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“Best place to ride!”

Red Ridge Ranch Riding Stable
Reviewed October 30, 2013 via mobile

We have been visiting Red Ridge Ranch once or twice a year for the past 7 years. My daughter has been able to ride her favorite horse there each time we visit, which I think is absolutely amazing! The trail is absolutely beautiful, the horses are very well looked after and the rides are a very fair price. The haunted hayride at Halloween is great as well. Remember, this is a ranch and the "office" is in the front of a barn, so expect a little dust as dirt while you get to know the horses!

Thank QStat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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45 - 49 of 50 reviews

Reviewed October 21, 2013

Our family of 4 were keen to go horseback riding on our trip to the Dells this summer and we spent alot of time considering where to go by looking at reviews on different web sites - to be honest none of the reviews were that great.

We selected Red Ridge as the reviews tended to suggest the riding was good even if the service was not so great. This was pretty much our experience although I would say the lack of customer service made the ride much less enjoyable than it could have been with a bit more effort.

We found the place quite easily and the horses we saw in the paddock looked in good shape which seemed a good sign. Once inside the front gate though, it was unclear where we needed to go or who we needed to see as there was no signage to indicate a reception area etc. We walked to the entrance to the barn and waited for maybe 10 minutes before the lady who was working in the barn decided to come and speak to us - although she knew we were there. She was doing chores so we thought well fair enough putting the horses first maybe?

The area at the front of the barn seems to serve as a reception with a messy desk, some hats and a drinks maching that looked like a health hazard. The whole thing looked really unprofessional this is where we started to feel a bit less confident- it was a mess. The lady asked what ride we wanted told us to fill in the release form - we had to hunt for these ourselves on the sawdust / cat covered desk. Riding hats (or maybe bike helmets in some cases?) were available but were in a poor state of repair. I know they are not always used in the States but no British riding stable would let riders venture out with out a good quality riding hat, so that was a bit of a concern. We were just told use em or not.

We were offered the souveniers that were for sale (tshirts / horse shoes etc), but it wasnt a hard sell as some reviews had suggested. We bought the horse food which was just as well, more of that later.....

I can related to the comments about horses not being paired well with riders. We were a party of 4, my husband is an experienced rider, I and our two children of 9 and 6 are novices. We were asked about the children's riding experience but not our own. My husband was given a big horse that liked to bite the other horses and was told to keep it away from the other horses. I was given a horse we were told was very sensitive and needed a light hand or it might run away a bit (sorry what?) My son who is 9 was given a horse that needed to be kicked repeatedly to even get it going and my 6 year old daughter was given a horse as big as my own and had to sit on an adult saddle. She is only little and could not reach the stirrups and no provision was made to assist with this - despite my husband suggesting she might put her feet into the stirrup leathers as a possible solution. The in-charge lady asekd if my daughter wanted manage her own horse (at 6 and having never been on a horse) but seeing she was so unstable we asked for her to be led.
Despite all this, things started well and we had a nice ride out across the farm land and we were able to manage the horses well enough despite the health warnings. However half an hour in my daughter was struggling, she couldnt post as she had no stirrups and was finding holding the reins and staying balanced hard work and quite tiring. The guide then took the reins from her. Now she had nothing to hold onto only the saddle horn and started to worry about falling off. The guide was leading her horse but was not really paying attention to where it was going and proceeded to lead her through low hanging tree branches twice almost knocking her off the horse. on the second occasion and she cried for the last 15 minutes of the ride. Not good!!

At the end of the ride we tried to get her down off the horse as the mounting block was in use by the next party to go out and I have to say it was a good thing we had those horse treats as the horse was clearly expecting to eat and needed to be bribed to hold still while we got her down - no help was offered with dismounting by the guide. Needless to say we didnt tip!

Lovely route
Small group size
Full hour long ride

Service and attitude of the staff is not fab
Appropriate provision is not really made for younger children
Administration arrangements are poor.
Portaloos smelled horrible we didnt use them
No food and drink available but maybe just as well.

4  Thank JoGuy1750
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 26, 2013

I decided to have a girls horseback ride outing and selected Red Ridge based on an excellent prior experience here. For background, we had one experienced rider, one occasional rider and a newbie. The scenery is beautiful and the price is fair, but that is where it ends. First, I was appalled at how rude the manager behaved towards customers and her staff. Highly inappropriate to tell your staff that they are wasting time and not doing their job by yelling it across the barn/staging area. The pressure from the manager to buy her $5 ziplock bag of horse treats was obnoxious. I do not appreciate being looked at and scolded with "You don't want to feed my horses?" Uh, I believe I said no and perhaps I had a reason for this. I succumbed just because this woman was such a witch. The ride was fine, but our leader was constantly correcting people and telling them slow down, hurry up, more room, less room, etc. There didn't seem to be much thought or time put into people's riding abilities and pairing them with appropriate horses. I have done rides across the US, including in the mountains, and never experienced a leader like this. Nothing positive until we returned and she wanted to tell us about all the great things they sell and tours they host. The horses seemed well cared for but out of control. This included one horse galloping away through the crowd after a person dismounted. This was a dangerous situation and could have ended badly. I can only assume the horses are overworked. It's really too bad but I don't think I'll return here. There are other country stables and I'll be checking them out.

2  Thank Weltz5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 18, 2013

My husband, myself and our granddaughter wanted an advanced (as advertised) ride. We called on the phone and this crabby, cranky, rude woman answered. She had no time to help us with making a reservation, pricing, or how to get to the stables. Unbelievably rude! We found the stable and knew instantly when we heard her talking who she was. My husband and granddaughter went for a ride and I stayed back. While waiting in the shade I heard this woman tell her employees that everyone needed to come up with more "money makers".
Overall, we were not impressed. Horses were good but there are other stables to go to that are not rude at all.

2  Thank seetheworld010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 28, 2013

After reading reviews, we chose to drive the 20+ miles to Red Ridge Riding Stable rather than use riding stables in the Dells. Our choice was based on the fact that we wanted a trail ride through forests and nature and were not interested in animated or manufactured scenery, which is part of some of the other rides we reviewed. We called and were told that reservations were not necessary, that rides would start whenever 'we showed up.' All true! The stables were easy to find and we were not disappointed with our choice! Red Ridge has a stable of over 100 horses, so they have horses for every type of rider. My husband and son had never ridden before; my daughter and I had. We all were given appropriate horses. The trail ride was through forests, by a river and fields, very lovely. Truly felt out in the country, which is what we wanted. Instructions were clear for the 'newbies,' and those of us who wanted to were able to trot some. It was clear to me that the owners and workers knew the horses and took good care of them. We are very glad we chose Red Ridge and would go there again if in the area.

Thank Epidoc96
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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