Monday, August 26, 2019

Horseback Riding in Utah: 8 Incredible Trails to Get You Started!

Horseback Riding in Utah: 8 Incredible Trails to Get You Started!

Horseback riding and travel are inevitably linked. Once upon a time, they were one and the same, in the old wild times of the West. Now, we travel through other methods, but that doesn’t mean we’ve lost the desire and the will to get back to nature and go for a good ride. That being said, some of the best places to ride require a bit a of travel to get out to, unless you’re lucky enough for them to be close to home that is, and it’s important to plan ahead when looking for vacation or riding destinations. And, no rider or western loving cowboy at heart can do better than the rustic trails of Utah. Utah is the kind of place where one can see canyons, rivers, mountains, prairies, and more, and all on the same trail. It’s a true dream for lovers of travel and adventure.

When in need of a good ride, and maybe hankering for a setting reflective of the good old days of horseback travel in the Wild West, look no further than these eight amazing trails in Utah.

a horse and rider in the sunset

1. Old West Outfitters offers a wide variety of horse-riding fun, including cattle drives and gorgeous views of Southern Utah to explore. Go on your own, or with groups of up to 12 to experience six different trails of local National Parks and locales across Navajoland. Some locations of note are the Navajoland ride that tours the remnants of the ancient Anasazi peoples of the area, and the Canyon de Chelly. This service comes with meals, lodging, and transport to and from the location for about $1500 - $2900 per head.

man helping a young girl learn to ride horses

2. Zion National Park is a wonder to behold all on its own. But, with the Zion Ponderosa Ranch Resort, and on horseback, the experience is far more than just one to remember. The area that is now Zion National Park was first discovered by Native Americans and later explored by Mormon pioneers. It’s a place right out of history. Today, the park finds itself as one of the top horseback riding trails in the nation.

Young children under eight years old are not allowed on the regular horse rides, but resort wranglers offer special guided tours for young riders as well – promising a safe and fun ride for kids with a bit of the west in their hearts.

a dog alongside horseback riders

3. Paria River Ranch brings the added benefit of being allowed to bring a horse of your own, if you are so inclined, or choosing to take part in a guided adventure of the local area.

The ranch is located right near the Paria River, and the bottom of the Grand Staircase Escalante Nation Monument in Utah. They’re within 50 miles of Kanab, Utah, and a wide variety of rustic western trails and sights are on display for riders to remember. Don’t forget to bring a camera, because these are some sights you won’t want to soon forget!

a single-file group of horseback riders

4. Jacob Lake Trail Rides shows off the surrounding Kaibab Plateau, a short distance from the North Rim of the Grand Canyon itself and offers an enthralling experience for riders new and experienced alike.

Again, riders under the age of eight are not allowed on horseback, but Jacob Lake Trail Rides offer old fashioned wagon rides as well, promising something for the entire family. Prices range from $30 for a half-hour ride, per person, up to two hours for $60 per head.

5. Allen’s Trail Rides bring riders storied western locations such as Peekaboo, a thrilling slot-canyon trail great for a bit of a spookier and more enclosed atmosphere, the Kanab Movie Fort, Diana’s Throne, and Pughe’s Canyon. Riders can book trips out for as short as an hour, or as long as several days ride out into the rugged west.

horseback riders navigating switchbacks

6. Red Rock Ride brings travelers the unique experience of a long-haul ride, offering seven-day guided rides for vacationers to enjoy. The tour will bring riders through locations such as Zion, the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, and the Paria and Red Canyons of Utah. Reserve now if interested, because reservations take place in the Spring and the Fall, and typical book a full year or more in advance. It’ll cost you approximately $2295 per person, and include a variety of niceties and accommodations, such as shuttle services to and from Las Vegas, and meals for the whole duration.

7. Duck Creek Horse Rides takes travelers through the peaceful Dixie Nation Forest out near Duck Creek Village on Cedar Mountain. Dixie National Forest stretches for a whopping 170 acres across southern Utah, taking up an area of nearly two million acres in all, and is the largest National Forest in the state. The location promises canyons, forests, rivers, and plains. All the best of Utah can be found here.

guides leading horses with new riders

8. Mystic River Outdoor Adventures can be found north of Glendale on Hwy 89. Besides being a prime place for horseback riding, the crew at Outdoor Adventures offer eight-person carriage rides alongside the river, and more, such as zip-lining over a 1600-foot drop, and shaved ice to cool down from that Utah heat!

three generations of women on horseback

One thing is clear, wherever riders choose to travel, Utah is the place to be. All eight of these travel locations offer scenic views, many with lodging and resort-like stays present, and promise a grand time for the individual and family.

Nowhere else in the world brings such rustic and storied location to life quite like the horse riding trails of Utah. It’s a place no rider should miss in their lives, and the people are ready and welcoming of visitors to their great state. Lovers of travel, horse riding, and the rugged west will find a place to remember upon the riding trails of Utah, that’s for sure.