horses are imprinted at birth following the work of Dr. Robert Miller  Our training path takes these gentle practices to soften and strengthen our horses confidence and readiness. We wait for them to be ready.  We expect our horses to have excellent manners on the ground and to be respectful to cues under saddle.  Once we have the willingness, we  perfect the  natural gait with the methods that have been successful for years in the breed.  All of our horses are taught lateral movements and yes, all paso finos can canter!


We encourage riding lessons before you leave with your horse as well as in your growth as an owner.  A rider who develops a good seat with independent aids using seat and leg, and quiet hands will master the gaited horse easily.  Confidence building for horse and rider is an important part of our program. We offer a progression of lessons that starts with round pen work and takes you to your riding goals.  Skills for the trail are encouraged and practiced over natural obstacles and hills on the ranch.  We offer show preparation for local and regional Paso Fino shows for the novice and accomplished rider. 

Patience is the Key!