Trail-Sharing Tips Horseback Riders Can Use

Remember these three keys to riding your horse on multiuse trails safely.
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Trail-Sharing Tips
When you meet people on the trail, remain calm and treat them like you would a friend. | Photo: Courtesy Kim McCarrel

You’re enjoying a beautiful sunny day on the trail with your horse. The trail is designated multiuse, so as you ride you’re likely to meet hikers, mountain bikers, and maybe even motorcycle or ATV users. Your enjoyment and safety depend on how well everyone shares the trail. 

You can’t control the actions of other trail users, of course. But your actions and demeanor can make the difference between a safe, friendly interaction and a nasty confrontation. And it’s easy to remember how to safely share the trail:  Just stop, speak, and smile

Stop!

Stopping is Job No. 1, for sure. If everyone stops when they meet another trail user, it takes the momentum out of the encounter. Your horse has a chance to settle and process the presence of the other trail users, and it gives you a chance to briefly chat with the other trail user about how  to best pass each other

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Written by:

Kim McCarrel is an avid trail rider and author whose guidebooks are “must-haves” for Pacific Northwest trail riders. She’s been mapping and writing about trails and horse camps since 2002. Her newest books are revised and updated editions of “Riding Central Oregon Horse Trails” and “Riding Southwest Washington Horse Trails.” McCarrel lives in Bend, Oregon, with her husband, Steve, two Portuguese water dogs, and a Tennessee Walking Horse mare named Tex.

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