My name is Cheryl. I am a long time border/rider at High Country Equestrian Center, (formerly High Country Stables), part time employee in the barn, and occasional student. I am not a trainer or horse expert in any way, just someone who loves these remarkable animals and wants to share some of the strange or amazing or ridiculous things I have seen and experienced over the years.
I never rode as a child. There was no chance in the world my parents would have let me take riding lessons so I had to wait until I was an independent adult (with a very understanding husband).
I started riding in my late 20’s. A woman I worked with rode at High Country and convinced me to come out to the barn. I started taking lessons from the barn manager (at the time) Grant and haven’t stopped riding since.
My lesson horses were Azrael and his mother Gus, both purebred Arabians. Gus taught me to ask for the canter properly and Az taught me everything else. After a few months, I started half-leasing Az and then bought him when his owners put him up for sale.
The first day I owned Az I fell off him twice. It took a long time to recover from the concussion (I was wearing a helmet), cracked tailbone and shattered confidence. Even with that setback, I had been bitten by the horse bug…there was no turning back.
About a month ago, I realized that I will have been riding at High Country for 20 years this September. I have ridden through 3 different owners of the facility and have lost count of the number of barn managers/staff/borders/horses that have come and gone, and even come back, over the years. When I started riding, I remember there were a few riders who were older than myself that I thought of as the ‘barn moms’. They didn’t know everything but were more experienced and willing to help the younger or new riders.
About a month ago, I realized I have become one of the ‘barn moms’ with lots of stories to tell.