I had a truly magical and wonderful experience at Painted Bar Stables! No disappointment here!
My excitement and anticipation had been building for some time and my first ride with Erika (the owner) and her team of peeps and ponies (horses) exceeded all my expectations!
I booked my reservation for the Full Moon ride that day and received my confirmation promptly. I arrived 10-15 minutes early as advised and was warmly welcomed by Erika who impressed me immediately with her energetic, larger than life personality and calm, confidant, professional demeanor... She clearly loves what she does! Right away she made feel like I was part of her special family... She is a consummate host and professional... A natural!
Only now, in writing this review do I realize how tirelessly attentive she was and how skilled in her art and craft... particularly in matching horses with riders to optimize a positive experience for all... Hitting the sweet spot between safety, adventure and skill (self-esteem) building!
We started off gently.. 10 people on 10 horses easing our way away from the buildings and the barns, the paved roads and the paid lights... deepening ourselves into dream into night. As we came around the outside edge of the furthermost line of fence we were met by a spirited group of unsaddled horses running along with us kicking and jumping in the moonlight... A most awesome sight!
There was a woman riding bareback just in front of me named Olivia who was kind enough to give me gentle instruction, making me feel looked after step by step.
I was amazed by the varied terrain I got to experience on my 1 hour trial ride, which really felt timeless. We rode through paths at times wide and narrow, through streams moderate to shallow, galloped through open fields into woodlands hallowed... Up inclines steep, down ravines deep... there were logs to step over and branches to bow beneath... And with the music of Erika's voice prompting us from lead we all played hide and seek with "The Hunters Full Moon"!
Magical, marvelous... I can't wait to do it again, sharing it with everyone I love!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.