"Walkara - Hawk of the Mountains"
Greg Kelsey

Hawk of the Mountains is a depiction of the historical Ute Indian Chief Colorow Ouray Walkara.  He was a large Ute, standing over 6 feet with angular features and piercing eyes that earned him the nickname "Hawk of the Mountains".  His name Walkara referenced the yellow buckskins and face paint he wore.  His band, allied with two notorious mountain men "Pegleg" Smith and James Beckworth, raided ranches and attacked settlers in the Great Basin and along the Old Spanish Trail between New Mexico and California in the 1840's. He was known as one of the greatest horse thieves of all time and was credited with stealing over 3,000 (rumored to be as many as 6,000) horses in one raid on ranchos throughout southern California.     At one time, he was the most wanted man in California for his horse stealing.   The Spanish horses from California were beautiful, strong well-fed animals bringing great prices in New Mexico and all the way up to Utah.  So Walkara stole horses from California to sell in New Mexico and further North, while he traded slaves captured from more docile tribes in the North back in the southern regions of New Mexico and California - capitalizing both directions.  Horse Thief  Canyon and Little Horse Thief Canyon in the Cajon Pass are named for Walkara's thieving exploits.  His tribe was greatly affected by the Mormon settlements on tribal lands and he was known to be a personal friend of Brigham Young.  With action and intensity, Greg captures Walkara at his 'trade' as he races off on a fully tacked Spanish stallion ponying a mare behind.