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Trail Riding at Shaker Village

By Lesley Ward

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

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The Near Side - Trail Riding at Shaker Village
Bridget and Jasper on the trail. Photo by Lesley Ward.
On Memorial Day, my friend Bridget and I packed up my horses Jasper and Tee in my trailer in the morning and headed off to Shaker Village, near Harrodsburg, KY, for a trail ride with my neighbor Judy and her horse, Luna. Shaker Village (www.shakervillageky.org) is a 3,000 acre National Historic Landmark about 14 miles from my house. It’s one of my favorite places to ride.  There are more than 33 miles of horse riding trials and 15 miles of carriage-friendly trails there. You can bring your horse for a few hours or for a weekend. There’s a barn for your horses and an Inn for you.

And—it only costs $7 per person to ride there. That’s a bargain!

After saying hello to the other trail riders who were tacking up nearby, we headed off for the Little Texas trail. Little Texas is my favorite trail because it covers a variety of terrain. There are hills to scramble up, flat fields to canter over, woods to wind through and creeks to splash in.

We’re lucky that Tee, Jasper and Luna get along great, because we seem to bump into each other a lot on the trail! And when Arabian Luna and Thoroughbred Tee snort at a creek crossing and refuse to get their hooves wet, Quarter Horse cross Jasper leads them through like a trooper. He’s a wonderful trail horse. His only problem? He views trail rides as a non-stop salad bar. He’s always grabbing grass and leaves.

We bumped into a few western riders, a dad and his daughter riding English, a few trail riders on gaited horses and a lone endurance rider on a very pretty Arabian mare. He had all the long-distance gear, including a sponge on a string and a packet of maps. He tried to convince us to enter an endurance ride he’s organizing in September. We’ll see. Two hours in the saddle is enough for me. I’m a bit sore today and my horses were very tired last night!

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