Payden "The Mountain Man" Talbott

This blog is about Payden Talbott. Payden is a mountain man, having been raised in Buffalo, Wyoming. He currently calls the Billings, Montana area home, and his heart is definitely in the Rocky Mountains. Pretty much everything that he does for fun requires a mountain to do it the way he wants to do it. Hunting, trapping, fishing, riding, hiking, camping or basically enjoying the mountains and outdoors.

Still a fuzzy mountain man


Payden comes from a family of horsemen. They raise saddle horses and mules, and his uncle Jay is a farrier. He grew up amongst those animals and was inspired to become a farrier by watching his uncle trim and shoe as a child. Payden was drawn to be a farrier because he wanted a specialized and demanding career that required physical work and is mentally challenging. Farriery certainly has both in spades.

Since Payden had been doing quite a bit of shoeing before coming to Heartland Horseshoeing School, he came in with experience. We have been able to build on that experience, and Payden is now an American Farrier’s Association Certified Farrier in the 11th week of his Journeyman Farrier Course. He is well on his way to becoming a Certified Journeyman Farrier, and is doing a lot of handmades and forging with that goal in front of him. When we took the class to the Oklahoma Farrier’s Association, Payden won both of the forging classes. On the lighter side, he is also the originator of Tie-Dyed-Tuesday that many of the class are observing this year.

Waiting on a heat on Tie-Dyed-Tuesday


Payden being presented with his trophies by Craig Stark, CJF.


Payden competing in Oklahoma

Another advantage of already being in the industry was that he knew about Heartland Horseshoeing School. I have always said that it is pretty rare for someone to find us by accident. We get a lot of farrier’s kids and relatives, as well as many people like Payden that are already shoeing a bit. Payden is good friends with HHS graduate Sam Zalesky, CJF, and he is the one that sent him this way. During the internship in July that our Journeyman students get to go on, Payden is going to Heartland Horseshoeing School graduate Joe Nygren, CJF, in Wisconsin. Joe has also been on the American Farrier’s Team.


Payden’s goals are straightforward and focused. He wants to become a Journeyman, compete on the American Farrier’s Team, and make his mark on the farrier industry. I would say that is definitely going to happen. I am certain that he will one day be known in the industry as a toolmaker and competitor. He will make the lives of horses the best they can be, while making horse owners happy with their farrier.

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