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The most important tool for farriers is their body. Yet, over the span of a career, the body breaks down due to cumulative destruction generated by the day-to-day work. No farrier has ever beat Father Time.
Making it beyond the average career expectancy of a farrier requires working smarter through various means. Farriers have found success through increasing physical fitness to strengthen the tool or taking on help to extend the tool’s life.
After more than 40 years of horseshoeing, Bernalillo, N.M., farrier Brad Dirickson has reached the point in his career where the wear and tear has caught up with him. Not ready to hang up his apron, Dirickson extends his career by changing how much time he spends behind the wheel.
From top to bottom: The door to Dirickson’s shop opens to the drive, which loops back to the street, allowing clients to trailer in without backing up. The shop has two ties for working with horses. A propane forge and coke forge are near the anvil and work area.
Spending too much time behind the wheel driving to appointments has worsened Dirickson’s back health as the day grows. Even getting in and out of the…