The Jaquima

The Jaquima is a very simple bridle used by the Vaquero but it is fundamental to the development of the seemingly magical communication between horse and the Vaquero.  The Jaquima consists of three component parts:

The first and perhaps most important part of the Jaquima is the bosal.  The bosal is basically a nose band through which the Vaquero communicates with the horse.  The bosal is traditionally made from braided rawhide and is weighted with a rawhide knot woven into the structure.

The bosal applies pressure on the nose and sides of the horse’s jaw to indicate the rider’s intent.  It is held onto the horse’s head with a hanger, a hanger is somewhat akin to a very simple and very light bridle it consists of a thin, light strip of leather that serves no other purpose than to stop the bosal from dropping off the horse’s nose.

Finally, the reins are formed by tying a twenty-two-foot-long rope, traditionally made from woven mane hair, and called a mecate to the bosal.  The mecate forms a loop forms a continuous rein and leaves a section of rope that attaches loosely to the Vaquero’s belt and is used as a “get down” to keep hold of the horse while Vaquero is on the ground tending cattle.