1996 learning with Pat and Linda Parelli in Colorado for a month when first opened their study center
1996 Linda Paralli testing me on Level 2 with my horse Z.B. in Colorado
PRIVILEGE of riding with Tom Dorrance in 1997 will NEVER BE FORGOTTEN. Ellie rode Don’s ZB in the class
A bit about me&how I got started. I started out with Pat Parelli. I rode a month at his place in 1996 when they very first opened International Study Center in Pagosa Springs, Colorado. This is where I passed my level 2 test, then I met Buck Brannaman with whom I have spent most of my time mentoring. In the meantime I was so hungry to continue my knowledge, I asked John Harms (a student teacher of Parelli) to do his first clinic at my stables and continued to host him in our area to continue to learn. Kim Brungrabber and Sheila Shallow continued the hosting to educate our area. I used to drive my horses competitively in CDE's. This new style of training was so life changing that I invested all my time in learning and developing myself although I miss driving. Buck Brannaman mentored with Ray Hunt and the Dorrance brothers and continues the closest teaching & same philosophy. I rode twice a year when Buck Brannaman came to states nearby and rode in both his clinics each day.In 2002, I was invited to attend a 10 day clinic at his ranch.That was an experience to spend all day riding with him - what I learned was irreplaceable. When Buck still rode our horses, I was one of the lucky ones to have Buck riding my stallion. I will never forget the lightness and how it felt to ride Opus Black Mikasa after Buck rode him those 4 days. I also spent a majority of time riding my stallion in clinics with Dave Seay -I include Dave as a substantial part of my learning and now can easily do things I never would have had the confidence with a stallion- had I not met him.
To have rode with Tom Dorrance and Ray Hunt was the absolute honor of my lifetime.What a privilege I was able to have and I hold dearly. I listen to the Rick Lamb show firstname.lastname@example.org he gave a tribute to Ray on his show- "Ray Hunt passed away March 12, 2009 --- that marked the end of a era.If you're not familiar with Ray Hunt, he was the keystone figure in the revolution in horsemanship.He took the work of his mentor Tom Dorrance to the public in a very new, very different kind of Horsemanship clinic in the mid 70's. Taking the horse's point of view in account is what started the revolution. Ray met Tom Dorrance in the mid 60's and it changed his life and his entire approach to horsemanship.Ray also always mentions that you have to give respect to the horse to get respect back, and a horse is a mirror of what we offer to them. Ray's clinics got the ball rolling and others came on after him and have taken this whole thing to new levels; but it could not have happened the way it did without Ray Hunt." All of us whom had the opportunity to have met Ray, misses him and the Dorrance brothers.It is now up to us to continue what they offered.
I rode with Leslie Desmon in 5-7 clinics - she is the one who rode with Tom for 2 years to have the privilege to write his book - True Horsemanship through Feel. Tom required that time spent with him before the book was written - she had to experience and not just write words.
I met Richard Thompson (who mentored from Buck) when he held a clinic on dominant horses in Illinois. I drove to see what he had to say and from then on I hosted Richard Thompson, organizing his clinics twice per year for over 5 years.He was the best to explain herd dominance, their dynamics and to learn to "speak" their language.
Furthering my dressage background, I rode in Terry Church clinics. Terry rode with the Dorrance brothers and Buck and showed higher level dressage. I also had the privilege to ride with dressage master, Frank Grelo in 2002. From Frank, I received one of my greatest compliments.He pointed me out and said whomever I learned from- it was good and though I used a western saddle; it still was dressage I offered the horse. He also pointed out 2 things about my horses I took for granted; She came up & moved over to the mount block to pick me up and stood still for mounting. He also noted how soft she was when I picked up on the reins.
As you can see my social life in summers was a clinic junkie. I spent substantial time riding with Jeff Griffith in 2000 and I did a 10 day clinic with Lynn Palm in 2006.I use bits and pieces from others I have learned from. Cesar Millan (The dog whisperer) is my hero; I love how he explains use of energy and the owner's responsibility - how that also applies to our prey animals.Exercise, discipline; and then affection - creates balance in a animal.
Buck Brannaman riding Opus Black Mikasa 1998 Photo credit Judith Lessard
1999 - Dave Seay & his famous horse Dove. Ellie on Mikasa in S. Carolina
Ellie starting a Arabian youngster Zip with Joe Woulters in a colt start class 1999
Buck teaching Ellie "feel" on the reins
2000 - Ellie on ZB & Buck Brannaman on Pet, his horse he used in the Horse Whisperer movie.
Richard Thompson riding Mystique Ellie riding Chizal- Training my Moriesian youngsters on the trails. Oct 2002 Photo Credit Kim Brungrabber
Mike Beck broke his no stallion rule in his clinic when he saw how Opus Black Mikasa behaved. Mike can sing & ride ! 2002
Frank Grelo & Ellie on her Moriesian Sheer Elegance May 2002. I received one of my best compliments of who I previously learned from, so relates to dressage. Frank is from Canada – Cedar Mills Classical Riding School. Photo credit -Teresa Stevens
2003 Ellie training Julie's Lipizzan Stallion in a Jeff Griffith clinic. Photo credit - Randy Kohlhase
Dave Sea motivating Ellie riding Mikasa bridleless
Moriesian are Versatile - working cows with Mikasa in a Buck Brannaman clinic