Ranch owner urges public to consider Agoura for horseback riding to help small business owners after Woolsey Fire

AGOURA HILLS, Calif. (KABC) -- Owner of Connemara Ranch, Talley Hutcherson used to lead trail rides on Malibu ocean trails in the Santa Monica Mountains.

"For five months I've been feeding my horses with the generosity and donations of many women-owned small businesses. I have my horses but I have no income," said Hutcherson

Due to the Woolsey Fire, she's been keeping her horses in Agoura. She says they're a bit lonely and could use a little exercise.

"People don't understand this is really exceptionally beautiful at the moment, and the weather is perfect, the flowers are in super bloom mode. It's actually more beautiful I think," Hutcherson said.

Agoura's trails are wide and the hillsides are blossoming, but it is tough getting the word out to some of the riders.

All skill levels are welcome. And while it appears serene, the ride is more of a workout than most people think.

"I just went riding for the first time in a year two weeks ago, and I was so sore afterwards. I needed to do some yoga and really stretch it out. It's a lot of ab work when you're cantering and trotting like that," said Connemara Hutcherson, Talley's daughter.

And horseback riding is also good for the soul.

"It's the only place that I'm quiet. Riding gives me a great sense of peace and contentment," said Mallory Lewis of Malibu.

Lewis, a puppeteer who's better known as Lamb Chop's mom, said it took some convincing to head to Agoura Hills, but she finds the area breathtaking.

It's $150 for a 90-minute trail ride and if that's a little too steep for you, they have something called a "meet up" where you can come and pet the horses, groom them, feed them and learn all about the culture.

"I do connecting with horses groups. Meet ups that people can join in here if they don't know how to ride or don't want to ride. Usually people donate $20 and spend a couple hours," said Hutcherson.

The ranch also has a Go Fund Me page for those wanting to help.
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