Weekly Gem #188 These Iron Horses are a Great View

Published 3/17/2019

Location: The last of our “railroad” theme, this hidden gem is located just west of Hwy 287, north of Three Forks, MT (see the Clue Me! Map).  Well, one look at the photo, and I guess the secret is out. The railroad theme ended last week. Perhaps we’ve been derailed by excessive word play.

To get back on track … These 39 iron horses are sculptures, arranged to create a piece of art. Art that not only provides a great view, but that also has a great view.

Let’s start with the art. The horses are welded into shapes and poses that give a sense of realism. They reside on a hill in a large pasture, pretty close to the “boonies” in Montana, near the highway but not too close. Just the setting where they belong.

Trust me when I tell you, the first time people drive past this sculpture, they think it’s a real herd of horses. They may drive by some days or weeks later and see them again, coincidentally in more or less the same place. About the third time, they look closely and realize they’ve had a great view of highly realistic art.

This works because of the imagination and capabilities of the artist, Jim Dolan. Each individual horse has its own personality, postures that are horse-like, but each different. They also behave like a herd of horses, not 39 individuals. Some are looking at or nuzzling each other, some looking into the distance, some lying down, at least one foal is nursing. Some are eating, some are resting. The herd is scattered and interacting as horses do, some in small groups, some individuals. This sculpture was made by a person who knew something about horses.

And of course, it’s not every piece of art that has such a great view. Several members of the herd are looking to the south, where they see the nearby rolling hills, and then the Tobacco Root mountain peaks in the distance. Perhaps they're thinking it's about time to make tracks, and explore that high country.


Here's the hidden gem entry from our Clue Me! map.


I call horses "divine mirrors" - they reflect back the emotions you put in. If you put in love, and respect, and kindness and curiosity, the horse will return that. ~~ Allan Hamilton


"Bleu Horses" by sculptor Jim Dolan

Why It's Interesting

"Bleu Horses," on the side of a hill can be seen from Highway 287. At first they might look like real horses with their tails blowing in the wind. They are actually made of metal. The tails are made of rope (4,000 feet of rope was needed!) unraveled by hand.

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