Have you always dreamed of riding through the untamed wilderness in a western saddle? Then I assure you, Canada is the place where you want to go! My name is Marlies and in this blogpost I take you with me on one of the most beautiful rides of my life.
Coming from Calgary you’ve got a beautiful drive ahead of you to the ranch. Once leaving the suburbs you’ll drive over windy roads, and the Rocky Mountains are coming closer and closer towards you. I did this drive in August, it was hot and dry. Apparently, it’s even more stunning during early spring and the beginning of fall. All kinds of autumn colors welcome you and the air is fresh and crisp. Mosquitos are not there yet, or long gone. What else do you want?
When arriving at the Ranch you feel like being in a Wild Western movie. It’s a remote place and don’t expect much luxury. The toilet is just an out-house but does its job! You will be warmly welcomed by Jacquie. She will show you around and make sure you bring water and snacks. I signed up for the 3,5h Pringle Mountain Ridge Ride and I was excited to meet my horse for the trail!
They have a total of 22 horses, and they were all eating their grains when I walked into the corral. They looked very healthy and happy and got lots of space to roam around when they are not out riding. I got this cute Arab chestnut called Bean. He was the newest guy in the group and is very eager to work. Sounds like a good match!
Since it was hot, we took it easy. The ride was mainly walking, but that didn’t mean you got to just chill-out. You had to ride! The trail takes you through the wilderness and you have to guide your horse through a dense forest. Besides that, you are climbing a steep hill. Even though I couldn’t see far due to the trees, it was clear we were going to be rewarded with an amazing view. When the biggest climb was over, we stopped and gave the horses a break. They are all wearing halters underneath the bridles, so it’s easy to just tie them to a tree.
It was so quiet up there. Coming from the busy city, this was a very nice change of scenery. Obviously being accompanied by horses, who were calm and enjoying their break, made it even better.
After their well-deserved rest, we got back on and went down the hill for a little bit. That’s when the forest started opening and this amazing viewpoint appeared. The fact that it was a beautiful day made it even better. The mountain peaks look even better when covered in a crystal blue sky. Our guide, Cody made sure everybody had their “picture-time” and the horses patiently posed.
Happy and satisfied we returned to the ranch after this beautiful 3,5h hours trail ride. Even though I really liked this relaxing ride, this is just a taste of what you can get at Saddle Peaks Trail Rides.
The multi day trail ride through the Rocky Mountains is the real deal and I’m pretty sure it’s a dream for many people. For three or four days you get to discover the famous Rocky Mountains in a spectacular way. Since you are on horseback, you get to see the most remote and stunning places. Unfortunately, I could not join, but a German girl who did shared her experience with us.
The basecamp is about one hour north of the ranch. It consists of wooden cabins and paddocks for the horses. You arrive early in the morning. Jacquie and Dave are the owners of the ranch and will show you around camp. Most likely, one of their children Cody or Chyanne will be there as well to help during your trip. Besides cabins to sleep in, there is also a kitchen cabin where you will enjoy Jacquie’s homemade dinners.
Before you start the trip, Jacquie and Dave will need some information from you, like height, weight, and riding experience. This way, the chances are high you get a horse that you like and that will suit you.
At 10:30 am we were ready to start our first tour! Together with the horses, we drove 20 minutes away from the camp to a parking lot. We got the horses ready and packed our saddlebags with snacks, water, and lunch. All provided by Jacquie! This first day you get to ride for 5 to 6 hours. A stunning tour through the mountains with great views and great company!
Every day you will get a different tour. Usually, the second day is the longest with 6 to 7 hours of riding. The tours will take you to places you can only reach on a horse or by hiking very far. During the rides you and the horses get multiple breaks. You stop at rivers, to let the horses drink and you get to enjoy a moment of stillness.
Basically, you don’t have to worry about a thing when you join this amazing 3 days Rocky Mountain trip. Jacquie and Dave will provide you with all the information you need. They will give you a packing list and make sure you always have enough to eat and drink. The horses are healthy and well-trained. Their tack fits them well and the saddles are comfortable. After a long day in the saddle, you get to enjoy dinner together with the group at the fireplace. When your stomach is full and your eyes are getting tired, you will head to your wooden cabin for a good sleep. It’s a unique experience and the girl who I interviewed, called it the best part of her entire Canada trip. I can only imagine! Which horse-person doesn’t dream of a trail riding vacation like this?
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