Hello readers and riders!

Congratulations on being the lucky ones to read my first post! You may laugh, you may cringe, I hope I’ll at least get a smile out of you, but overall I want you to be entertained and learn something new. Before I get ahead of myself, however, I’d like to provide a little introduction. I’m a horse crazy college student who unfortunately lives a couple hours from home. I ride English style, meaning there’s no horn to hang onto and you’ve got to keep both hands on the reins, but as all of you lucky visitors to Black Mountain Ranch know, horse lovers of all disciplines find common ground when discussing these amazing animals that carry us tirelessly across all types of terrain. So I hope to share my experiences with you as I navigate my way through school, and try my best to keep up with my riding by going home, training, and showing as often as I can.

I am in my third year of college down at Baylor University, a private university in the heart of Waco, Texas. I am studying Neuroscience, while also preparing to take the MCAT next semester; I hope to be accepted into Med school after I earn my Bachelor’s. Now, you might be thinking I’m crazy for even thinking I could ride while pursuing such goals, but I’ve surprisingly managed to make it work over the past two and a half years. It sure has not been an easy trip, but few worthwhile things in life come to us easily. I’ve even managed to keep my GPA pretty darn high over these past 4 semesters, which I’ll have to say is my proudest achievement. But enough about school! I’ve been riding my entire life, and I have nearly done it all- foxhunting, eventing, pony club, C shows, B shows, A shows, AA shows, hunters, jumpers, ponies, parades, you name it! I began riding a little brown Paso Fino pony when I was three, since my wonderful, supportive parents thought a gaited breed would be more suitable for beginner. Nobody could predict what a pistol that little guy was! Numerous falls later, I grew an iron resolve and a tough attitude characteristic to many horse enthusiasts who have tumbled and got right back on- you who have developed it or seen it in another know exactly what I am talking about. It’s that heart that encouraged me to not give up on riding when I had multiple papers and tests due, with a show right around the corner. It’s that resolve which made me determined to do well in school and finish out each semester strong. It’s that courage which inspired me to dream of becoming a doctor. The animals we are lucky enough to know during our childhood certainly shape us to become the individuals we are today.

So to wrap up, I hope to simply share my horse-related experiences with you, and give you a bit of insight on how I have managed to juggle Real Life and my absolute passion while not sacrificing performance in either. Don’t be surprised if I interject stories about my friends on four hooves in the meantime- they’re the ones that make it all worthwhile. If you have any questions or want me to elaborate on anything you read, please don’t hesitate to comment! I want to make these posts enjoyable for all of you readers, so feedback is heartily welcomed.

May your trail rides be peaceful, gallops be swift, horses be steady, and may that sweet, comforting horsey smell linger long after you’ve left the barn.

-Hilary Tandy

Long Distance Riding at BMR


  1. SIL

    best blog post ever.

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