After talking about riding in the South Island of New Zealand for a while, Kate Lattey and her sister finally got around to doing something about it and joined us on the Glenorchy Back Country ride. And we’re so glad they did! Throughout her life, Kate has never been far away from horses and her life now revolves around them – she is an accomplished author writing horse-themed books for young adults. You can find more of her writing here and check out her story below.
What is your day job?
Freelance writer and editor.
How have horses influenced or changed your life?
I started riding when I was ten years old and have never been far from horses since. I rode and competed as a teenager before heading overseas after I graduated from university, and worked with horses in England, Ireland and the United States. On my return to New Zealand I bought a young horse and have produced him over the past few years for competition. I’m currently Head Coach at my local Pony Club and give lessons as well as ride and compete my own horse JJ. I also write horse-themed books for young adults and have 13 titles on Amazon, with my 14th due out soon. So much of what I do in my life revolves around horses that it’s hard for me to imagine life without them! They gave me so much confidence over the years, especially as a teenager. I was a shy kid and without horses to bring me out of my shell I think I would be a very different person today, and I doubt I would have spent as much time overseas working as I did if I’d only been working in an office – horses were always the draw card for my OEs and I learned so much from them in all the countries I visited.
What is your earliest memory of horses?
I remember the first time I rode a horse, at a kindergarten/preschool picnic on a big Clydesdale mare. I had read a few pony books about cantering across the fields with the smell of the wind in the air so I sniffed but all I could smell was horse poo! I was hooked though and started lessons a few years later.
What was your childhood pony called?
Whisper was my first pony.
What does riding or being with horses mean to you?
Horses are so much a part of what I do and who I am that I can’t imagine life without them.
What have horses taught you the most?
Patience and perseverance.
What was your first globetrotting ride?
Glenorchy Back Country ride in 2016 – my first and only (so far).
What made you take the plunge and sign up for a globetrotting holiday?
My sister and I were talking about wanting to ride in the South Island high country – we both wanted to do it but neither of us had got around to organising anything, so we decided to do it together!
What globetrotting rides have you since completed/going to/wanting to complete?
I’d like to do one of the rides in Australia or the USA next but will have to save up $$ first!
What is your most memorable globetrotting moment?
There were so many great moments it’s hard to choose one – we were up the top of the valley for two nights and on the second night it rained and even dumped fresh snow on the top of the mountains (in December!). When we saddled up the next morning it was sleeting and hailing, and we were all bundled into our oilskins and wondering why on earth we’d signed up for this trip – and I think the horses were thinking something along the same lines! But once we got going, the weather cleared and we had a gorgeous long canter up a gently sloping hill that loosened up all of our muscles. The sun came out and we all started smiling and laughing again. Sometimes it’s the less pleasant moments that make the good times so much sweeter!
Why choose this type of travel, as in exploring a new country from the back of a horse?
What better way is there to see any country?
What is your favourite safari horse of all time and why?
I have only taken the one trip but I’ve ridden hundreds of horses over the years in various countries and the horse I had on this ride, Doobie, is one of my all time favourites. He was brilliant and my only regret is that I couldn’t talk his owners into selling him to me so I could take him home!
A tip that every globetrotter should know before going on a ride…
Bring waterproof boots!! Failing that, disposable Glad rubbish bags make excellent ‘waterproof socks’ that will help to keep your feet dry on those damp days 🙂
Finish this sentence – Don’t leave home without….
Waterproof boots. Can’t stress that one enough!