Follyfoot Farm had it's humble beginnings as a small horse farm in beautiful Metchosin. Sadly, our family outgrew the property and made the tough decision to move on. Nowadays, Follyfoot is based out of High Oaks Stables centrally located on a bus route at 4040 Holland Avenue. High Oaks is a gorgeous 50 acre property that has a 120'x200' outdoor sand ring for the spring/summer and part of the fall and a 66'x 140' indoor hogfuel ring so that we can get out of the blustery wet days that our West Coast winters can throw our way. After only having an outdoor, an indoor has been quite luxurious! In the drier months, the horses get to be horses and graze and play out on the large grass fields. Us riders also get to play in the fields too. Always great fun to jump on grass with varying terrain and do some conditioning gallops and there are a handful of small xctry fences too. We are also a short hack away from the extensive trail system in Thetis Lake and Francis King parks.
Nicole grew up as a horse crazy kid in Wales riding and reading everything she could. Moving to Canada in 1981, Nicole rode western for three years and started her first horse. Life and university took her away from horses until one fateful day at the Saanich Fair, she realized what had been missing from her life for far too long. With 23 years of experience with horses, Nicole has experienced a little bit of everything. From the British Pony Club and gymkhanas to the hunter/jumper world, eventing, trail riding and wilderness guide training.
Unfortunately, for the pocketbook, Nicole has a bit of a soft spot for animals in need. Consequently, several of the animals here were once, or are ongoing, rehabilitation cases. Nothing brings Nicole more happiness than watching animals thrive under proper nutrition, care and love.
Nicole is a CHA certified english and western instructor and also has her NCCP Equine Coaching Theory 1 and Equine Canada Rider Level 8. She has extensive experience with varying personalities and training levels of many different horses, and with riders of different confidence levels and varying backgrounds. Nicole believes that horses are our best teachers and it is our duty to listen carefully to what they are sharing with us. While there are principles of classical horsemanship that should be adhered to, every horse is an individual. How we deliver our requests to one horse may not work for another and it is our responsibility to find out how to speak the language for that particular horse. Nicole regularly pursues her own riding education through clinics, local and off island shows and under her own coach and mentor, EC Level 3 Eventing coach, Jane Stone. These attributes combined with her friendly nature and sense of humour make her a fun, safe and knowledgeable coach. Whether you would like to learn how to ride for the first time, further your skills in dressage or jumping or would just like to learn how to take a horse out on a safe and enjoyable trail ride, solid equitation and horse handling skills are taught with an emphasis on safety and fun. Both english and western tack are available.
When I can't ride anymore, I shall keep horses as long as I can hobble along with a bucket and wheelbarrow. When I can't hobble, I shall roll my wheelchair out by the fence of the field where my horses graze, and watch them. ~Monica Dickens