Horseback Riding at Red Horse Mountain Ranch
Horseback Riding Vacations
The horse is without a doubt front and center at Red Horse Mountain Ranch and horseback riding during your vacation is an everyday experience if you choose to do so. Our riding program is designed to be instructional, exhilarating, relaxing, and memorable experience for everyone. The ranch has approximately 100 horses on the ranch during the summer. Before you arrive you will be scheduled with a horse and saddle for your entire stay based on riding preferences you provide. Each day on the ranch, riders will have at least two opportunities for western-style horseback riding which includes advanced riding, scenic rides, horseback lessons, all-day or lunch rides, kids horseback rides, and family rides. All guests will be asked to complete an orientation and walking ride during the first day of their vacation, unless they are returning guests. This gives our wranglers a chance to orient you to the barn and give you a chance to meet your horse and make any adjustments to your saddle and riding equipment for the rest of the week.
Horseback riding is only available to those riders under 240 pounds or athletically built. Horseback trail riding is available to ages 3 & up. Kids, ages 3-6, may be led by one of our wranglers depending on their ability. Riders with questions regarding medical considerations should contact the ranch and/or have a doctor’s note prior to arriving. Advanced riding is available at Red Horse Mountain Ranch once the rider passes the advanced test. Each rider should fill out the Activity Information Form when making their reservations. If you have any questions regarding the horseback riding policies, please contact the Ranch Manager at (888) 689-9680 ext 2.
Dude Ranchers’ Association Horse Safety
Red Horse Mountain Ranch has been a Horse Safety Program member since it’s beginning. The program is a reflection of a proactive approach by the Dude Ranchers’ Association to promote safe horse programs. The program provides an educational opportunity through two seminars. These seminars promote continual evaluation of safety procedures and skills.
This program is a reflection of the member ranches and our responsibility to give guest riders enjoyable horseback riding vacations along with exercising the highest degree of care. Each certified ranch must be re-certified every three years. The owner, operator or manager must attend both seminars to complete or update current certification. Be sure and look for the DRA Horse Safety Logo before you book your dude ranch vacation.
Your Own Horse for the Week
Monday Morning Horse Orientation Ride
On Monday morning, all first-time guests, including children, will have an orientation at the Barn, followed by a scenic ride. At the orientation, you will learn the Barn Rules and the basics of controlling your horse. You have been matched up with a horse and saddle for the week and we want to make sure you are comfortable with the match we’ve made for you. If you have any questions about your horse, feel free to ask a wrangler. Arrive 15 minutes early if you need to borrow boots and helmets from the Tack Barn. Slick sole boots are required; we prefer them to be pull-on style boots. Helmets are available and must be worn by anyone under the age of 13. We highly recommend helmets to be worn by all riders, especially for more advanced rides.
Adult Scenic Horseback Riding
Scenic rides are offered every day. These are relaxed, walking rides that take you through beautiful scenery, over variable terrain. Scenic rides typically follow most of the same trails the advanced horseback rides do, just at a leisurely pace so don’t worry, you’re not missing any views! If you are concerned about heights, please talk to the barn manager the day before so you can be informed of what the terrain will be like the next day.
Kids Program Horseback Rides
Children, ages 3 – 10, are welcomed to participate in the Kids Trail Ride. The little “buckaroos” (ages 3-6) will be led by a wrangler. The rides are geared towards the age group involved. Little cowboy and cowgirl boots are available to borrow, but parents beware, kids usually want to keep their boots at the end of the week for souvenirs and we’ll need them for another adventure. We also require each kid to wear a horseback riding helmet which will be provided for their stay. Once each child has met their horse and is fit to their saddle we will venture off into the ranch valley and progress to hills and creeks. Horseback riding inherently offers lessons in focus, assertiveness and self-awareness. All ages may join the Kids Trail Ride if space is available.
Advanced Horseback Riding & The Advanced Test
The Advanced Horseback Ride is a combination of walking, trotting, and cantering and is offered a number of times throughout the week. This horseback ride is absolutely exhilarating and, as always, your safety is most important. Even an accomplished rider will tell you that every horse is different and it takes a little time for you to meet. We make sure you and your horse are ready to kick it up a notch before heading out on the trail. All riders wishing to do the Advanced Ride, regardless of riding experience, will be tested by our wranglers prior. Talk with your experienced wranglers to see if you could use a few pointers to advance your trail riding experience. The Advanced Rides are only available in the mornings, since typical afternoon heat during the summer is too warm for the horses to do advanced riding.
Family Horseback Riding
Daily Scenic Horseback Riding
You’ll have 300,000 acres with miles of trails, a knowledgeable wrangler, a trusty horse, and the ability to go wherever your skills can take you during our horseback riding vacations! Every morning the wranglers have your horse saddled and waiting for you when you decide to ride. The wranglers will make sure you are comfortable and properly equipped before you get on your horse. If you need a few pointers, don’t hesitate to ask your wrangler for a little help. Please remember that your safety and the horses’ safety are always kept in mind. We have a variety of riding trails, all of which leave the valley floor and climb into the surrounding mountains. Enjoy riding through pastures, along wide trails, on open hillsides, and through narrow, wooded paths. We recommend you bring your camera. Each scenic trail ride will last between 2-4 hours.
The All Day Horseback Ride
On certain days of the week, a lunch ride is also available. You will experience the backwoods, creek basins, and breathtaking views from ridge lines. A lunch will be made for you to take in your saddle bags. Be prepared for this ride. Wear layers; the weather may not be the same atop the ridges as it is down in the valley. Typically, most all-day rides climb and descend a total of 5,000 feet in elevation. The ride takes approximately 6 hours, returning you back to the ranch in the mid-afternoon.
Horseback Riding Lessons
Our goal while you’re here at the ranch is for you to become comfortable with your horse, and that’s why we offer horseback riding lessons at no extra charge. You’ll only need to sign up. Talk with your wrangler at the lesson and let them know what you’re wanting to work on. Horseback riding lessons are a great way to improve your skill and work on your horsemanship during your week stay at the ranch.