August 10, 2011 at 1:28 PM

Touring Santa Fe from the Back of a Horse

"Special Upcoming Event Sunday, Sept. 4"

By Susie Morgan

Hoof Prints in Santa Fe

Susie Morgan is a lifetime lover of horses, the outdoors and lives for adventures. She lives in Las Campanas, and is reconnecting with horses after working 27 years in New York City.

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This is a brilliant opportunity for out-of-town guests to see Santa Fe from a totally different perspective.  Reserve a horseback ride from the popular Bishops Lodge Stables, founded in 1918. 

Two families are here today; Amy from Illinois with her granddad, and Kayla from California visiting her aunt and uncle. All of us joined Wrangler Joaquin for a briefing before we headed out for a two-hour ride in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains.

I knew this was going to be a special ride when we rode through an arroyo and came upon three coyotes – all within 20 feet of us.  They were not moving away. Joaquin says they are known in his tribe as The Trickster, so our sighting was a warning to be cautious the rest of the day. It is rare to have coyotes stay so close, so he thought they were protecting a den close by or had just made a kill.

The horses were all beautiful and well-trained, and they were familiar with the narrow, steep trails through the ponderosa and piñon pines on Big and Little Tesuque trails.  Riding in the shade of the pines was a welcome relief from the intense summer sun.  The twists and turns were so frequent that it was rare to catch a glimpse of more than two other riders up ahead.

As we rode up a ridge, the view back across the Sangres was beautiful with a rambling line of bright green cottonwoods revealing the path of the stream beds. At the peak of our ride, Joaquin pointed out the sights from the 270-degree view from Colorado to the Jemez and beyond.

Bishops Lodge has many special event rides. Make reservations soon, as this popular event sells out quickly. Children 8 or older and at least 4-feet tall are welcome on the trail ride which makes this a wonderful family event.

One upcoming special event is the Cowboy BBQ dinner following a one-hour trail ride.  September 4th the ride leaves at 5 p.m.

http://www.bishopslodge.com/horseback-riding or call 505-819-4013.

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