A horse drawing a snowplow

Not so long ago I made a post about a horse drawn lawn mower I had come across while visiting a Swedish castle. Apparently horses doubling as gas powered machines are a thing in Sweden. According to an article on SVT, a municipality owned open-air museum near Stockholm, called Torekällberget introduced a sustainable solution to snow clearance —Helge, a Gotland pony, now doubles as a snowplow.

Making a Horse snowplow

Helge’s transformation into a plough engine involves a makeshift design: half a pallet attached with some planks and a lot of screws. When asked about the public’s reactions to this unconventional construction, the museum representative mentioned a spectrum of comments, from enthusiastic praise to constructive criticism. Admitting that the plough might not be the most sophisticated, they point out the practical necessity that led to its creation.

The Need for Innovation

The decision to use a horse as a snowplow stems from the museum’s challenge of clearing pastures quickly after snowfall to ensure the well-being of the animals. By repurposing leftover materials into a plough, they’ve found a sustainable solution that not only benefits the museum but also keeps the horse engaged and content.

Advantages of Equine-Powered Snowplowing

During the interview, the advantages of using a horse with a plough became evident. Helge can navigate small spaces with ease, there are no exhaust fumes, the process is relatively quiet, and, perhaps most importantly, everyone involved, including the horse, finds it very enjoyable. The interviewee emphasized that Helge’s well-being is a priority, ensuring he doesn’t work for extended periods. With a maximum of one hour per session and the ability to set his own pace, Helge’s role as a snowplow is a win-win situation.

Since I can’t embed the video directly from SVT, I uploaded it to my YouTube channel and added English subtitles. You can watch it below:

What else will horses replace next?! Stay tuned to find out!

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