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Beware - horseback riding incident

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Montreal, Canada
posts: 3
Beware - horseback riding incident

Hi all,

I booked a horseback riding trip in Montezuma at Montezuma Eco Tours. We asked if it was possible to book a tour at 3pm. At first the guy (Alex, the manager) seemed reluctant but finally he accomodated us. There were 3 of us and none of us had good experience in horseback riding, but it didnt seem to matter.

I'm left with the impression that safety was the least important concern when the manager accepted to book the trip.

-We weren't taught any horseback riding basics. They just told us that to go left or right you pull the cord left or right and to stop you pull both. No security guidelines

-We didnt have helmets

-We went through very tortuous, steep, rocky and muddy trails. I would say expert trails. The horses seemed to be afraid and so was I.

-The tide was up so we had to go through the waves at some points, which seemed to frighten the horses a bit more.

I had a bad feeling from the beginning. And at the end of Playa Grande we had to cross a pile of debris that were washed by the sea... wooden logs, rubbish etc. Very deep and hard to cross. The horses didnt want to go there at first and turned around. Then the guide tied all the horses one on front of the other and lead the way through the debris. At this point, my horse panicked and stood up. I fell on the side and the horse fell on my right thigh. I was lucky it was not broken, but I have an hematoma in the muscle so I can forget surfing, hiking or snorkeling for the rest of my trip. After, the two other horses panicked and one girl fell on her bum and hurt herself too.

I didnt want to climb back on the horse so we had to walk back 4km. and since we left late it was dark when we came back. They could not send a quad to get us or anything.

So not a good experience at all. And we could not get more than a third of our money back. No sorry or anything.

So a piece of advice, before booking tourist trips ask about the conditions and go to more than one place.

San Jose, Costa Rica
Destination Expert
for Costa Rica
posts: 39,991
1. Re: Beware - horseback riding incident

Thank you for your post and sorry about the bad experience...hard to deal in tours when involved animals...no way any body can guarantee anything...

SORRY again!

roadadvisor

San Jose, Costa Rica
posts: 3,527
2. Re: Beware - horseback riding incident

Well that is not a good experience. At the very least they should´ve given you safety instructions and provide you with helmets. Thanks for sharing

San Jose, Costa Rica
posts: 444
reviews: 17
3. Re: Beware - horseback riding incident

You didn't know how to ride a horse, right? - how could you tell horse was 'afraid'? The company provided a service and when you changed your mind on the way back they are suppose to return your money?

Sorry that you had a bad experience but I don't see what the company did wrong. They provided a service, even gave you a partial refund because of something that was not their fault - and still you post a negative message about them.

What did they do wrong?

guanacaste
posts: 2,928
reviews: 31
4. Re: Beware - horseback riding incident

Sorry to hear about the experience.

Montreal, Canada
posts: 3
5. Re: Beware - horseback riding incident

Well it apparently was afraid since it stood up and fell.

As for what the company did wrong it is all in the text: no security guidelines no helmets and dangerous conditions according to the guide himself.

I didnt feel safe from the beginning and something bad happened. That's all i wanted to share thank you

6. Re: Beware - horseback riding incident

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Costa Rica
posts: 20,374
reviews: 24
7. Re: Beware - horseback riding incident

While I tend to agree with tikivillas, I do know some tour companies that offer helmets. But a helmet will often not be enough to keep you safe and whole. I do hope your bad bruise did not keep you from having a good time.

Horses are complicated animals with their own hopes and desires and fears. If, for instance, they go the same place, the same way, every day -- and then something is different, they may not like it.

They all have their little "quirks" also - I was recently on a horse that obviously did not like walking in water or heavy mud while others in the group went right through.

It may depend also on the rider - if a horse "stand up" - it could be for many reasons.

I'm really sorry you had this unfortunate experience. I have been on some pretty tricky trails on horses so I know it is not always smooth going. It can be really frightening to be on a horse if you don't know what you are doing.

I hope some of the people from that area will chime in. I know Yellabrick has horses so maybe can comment. I would also like to hear from some local people about this organization since there was another post with a complaint about them - that time, about surfing. It would be good to know if this company is actually OK or if we should stay away.

San Jose, Costa Rica
Destination Expert
for Costa Rica
posts: 39,991
8. Re: Beware - horseback riding incident

My amiga Hattie...please post the name of companies that offer Helmets for a horse back riding tours...good for all of us to know...I never heard of any company doing that...

In my case very few times of my life as a Travel Agent ever recommend a horse tour...most of the time people expect way to much....some times they do not know anything about a horse or they know way to much...

Also is good for future people that are looking for that kind of tour...to please look for companies that are certified by ICT...that means that the ICT certification also includes the inspection by Health Dpt and safety protocols and also the aproval of MAG our Dpt of Agriculture.

roadadvisor

Costa Rica
posts: 20,374
reviews: 24
9. Re: Beware - horseback riding incident

There are two that come to mind: Guachipelin and Heliconias Lodge. I am sure there are others - but - I think you are right that most tour companies don't offer helmets.

Montreal, Canada
posts: 3
10. Re: Beware - horseback riding incident

Thanks all for the posts. Hope it helps others to be more careful than I was and perhaps prevent other accidents