"I met Melinda when we were boarding horses together in college. On one of my first trail rides with her, we took an old switchback trail down from the bluffs to the beach in Santa Barbara; I was the new girl. About half-way down the bluff trail, with Melinda and Prancer in the lead, the trail disintegrated and they rode the avalanche of sand down to the beach below. Her horse slid down on her belly like surfing a big wave. Melinda maintained a quiet sense of calm the whole way down which carried over to me and my Appy-cross as we stood like frozen statues on the crumbling trail. Of course my horse thought it would be a better idea to back down the switchback into the abyss behind us, but with Melinda's gentle coaching from below, we too rode the sand wave down to the beach!
Over the years, Melinda has been my go-to for all things horsey: nutrition, lameness, shoeing, buying, rescue insanity, etc.. She has been my voice of reason. She was the first one I called when my horse of 29 years finally gave in to his failing body. She has a passion for horses that is not blinded by emotion. She is practical, skilled, calm and courageous and sees the same practicality in all types of horses to match all types of people without being judgmental about a person's goals. Not everyone wants to show, or be the best in the ring. Some people just may want to to be a weekend trail rider and that's what she will help him/her achieve.
When I found a horse in Colorado for my 85 year old riding partner, Melinda went to check him out. Knowing the horse was for a woman in her 'golden years', she took MINUTES to clumsily climb into the saddle, she slid off of him down to the ground, fell onto his neck, slid off with a leg stiffly sliding over his rump. She was testing him for a rider with slower reactions and decreased flexibility. She then took him to her farm for 60 days for a trail riding refresher. She rode for her new rider. She walked on the trail alone, and in groups. She let others leave him behind, passed farm equipment, spooked wildlife. She developed a program for horse and RIDER.
I highly recommend Melinda for riding in all disciplines. She is a well-rounded equestrian, an excellent horsewoman with genuine horse sense, and can help you achieve your goals in and out of the saddle without feeling like you are setting your sights too high or too low. Happy Trails!" Kristin, Santa Barbara CA