Our Dedicated Team
Samantha is a former U.S. Army journalist. She moved to Nevada in 2008 and quickly fell in love with the Silver State and its wild horses. Samantha created the Nevada Discovery Ride project to promote wild horse adoption. She completed a 500 mile ride in 2013 and a 1,100+ mile ride in 2016.
When she isn't riding, Samantha is working on Sagebrush Rider Magazine, sharing equestrian news and stories from around the state. She lives outside Reno, and her herd includes a mustang (Sage), a reg. APHA gelding (Geo), one dog (Blue), and 2 cats (Finnegan and Tomas). She is a member of the Long Riders' Guild and various equestrian associations.
Bella was the canine member of the NDR team.
She scaled mountains, swam in the ocean, romped through the forest, and crossed deserts. She racked up thousands of miles during both NDR journeys. She loved the desert, especially chasing jackrabbits and lizards. Bella passed away in October 2018 at the age of 11, having completed her final camping trip just one week prior.
Sage is a 11 year old mustang from the Callaghan Herd Management Area, north of Austin, Nevada. He was rounded up by the BLM in 2009 when he was 2 years old, and went into the Carson City Correctional Center Saddle-Horse Training Program in December of 2010.
Samantha adopted Sage at the Correctional Center's auction in February 2011 when he was 4 years old. Since then, Sage and Samantha have been busy riding all over Nevada. Sage carried the state flag in the Nevada Day parade and has appeared at community events to teach kids about wild horses. He has proven to be a calm, steady, and brave horse. Sage is an exemplary mustang, and an ambassador for other captured mustangs in need of a home!
Ryan has, perhaps, the hardest job of the NDR team. He is the "pack mule" for each long ride -- driving ahead with hundreds of pounds of horse feed and hundreds of gallons of water. He also helps scout trails, set up and tear down camp, runs the chuck wagon, and assists with trail emergencies.
Ryan is an expert on Nevada, having spent many years traveling the back roads while working for the Desert Research Institute. He is also a knowledgeable historian of the American West, with a Ph.D. from the University of Nevada, Reno. Ryan proposed to Samantha on the 4th day of the 1st NDR. They eloped after finishing the ride and are now living happily ever after!