Hidden Ponds Equestrian Centre
2902 Trinity Church Road
Monroe, NC 28110

Here’s some history of Hidden Pond
Kim Rodden has owned the Hidden Pond property for about 20 years. At first, it is where she kept her show and training horses, and at that point, she was showing a lot both in and out of state; she didn’t want the responsibility for any boarders and focused on her own horses. When she first bought the farm, it was broken down with little fencing, so she rebuilt the barn, fenced in the pasture, and built the arena. Later, she bought the ten acres next to her and had the trees cut down to make more pasture land. She then got married had children, and as her daughter began to show, she began to open up her barn to students and boarders. She thought it was a great opportunity for her to use her skill and knowledge to help others with their love of horses. Hidden Pond gives beginner to advanced lessons, goes to shows local and away, has camps over the summer, does special outings, and has clinics at the farm.

A little history about Kim Rodden?
She got her first horse when she was twelve and has been hooked ever since. She has IMG_4095-w500-h500ridden and shown Western, but jumping is her real love; she says there is nothing like it just being you, your horse, and the times. Sher and her dad would load up the trailer with the horses and head to shows weekend after weekend with her trainer, Wayne Lowrey. She had the greatest experience going to England and riding there, and some of the best times of her life were either on a horse or in the truck going to horse shows. Her daughter now shows and is successful in the children’s hunters, but they have a jumper at home being trained for her to start showing.

What makes Waxhaw/Monroe the ideal location for your barn and training operation?
I chose Monroe because I love the country. It’s a ways out there, and some people think it’s too far, but I don’t want people and houses around me. I love seeing the trees and pasture land. It’s starting to build up a little out my way, but it is still nice and quiet.

IMG_4092-w500-h500What are some fond showing memories?
Some of my most favorite memories are the times when my dad and I were traveling. That time with him was priceless. I didn’t always have the best horses in the beginning, but that was fine because it made me into the rider she is today. Anyone can ride a dead broke horse that does everything for you. I did end up with some fabulous horses that I won a lot on. For instance, one of my jumpers, Gatsby, was one of the winningest horses in Ocala. Another great showing memory is when I got her first pony and took him to her grandma’s for Christmas. There was a ton of snow on the ground, and I will remember that forever like it was just yesterday. I have also made many great friends through showing, and though horse friends go away for a while, you always seem to cross paths again later in life.

What’s it like heading to shows on weekends with young riders?
Shows have always been fun for me. Loading up a bunch of teenage girls and preteens make them even more fun. I think it’s great to see what I’ve taught them to come out and to watch them excel in the classes they are showing in; it brings back a lot of memories.

If you could offer one piece of advice to a young rider, what would it be?IMG_4096-w500-h500
My advice to kids is to have confidence in themselves and ride like they know how to ride and to be patient because nothing is going to go or happen as quickly as you want it to.

What are some ideal traits you look for in your horses?
I mostly looks for honesty in my horses. I want a horse that tries no matter what and that won’t flip out on you. The best horse I ever had wasn’t flashy like everyone wanted but was very honest; I went to try him and ran him right into an oxer, but he came back and jumped it even better. I also prefer geldings over mares, but that doesn’t keep me from looking at mares.

What makes Hidden Ponds horses special?
Hidden Pond horses are special because they all have a great brain. Some, especially the mares, can be sassier than others, but that makes better riders out of my students – they are not allowed to get off just because the horse is being sassy. They have to ride through it. I use the more broken horses for beginners and the more advanced horses for the more advanced riders. I also doesn’t over use the horses, so they don’t ring sour and stay sound.

What traits do you look for in your teams and riders?
I want my riders to have a goal, to have the desire to reach that goal, and to work hard for IMG_4091-w500-h500it. If it was easy, everyone would be doing it.

What are some funny stories from your earlier riding years?
The funniest stories from my earlier riding years are some of the dumb and unsafe things I would do with her horses. I would get on bareback, no halter, no helmet, jump, and switch horses while trotting. Now a mom, I realize how unsafe those things were, but I would probably do it all over again.

What are a few details about some of your horses?
The oldest horse I have in the barn is my jumper Rafferty. He is 23, and I am trying to keep him fit so he will stay sound. He loves people and is always sticking his head out to be petted or to get a cookie (he’s almost obnoxious about it). He is the old man and king of the barn; he gets brought in first and put out last, because otherwise he bites and goes after other horses. He goes out by himself, but he is so big he just reaches over the walk way. If he doesn’t get his way, he starts running outside or in his stall. He is one of my most favorite horses I have ever had. Hidden Pond also has a huge variety of different horses with all different personalities that make them as special as they are.