I was raised around horses. My family has always been avid outdoors people and I have an extreme respect for public wilderness. I love that our country values and preserves natural places at the federal, state, and county levels and provides places for people to play. My favorite way to play has always been exploring these places on horseback. The horses are part of my family. My mom and I have been riding our mare and colt matching horse set together as long as I can remember. I can’t keep track of the number of friends I’ve made from sharing the horses and introducing people to the joy of trail riding. My childhood riding club helped me gain life skills, confidence, and responsibility and I will always be grateful for that experience.
I grew up in Wisconsin, spent a decade in Colorado, and have ended up a proud resident of Illinois. The horses have been there every step of the way. People are often shocked when I tell them I couldn’t be happier to have left Colorado for Illinois. It is beautiful here but you have to learn to look for it and to appreciate the subtle instead of the majestic. I love the slow, lazy rivers, the canopy of trees over head, the dappled light patterns of the shadows the leaves cast on the trail, the incredible clouds in the big, open bluebird skies, the sunsets that sink for hours on the flat horizons, the gentle waves of the prairie grasses in late summer, the magic of the fireflies lighting up the night, and the endless variety of flora and fauna. This state that I love is often overlooked.
I started this website partly because my Type A personality couldn’t handle the amount of research it took to find awesome new places to ride and don't even get me started on the trouble I had finding a farrier, hay, and other horse necessities. But more than that I hope that I can continue to bring people together through our four-legged equine friends, promote our natural spaces and preserves, give kids (and adults!) the riding club experience that I learned so much from, and foster a love for this very underappreciated fly-over state.