I know Ridgecrest pretty well, as I lived in Riverside for over 35 years. My DH liked to go to the off-road races in Ridgecrest. I moved to the Kingman area @ the beginning of 2012. Mojave Valley is ( I think) warmer than here, but w/all the tourists year-round ( Laughlin/Las Vegas) area, there should be more job opportunities & there are rodeos in both places. There are plenty of horses around-I bought my newest mare in Mojave Valley in November-it was a 2 hour drive for me. Something to beware of though is the rampant epidemic of illegal drugs & it may take some getting used to to seeing folks walking around w/a gun on their belt. I'm getting used to the state & I love having the acreage & the gas & vehicle registrations are much cheaper! The sales tax is the same or even a little higher. These are tough times & if family is willing to help you get a start in life, why not give it a shot?