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Horseback Riding Trails
Have you ever wanted to go horseback riding, but didn’t know where to go? Or perhaps you have your own horses but don’t have room in your back yard to ride. Look no further than your neighborhood state park. Five of Alabama’s beautiful, spacious state parks currently have or will soon have horseback riding trails. Instead of exploring on foot, climb onto the back of a horse and go for a ride.
Riding Trails Available
Oak Mountain State Park, located 15 miles south of Birmingham, offers both horses on site to ride and 10 miles of trails that you can ride on with your own horse. The stables located within the park offer trail rides 45 minutes and 90 minutes long, or pony rides. A variety of riding lessons are also offered. Boarding spaces for horses are available to board your horse. Contact the stables at 205-620-3575 for prices, ride availability, and boarding information.
The Jeff Reed Horse Trail, a 10-mile horseback riding trail, is now open at Wind Creek State Park, located on Lake Martin near Alexander City, Alabama. The trail takes riders through a vast forest of mixed hard wood, pines, ferns, along a stream and views of Lake Martin. The park does not offer horses for rent. Sixteen campsites allow you to camp out with your horse.
Lake Guntersville State Park boasts a 16-mile horse trail. The path follows the terrain, varying from steep inclines to lazy knolls. It passes remnants of old home places with chimneys still standing, what remains of a grist mill, and rock stacked in piles having been cleared from fields once farmed. It is recommended to carry water for horses as the trail does not guarantee a source of refreshment. The cool waters of the Guntersville Reservoir flank the trail. However, it is not always easily accessible. Heavy rains make it difficult for horses to tread the soil, marring up instead. An ample parking area heads the trail that affords riders a place for primitive camping. Horses can be highlined to nearby trees while at rest. Bathroom facilities are located directly across the street from the horse trail at the Town Creek Campground, where additional campsites are also available.
The Horse Trails at Lake Guntersville State Park will be closed from November 20, 2010 through January 2011. The Guntersville horse trails will reopen in early February.