Where are you located?
We are located 5 minutes from downtown Truckee, 15 minutes from Northstar, 30 minutes from downtown Reno, and about 1.5 hours from Sacramento. Just 2 miles off of I-80, we are easy to get to from just about anywhere in Tahoe.
When are you open?
We are open year round. In general, we offer lessons and trail rides between 9 and 5. In the winter we are open a bit shorter hours and the summer hours are a bit longer.
Do you have a weight limit?
We try our best to accommodate everyone that is interested in horseback riding. However, please let us know if anyone in your group is over 220 pounds so we can make sure we have the correct horse ready.
FYI - horses can only carry about 20% of their body weight - with the average horse weight of about 1200 pounds this means that 240 pounds is the max for most of our horses (that includes a 20 pound saddle hence the 220 standard weight threshold). That said, we do have some big boys who tip the scales at 1500+ pounds so they are ok with weights up to 300 pounds.
Do you have an age limit?
The minimum age for lessons and pony rides is 4 years old.
For trail rides the minimum age is 7 years old. On trail rides all riders get their own horse so the younger rides are generally led by the guide horse - yes they will go out on the trail with you!
No matter the age, all participants must be respectful of the staff and horses. Disrespectful riders are dangerous riders and this behavior is not tolerated.
Do you allow double riding?
No. Everyone must have their own horse.
What is your cancellation policy?
All deposits are non-refundable. Camp must be cancelled at least one week in advance to avoid paying the balance. Trail rides must be cancelled 24 hours in advance otherwise they will be charged in full.
How much should I tip the guides and instructors?
That is up to you! We try our best to pay our staff well, but the cost of doing business in California, especially in the equine industry, is very high so we really do appreciate any gratuity paid to our staff directly. Some folks tip 20% of the ride total, others $20 per guide, while some others really are generous and tip up to $100 per guide.
When should I arrive?
Please arrive 15 minutes prior to your schedule ride time.
WHAT SHOULD WE WEAR?
For all equine activities, participants should wear closed toed shoes, long pants, and appropriate clothing for the weather. Loose clothing, purses, back-packs etc. are strongly discouraged as they can cause a safety issue.
I have never ridden before, what do you RECOMMEND?
For the very first timers, you really can't beat a trail ride to get the feel of being in the saddle. If you want to learn a bit more, a private lesson is another great way to get you moving.
I ride English, can i ride english on the trail?
Unfortunately, all trail rides must be taken in a western saddle. This is due to insurance stipulations.
Do you have helmets?
Yes, we offer helmets for the little ones and the adults.
I am interested in taking my little one to see the animals, is that ok?
Yes, visiting our critter camp is free of charge. Please just make sure to check in with a staff, sign a release of liability, and get a helmet for the little one.
CAn my child just do a day or two of camp?
Depending on the week, we can accommodate drop-ins or partial weeks. However, if the week is booked then this is not an option. If you want to guarantee your space, even if only for a few days, then you must book the whole week. We do not pro-rate fully booked camp weeks.
Is horseback riding dangerous?
While there is no easy answer, the simple answer is yes - it can be. We take safety very seriously in all of our activities and we have a very good track record for safe camps, lessons, and trail rides. While accidents do happen, most are minor.
If you are serious about horseback riding, you will come off your horse in your equine journey. The harder you push yourself, the higher the risk. You must understand and appreciate this risk in order to ride safley.
Do I have to sign a waiver of liability before riding?
Yes, all participants must sign a current release of liability.
Can I bring a water bottle or a backpack?
Even the lightest of backpacks can affect your balance and restrict shoulder movement, which are very important while riding. In addition, many packs have straps that can get snagged on the trail or the saddle which poses a safety risk. As for the water bottle, as long as riders hydrate before and after the ride, it is better not to bring a water bottle to rides under 2 hours.
For our rides 2 hours and over, the wranglers will have saddle bags and are more than happy to carry snacks, water and anything else you might need.
Should I bring my camera?
Again, anything bulky is generally not a good idea while riding. Many of our helmets have GoPro brackets which we encourage you to use. Cell phones in your front pocket are generally the way to go. Our wranglers are more than happy to take photos of you out on the trail and if you have an iPhone, they can airdrop photos to you. We strongly discourage texting, as riders should always be aware of their surroundings and holding onto their reins.