Crystal was raised on a small ranch in Siskiyou County, California. She started riding as a toddler in the saddle in front of her mother. She competed in her first horse show, a lead line class, at the young age of two.
Her mother was a barrel racer and her father a team roper, but the rodeo scene just wasn’t for her. Instead she started showing all-around in 4-H. After showing all-around for several years, Crystal moved into combined training. Burnt out on horse show politics, competing against the clock proved to be the fun and challenge she was looking for. The thrill of of galloping through the woods and clearing solid fences was the ultimate adventure. Don’t let the fancy English attire fool you though, inside Crystal will always be a country girl at heart and enjoys working cows, trail riding, and thinks it would be a blast to get into mounted shooting.
Her passion for equine rehabilitation began out of necessity. Unable to afford finished show horses, Crystal had to settle for “fixer-uppers”. She soon discovered the joy of taking an animal that had been counted out or set aside, and restoring its full potential with a little TLC. Over the years Crystal has rehabilitated many horses and then placed them in loving homes. She usually has at least one “fixer upper” in her care in addition to her own riding horses.
Crystal’s endeavors in rehabilitating horses led her to obtain her degree in Veterinary Technology. She attended Eastern Wyoming College in Torrington, WY, and interned with Panorama Equine Medical and Surgical center in Redding, CA.
After graduating, Crystal was hired as the stable manager for a guest ranch in northern California. “Wrangling dudes” and caring for 40-60 head of horses really teaches you about horse and human nature and the interaction between the two. It was here that Crystal developed her savvy for pairing horse and rider. Between purchasing several new head for the ranch each year and incoming leased strings of dude horses Crystal’s skills in quickly evaluating horses developed.
In 2010 Crystal began her journey in photography. Only two months after taking on the new hobby, she placed first and third in her first competition. A few months later her work was displayed in the Red Bluff Bull and Gelding Sale Art Show.
Crystal now lives in Cottonwood, California with her husband and five children. She works as a special needs assistant at Gerber Elementary School, and assists her husband with commercial and wedding photography, as well as pursuing her own photography and natural horsemanship blogging.