Heartland Season 17 Episode 3 Recap

This Sunday, another beautiful Heartland episode aired that continued this season’s stories and gave us some cool action sequences.

From Amy and Caleb teaming up to figure out what’s wrong with Caleb’s new pony to Logan working on a new horse, Jack and Tim continuing to figure out their business, Katie discovering a new hobby, and Lou reevaluating her life after losing the election, there was a lot going on.

So, without further ado, here is our recap of Heartland season 17 episode 3.

The anxious pony

As it usually is with most Heartland episodes, there are at least one or two horse-related storylines. And this episode was no different.

While in episode 1702, Amy was helping Edwin with his horse, in this episode, Caleb was the one asking for her help.

At the start of this episode, we saw Caleb arrive at Heartland with his son, Carson, and ask Amy to work with Donut, the pony he bought for Carson. Apparently, although Caleb bought Donut to have Carson learn to ride on him, and the kid absolutely loved the pony, Donut was not quite the tame pony that the auction house made him out to be.

Kerry James as Caleb, Amber Marshall as Amy and Massimos Kastrinos as Carson on Heartland season 17 episode 3

When Caleb got on Donut to show Amy what’s wrong, the pony quickly threw Caleb off, leading Amy to conclude that Donut definitely isn’t a kid’s pony. But, since Caleb bought the pony as Carson’s birthday present and needed him broke and ready by the weekend when Carson’s cowboy birthday party took place, Amy reluctantly agreed to help Caleb out.

And when she heard about the connection Carson and Donut had already formed, Amy knew that she needed to do everything she can to get Donut ready for Carson.

Because it wasn’t just that Carson liked how the pony looked. It turns out that Carson was the one who picked Donut out at the auction house since the little guy was cowering in the corner of his stall until he heard Carson’s voice and came over to the boy nickering like crazy.

Not to mention that Caleb was beating himself up (something he was doing a lot this episode, but more on that in the next section) for letting Carson get attached to the pony before he even knew if Donut was ridable.

So, Amy started her work and figured out that somewhere along the line, Donut had learned that bolting got him out of work. And after she spoke to the auction house about Donut’s history, she knew why.

Donut ended up at the auction house after he was rescued from a ranch where he was kept in a small shed all by himself for months. But before that, Donut was with a loving family where he was ridden by twin six-year-old girls with nothing but a halter.

That was a relief to Caleb because it meant that Donut could be trained. And, since previously Donut was ridden without a saddle, Amy decided to try that.

And what do you know, once Donut was out of the barn, he was calm and even let Amy ride him bareback without any problems.

Later, Caleb took Donut out, too, and he was like a different pony. Which means that Carson got his birthday present after all.

Amber Marshall as Amy, Kerry James as Caleb, Massimos Kastrinos as Carson and Ruby and Emmanuella Spencer as Lyndy on Heartland season 17 episode 3

And we even saw Caleb, Amy, and Lyndy take Carson on a pony ride at the end of the episode, which was incredibly cute. And I couldn’t help but already see a cute little family unit, all four of them huddled around Donut like that.

What do you think of Amy, Caleb, and their kids together like this? All I can think is that they would make a beautiful family.

When it’s right, it’s right

Speaking of Amy and Caleb, this episode was another prime example of the strong friendship the two have formed over the years, but especially after Ty’s death.

We already started seeing this in the last couple of seasons. But in season 16, it really started to become apparent that Caleb and Amy have a real bond.

While Caleb was going through his divorce from Cass, Amy was there to support him and encourage him. And vice versa – Caleb was also there for Amy while she was grieving Ty and then figuring out how to move on.

We especially saw this in episode 13 of the last season, when Amy helped Caleb with the fact that he was getting divorced for the second time, and Caleb assured her that it was okay to want to move on after Ty. In the recap for episode 1613, I even said that they would make a great couple down the line.

It seems like “down the line” might be sooner than we thought, though, because during Heartland season 17 episode 3, we saw the two friends get even closer and seemingly realize that there might be something more between them than friendship.

As I mentioned in the previous section, all throughout this episode Caleb was beating himself up, first about buying Carson Donut, and then about not being a good dad to Carson because he was bad at the practical stuff – remembering dentist appointments, favorite stuffed animals, and so on.

Amy, of course, assured the cowboy that that’s not true. After all, being a single parent is tough, and it’s only natural for Carson to have a hard time adjusting to Cass and Caleb’s separation. But when Caleb didn’t believe Amy when she said that she, too, like every parent on the planet, makes mistakes and fails their kids sometimes, she told him about how Lyndy’s bike tire got crushed under her truck.

That got a few laughs out of Caleb, and he also seemed to relent a little, realizing that maybe his parenting wasn’t as bad as he thought. But he still continued on to say that he considered himself lucky because Amy was his best friend.

Amber Marshall as Amy and Kerry James as Caleb on Heartland season 17 episode 3

Unfortunately, that tender moment was interrupted by Edwin arriving to ask Amy out on a proper date. After all, Edwin had sent her flowers earlier to make sure Amy knew that the next time he asked her out, he meant for it to be a date.

So, Caleb watched as Edwin asked Amy out, which ended up being a cute archery date, and then even asked Amy about how the date went.

But, by the end of the episode, Amy started to realize that Edwin might not be the right guy for her.

Although I’m not sure if she realizes that Caleb is the reason why she felt that way, I sure hope that she will figure it out soon. Especially since Caleb had already figured out that his feelings for Amy might not be as platonic as he first thought based on the conversation they had after Carson’s pony ride.

Caleb: “I’m not afraid of hard work. It’s like you said, sometimes things take effort even when they’re right. But I think that if something’s right and you know it in your gut, then you know it’s worth it.”
Amy: “Still easy to fool yourself, though.”
Caleb: “Fool yourself?”
Amy: “Yeah. Sometimes, you want something to be right, even though deep down you know it isn’t.”

And sure, by the looks of things, Caleb thought that Amy was referring to him instead of Edwin when she talked about wanting it to be right, but it not quite being that way. But it was clear that that wasn’t the case since, at the end of the episode, we saw Amy tell Edwin that she thought they were better off as just friends.

Will we see Amy clear that up in the next episode?

I sure hope so because I don’t want to see Caleb left hanging for too long, especially with everything else he’s going through.

But we might just have to wait until episode 1706 since, according to the show’s official blog, the scenes filmed during the Fan Day event, which both Amy herself Amber Marshall, and Kerry James, who plays Caleb, were part of, will take place in that episode.

Problem solved

While Amy was helping out Caleb, Logan had yet another new client horse – this one courtesy of Tim and his rodeo school.

Rocky, the new horse Tim bought for the rodeo school, doesn’t like barrels very much, which is a problem since it was meant to be a lesson horse for beginner barrel racers. So, Tim asked Logan to help out with Rocky.

Logan, of course, had a suspicion that his girlfriend Miley (who we met back in episode 1611), who works with Tim as the barrel racing instructor, had something to do with the request. I mean, why else would Tim ask Logan instead of his daughter? But Miley reassured Logan that that wasn’t the case and that his hard work was starting to pay off. So, he ended up agreeing to work with Rocky.

And Logan worked with the horse diligently, although his mind was on something else.

Earlier in the episode, Logan asked Amy if Miley would like a red jacket he had picked out for her. See, Logan wanted to gift something to Miley for her next rodeo, something that screamed that he loved her.

Amy suggested that he could just tell Miley that he loves her, but Logan wasn’t sure, so all throughout the episode, we saw him agonize about just how he should tell Miley those three magical words.

And it didn’t help that Tim (being fired up from his discussion with Jack about their business, but more on that in the next section) got on Logan’s case about not training Rocky hard enough right after Logan gave Miley the jacket but before he could tell her what he wanted to say.

Jaelynn Thora Brooks as Miley and Drew Davis as Logan on Heartland season 17 episode 3

Fortunately, after a few training sessions, Rocky started to improve, which boosted Logan’s confidence as well. And the next day, Tim even apologized for biting Logan’s head off, even though the real reason for Tim’s frustration was his cattle business with Jack.

So, later on, Logan got Miley to ride Rocky, and Rocky ran the barrels like he never had a problem.

Despite that, Logan did think that one more day with Rocky couldn’t hurt, seeing that Rocky was a little on the edge earlier in the day.

But just when Miley was done saying that Logan should work with Rocky another day if he thought it would benefit the horse, Logan blurted out that he loved her.

Logan: “I love you! I’m sorry if that’s out of the blue, I just… I want you to know. You don’t have to say it back, I get it.”
Miley: “I love you too.”

Unfortunately, their kiss after their confessions was cut short by Tim asking for a progress report. And Logan, probably not wanting to get another tongue-lashing from Tim, said that Rocky was good to go.

And he really was, as far as Logan and Miley thought. But sadly, at the very end of the episode, we saw Miley trying to showcase her skills on Rocky at the rodeo school only to be tossed off.

The episode ended with Logan running up to an unconscious Miley, frantically calling 9-1-1. And Lyndy watching the whole thing right on the other side of the fence. What a cliffhanger, right?

At least we won’t have to wait too long to find out the extent of Miley’s injuries because the next episode of Heartland airs this Sunday. And the synopsis for it (you can read it at the end of the article) even mentions that in episode 1704, Logan will be blaming himself for Miley’s accident.

I have a feeling that Miley will be okay. But it will still be interesting to see how Logan gets over this hurdle in the coming episodes. Hopefully, his confidence won’t be damaged too severely. And that his relationship with Miley won’t suffer either.

The neighborly thing to do

Another big storyline that moved forward during Heartland season 17 episode 3 was the one regarding Jack and Tim’s business rival, Nathan Pryce.

Ever since the first episode of season 17, Tim and Jack have been worrying about their business, especially now that Sam sold Pryce the land that Heartland Beef was leasing to graze their cattle.

So, in the last episode, Jack and Tim desperately tried to set up a meeting with somebody from Pryce Family Beef. And they finally managed to reach Pryce’s foreman. But now the foreman was ghosting them again.

Luckily, the next day, the foreman finally got back to Jack, yet the news was not good. Sam’s former land was not for lease because Pryse needs it for their own cattle since they’re expanding.

That prompted a heated discussion between Jack and Tim about how they should really think about downsizing their herd or else they will go broke trying to feed the herd hay half the summer since they don’t have the grazing land anymore.

Understandably, Tim was against it because he knew if they sold part of their herd, Heartland Beef won’t survive. But Jack didn’t see any other way forward. That is until his granddaughters had an idea.

Amy, seeing how troubled Jack was, suggested that since Pryce looks like Jack, he might think like him, too, meaning that Jack should reach out and ask Pryce for a meeting over coffee at Heartland. Make Pryce see Jack and Tim as neighbors instead of business rivals. Lou seconded that idea, saying that it’s a smart business strategy to connect to your competitor on an emotional level.

So, it was settled. Jack would ask Pryce himself to come to Heartland for a meeting. And to everyone’s surprise, Pryce agreed.

So, the next day, Jack and Tim were gearing up for the meeting. And Jack even invited Lou to join them for additional support. But when Pryce arrived at the ranch, he was not what any of them expected.

Instead of the Nathan Pryce that Jack knew from way back, his son, Nathan Pryce Jr., showed up.

It threw everybody for a loop. But then Pryce explained that his dad had retired and he’s now running things.

It was an awkward introduction, to say the least, especially when Lou, who went to school with Pryce, although he was a few years behind Lou, mentioned how he had left suddenly back when they were in school.

But after the initial hurdles, Jack, Tim, and Lou did manage to negotiate a deal with Pryce.

Spencer Lord as Nathan, Michelle Morgan as Lou, Shaun Johnston as Jack and Chris Potter as Tim on Heartland season 17 episode 3

They told Pryce how precious that land was to Heartland Beef and pushed hard on the fact that they love being neighbors with another ranching family.

Pryce agreed to carve out a few acres for them, but he wanted Heartland to pay double what Sam was asking.

That wasn’t something Tim and Jack couldn’t afford. Luckily, Lou intervened and used her business skills to negotiate further.

She knew that Nathan needed access to the river, and the safest way for Pryce’s cattle to get to water was through a ravine that runs across Heartlan’d land. So, when Jack asked Pryce to lease the land to them for the same rate for a year, and in return, they would provide Pryce access to the river free of charge, Pryce agreed.

Will this be the end of the beef between Jack, Tim and Pryce?

I really can’t tell. I mean, I hope so because, although this was an interesting storyline, I wouldn’t want them to drag it out longer than necessary. But we’ll see.

Now I just wonder if Nathan Pryce Jr. will pop up this season in some other capacity.

The show seemed to set up some intrigue around the man (read more about it in the “Last Thoughts” section) in this episode. So, it leads me to believe that this is not the last time we will see Nathan Pryce Jr.

Getting off the matt and starting something new

After the last episode’s upset of Rick beating out Lou for the Mayor of Huson, on this episode, we saw just how well, or rather not well, Lou was dealing with her change of pace.

Ever since Lou was elected mayor all the way back in episode 1310, she’s been go, go, go. I mean, it’s not easy being a mayor on top of running two businesses and trying to be a good mom to her two daughters and wife to Peter.

But now that she’s not the mayor anymore, she finally got a moment to stop and reevaluate things. But, knowing how much Lou likes to keep busy, that was easier said than done.

Right at the start of the episode, we saw her going on a healthcare kick, doing yoga and meditation multiple times a day, and drowning herself in green protein smoothies.

Her family recognized it for what it was – Lou was wallowing – no matter how much she tried to deny it. Tim even called her out on it and told her to shake off the loss and get back out there.

But it was actually Jessica who ended up helping Lou regain her confidence.

In the beginning portion of the episode, we saw Tim meet Jessica at an old storefront in Hudson for a big surprise.

What’s the surprise?

Well, Jessica wants to open her own gallery in Hudson to show off her work and bring in new clients. And she found the perfect property for the gallery – an old, historic building right in the center of Hudson.

Tim was all for Jessica’s idea, even calling it the best one he had heard in a while, but he was a little concerned about the state the property was in.

But Jessica actually had bigger problems to deal with.

Chris Potter as Tim and Michelle Nolden as Jessica on Heartland season 17 episode 3

Since it was a historic building, she had to get permits to do anything with the property. But the Heritage Committee was giving Jessica the runaround and telling her that the permits she needed could take up to a year.

Obviously, that was absurd, so Tim suggested Jessica get Lou involved. After all, until very recently, Lou was the Mayor of Hudson and, therefore, has some major sway when it comes to the town of Hudson.

At first, Jess was a bit hesitant to ask Lou for help since Lou was already dealing with so much. But Tim encouraged his wife by telling her that Lou needed a new purpose anyway, so she stops spending all her time at home in her yoga pants.

So, after showing Lou the space, Jess asked Lou to help her out with the Heritage Committee. And Lou agreed instantly, already imagining what the property could become.

And one phone call later, Lou had a promise from the Committee that the permits will be issued to Jessica right after she submits the designs for the space.

Lou was riding high from her win for Jessica that she didn’t think that agreeing to use the architect that the Heritage Committee recommended in return for the permits was a big deal. However, when Jessica heard that that was the concession Lou had to make, she wasn’t happy.

Luckily, by the end of Heartland season 17 episode 3, both Lou and Jessica both realized the error of their ways and apologized to each other.

Lou: “I overstepped, I know. I think, losing the election really shook my confidence, and helping you renewed it. I even started to imagine myself being more involved, even say a partner. But this is your business, it’s your baby, and I should have respected that. I’m sorry.”
Jessica: “Thank you.”

As a goodwill gesture, Lou even made a mock-up for the art gallery window that proudly featured Jessica’s name since Lou thought that more people should know who Jessica is.

Jessica, of course, was touched. So much so that Jessica agreed to Lou’s idea of being business partners, saying that she doesn’t want to take on the gallery on her own and that Lou has great instincts when it comes to a project like this.

It will be very interesting to see how this partnership will go.

Both Lou and Jessica are headstrong women who know what they want. However, when those wants are different, that can lead to conflict. It already has in the past. So, I’m hoping that this new business endeavor of theirs won’t end up ruining their friendship.

It would be great to see the opposite happening, actually, and them working together as a well-oiled machine. That would certainly be a good change of pace for both Lou and Jessica.

Trying something new

Finally, we have Katie’s storyline because, in this episode, she was up to some pretty interesting things.

At the beginning of the episode, we saw Katie nervously checking her tablet for the results of the competition she submitted her short story to.

Jack, seeing how jittery Katie was, advised her to do something else instead of keep refreshing the website. So, after hearing Amy tell Shadow that she won’t be able to take him out on a ride, Katie offered to ride the horse instead. After all, she had gotten the idea for her story while riding with Logan in the previous episode.

But while out on a trail, Katie had an unfortunate encounter with a boy on a dirt bike.

The boy, Brandon, rode right past Katie and spooked Shadow. Luckily, Katie was able to rain the horse in, but when Brandon stopped in front of Katie, she scolded him, telling him that he should slow down when he’s passing somebody and that instead of telling her to calm down, he should try apologizing.

The next morning at breakfast, Katie was visibly upset. And when Lou tried talking to Katie about what’s wrong, the teen just blew up on Lou, ranting about how everything she tries gets ruined, and stormed out.

It, of course, was a reaction to the results of the writing competition.

Apparently, Katie had researched what stories were chosen as finalists in the past and wrote a story that she thought the judges would like. Yet, she didn’t even place in the finals because the judges deemed Katie’s story too familiar, predictable, and a mimicry of other works.

So Katie went on a walk to calm down and accidentally came upon a dirt bike track, where she met Brandon again.

This time, they actually talked, and Brandon even offered Katie to use his bike to try riding herself as an apology for what happened yesterday on the trail. But Katie refused, saying that Lou would kill her if she found out. And it didn’t help that another rider, Ellie, rode up while Katie and Brandon were talking and called Katie a snob and a “prim country girl who doesn’t like the mud.”

After getting home from her walk, Katie was feeling even worse, so she finally confided in her mom, saying that she feels like the judges called her, not her story, unoriginal and predictable. Lou being on the verge of a new venture herself, told Katie that maybe it’s time for both of them to take on a new challenge.

Katie: “I feel silly about getting so upset over a stupid competition.”
Lou: “It’s not silly. You know, when we create something, it can really hurt when someone rejects it. I get it.”
Katie: “It just… It feels like they think I am predictable and unoriginal. I tried to write something everyone would like.”
Lou: “Maybe that’s part of the problem. You know, you gotta… you gotta write something that’s you. You know, use your own experiences.”
Katie: “Mom, I’m a student and a waitress. I do the same things, like, every day.”
Lou: “Well, then it’s time to try something new, you know, take a risk. We can’t succeed if we’re trying to be something we’re not.”

I’m confident Lou wouldn’t have said that if she knew just what the new thing Katie decided to try was. But nonetheless, at the end of the episode, we saw Katie climb on Brandon’s bike and take off through a puddle after Brandon made sure that it’s what Katie really wants to do and that she knew to use the rear brake instead of the front one.

Kasra Wong as Brandon and Baye McPherson as Katie on Heartland season 17 episode 3

Katie actually looked excited to try dirt biking. And it helped that it looked like there already was a connection between Katie and Brandon.

How long will this new hobby of Katie’s last? I guess we will have to wait and see. But by the looks of things, it might just carry us into the second half of the season, if not until the end of it.

And I hope it does because it would be nice to see Katie hang out with a boy her own age and one that she wasn’t harboring a crush on in season 16.

Last thoughts on Heartland season 17 episode 3

You know the unfamiliar guy who appeared in the season 17 trailer? I definitely didn’t expect him to be the man behind Pryce Family Beef, especially since the show led us to believe that Pryce Beef is run by somebody closer to Jack’s age.

But then we see Amy see the mystery man while out on a ride and later find out that he’s Nathan Pryce Jr.

Well, played, Heartland writers, well played!

READ NEXT: Heartland season 17 episode 4 recap

But what was the most interesting thing about all this was the conversation between Amy and Nathan.

Amy introduced herself, then they talked about ponies and broncs, and then Nathan excused himself.

Amy: “I would have introduced myself at the river, but it seemed like you had somewhere to be.”
Nathan: “Saw you working that pony earlier. Can’t find a proper horse for that cowboy?”
Amy: “Actually, I think that they are very well suited.”
Nathan: “Remind me not to get on that fella’s bad side then. I’d take a bronco over a pony any day.”
Amy: “You’re a bronc rider?”
Nathan: “A long time ago. You’ll have to excuse me. My girl Molly has been home alone all day, so…”

It seemed like an odd little interaction, and I don’t really know what to make of it. If you saw the episode, what did you think? Let me know in the comments below!

The only conclusion I have is that the writers are setting up Nathan’s story for a future episode. So, I guess we will have to wait for the rest of season 17 to air to find out.

Promo for Heartland season 17 episode 4

Here’s the promo for Heartland episode 1704:


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The next episode of Heartland, will be called “A Piece Apart,” and during it, we will see Tim’s son Shane return to Heartland for a visit with his future wife and Tim doing everything he can to make it perfect. On top of that, Amy will be dealing with Lyndy’s sudden fear of horses after the little girl witnessed Miley’s fall up close and personal. Also, Logan will be blaming himself for Miley’s accident, while Katie will be struggling with a friendship.


  1. Another great recap Kristiana! I may be the minority but I think the characters Amy and Caleb are better off as close friends. In the early seasons when Caleb was first on the show there was a great friendship vibe but the episode when Amy was supposed to be dating Caleb there was no “spark”. I think the new Pryce character will be good to see develop. Caleb is just to flighty. Just my opinion.
    Do not see boo hoo Lou and Jessica working well together, Lou likes to take over other people’s ideas
    And wants things her way as always. How old is Katie supposed to be on this show? For a while she wasn’t old enough to babysit and now she had been working at Maggie’s form2 years. They have used so many and now not sure her age and why now her storyline is having a boyfriend. Just curious.
    Cannot wait for next week’s recap.

  2. I think you will find out in seasons 17-6 that Caleb will have very little of a part in the Fan Day competition because Amy will be competing against Nathan Pryce in the working cowboy horse competition. I think you will also find out Nathan’s girl Molly is his dog who you saw when Amy first met Nathan out riding as the camera did focus just on Molly. The dog isn’t an actor dog but a trained herding dog and we may see some scenes with Molly herding the cattle. Appears the writers are putting a lot into Nathan’s character with a back story and setting him up as Amy’s new neighbor close by her.

    1. I believe the dog (Molly) is Amber Marshall’s border collie Rein. The markings are identical to pictures of her dog.

      1. The dog Molly isn’t Amber’s dog as I pointed out in my comment Molly is a trained herding dog. The dog’s owner and trainer posted pictures on her Instagram when they were filming for the show. The dog will be shown more in upcoming episodes and actually, Molly’s real name is Dan.

  3. Heartland does it again. This episode provides a glimpse into the future. Provoking a lot of thought. Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us. Looking forward to next week. Heartland fan forevermore.

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