This summer we gave our readers a small taste of our trip to Alaska with Dressage trainer Sue Kolstad. She shared with us her love of this exciting state and best of all her friendships across the state with her students who she visits and trains on a regular basis. Kolstad, and FEI rider and trainer lives in Kentucky and can often be seen in Florida in the winter. With her background in education and her mid-western sensibility, Sue not only conveys her knowledge to her students adjusting to their level and the level of their horses, but also shares the vast knowledge she has learned from her training, clinics, books and symposiums with many of the great dressage trainers of our time.
We only shared a [#27262 override="“taste” this summer of our trip on DressageDaily" title="“taste” this summer of our trip on DressageDaily"], because we have been planning on this feature ever since. We deliberately waited until the Alaskan sun moved into the 24 hour winter darkness, because in the summer where the sky is light for 24 hours Alaskans take advantage of every moment they can to fill their days up with summer activity. We wanted to be sure we could sit them down in front of their computers long enough to read our account!
Hungry for knowledge, and passionate about equestrian sport, the winter months are spent having group get togethers reviewing videos, training on line, and squeezing in daily riding in the few indoor arenas available to them. We saw some wonderful horses, well bred, talented for both the serious amateur and professional. Every new friend had an interesting and rich life. All were happy to share the country they love so much making sure we saw as much of Alaska as we could.
This feature is meant to share more of our journey, and illustrate how even to the end of the continent of North America, equestrian sport is alive and well. Sue gives her account, and we add our version (In the colored box) along with lots of photos!
Tune in tomorrow Sunday, December 30, for the first segment of our week long feature on our journey through this amazing state.
Enjoy – Mary Phelps-Hathaway