Her name wasn't actually Guinevere when I met her. It was Harley, but that just didn't seem to fit a horse with such a Renaissance look. Gwen was born some time in 1987, or so I believe. Her past is a bit of a mystery. She's half Morgan and half Shire, and 100% beautiful--a wanna-be Friesian. She stands about 15 hands tall, but there's no mistaking that she's part draft horse! She's black. I used to say that she faded a little, but now that I can compare her to Shylah (who REALLY fades) I'd have to say that Gwen stays pretty darn near jet black!

I kind of had my doubts about her shortly after I got her. She and I had some "issues" as one of my former roommates would say! I bought her on March 11, 2000, and she's been steadily getting better and better behaved since then. She's hardheaded, and infinitely more stubborn even than Thunder...and that's pretty darn stubborn! But she's very a sweet horse, she loves people, and she's a blast to ride. With a trot like that there is really no need for gaited horses. She has problems though. She went through a fairly mild case of founder in the spring of... uh... I think it was 2002, and according to the vet, it wasn't the first time. As if bone rotation wasn't bad enough, she also has a cracked coffin bone and chipped navicular. She isn't sound, and she never will be. She can't walk up hills, and she can't handle rough terrain. Good thing Wilton is flat as a pancake... She's gorgeous when she runs (which she will do on her own in the pasture) but under saddle she's pretty much a walk/trot horse. She's really good on the roads, and I'm determined to get over my own fear of road-riding and really have her out there a lot more in the years to come. After all, there just isn't anywhere else to ride around here (for those of you who have easy access to I used to...count your blessings!)

I had planned (you know how plans go...) for Gwen to have a baby in the spring of 2004, so I sent her up to Thundering Hooves Ranch in northern CA where she was supposed to fall madly in love with Juncal A, the studmuffin bay Andalusian. However, she apparently failed to read this part of the manual. She was unappreciative of his efforts to remedy her un-pregnant status, and after the first attempt she quite frankly wanted no more of that, and was not shy about making that very clear (something about kicking him several times really got the message across...) AI did not work either. So, she gets to be cool Auntie Guinevere. Shylah adores her, but it's really not mutual. After you look at all the pretty pictures of Guinevere, be sure to go look at Shylah's page!

I don't keep this page updated, but you can read more about Gwen on THE BLOG!

Here is Gwen modeling her gorgeous tack, custom-made by Brian Hochstrat Saddle Company.

Gwen in paddock
Here's Gwen one day after I bought her. She settled in right away here, and never seemed to mind that she was in a new place.

Gwen's head
This was also one day after I bought her, on a roll of b/w film I was using for Photography class.

Gwen at feeder
A typical view of Guinevere--eating. She's a VERY easy keeper.

Wow, we sure had an ugly fence... it's since been redone...

I don't keep this page updated, but you can read more about Gwen on THE BLOG!

My advice to anyone who has horses:

1) Hug your horse as often as you can. You never know when one day all you will have is the memory of that.
2) Don't ever let riding become a chore. Ride because you want to ride. Ride because you like to ride. If it feels like you're only riding because you feel like you have to, then get away from it for a while. Take a break. Just hang out with your horse. Go for walks with your horse. Go to a horse show. Read a horse novel. Watch a horse movie. Those things never fail to motivate me.
3) Remember something about every ride. When you ride again you can forget the last thing, but always remember something about your most recent ride. I don't remember my last ride on Thunder, and I wish that I did. 

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