The Owner is too busy with his new store adventure to be conducting the horse trail rides.
Everyone, PLEASE BE CAREFUL! Adults ride at their own risk, but children ride with the adults. Please remember, YES, YOU SIGN A WAIVER, BUT IT MOST LIKELY WILL NOT HOLD UP IN A COURT OF LAW, IF THERE IS NEGLIGENCE, AND THIS IS OBVIOUS NEGLIGENCE. Also, if you pay by credit card and do not get the service or product, REMEMBER TO DISPUTE IT WITH YOUR CREDIT CARD MERCHANT. YOU WILL GET A REFUND THROUGH THEM. Buyer Beware. I’ve been prompted to report this, after reading several disputes about this owner. I’ve written BECAUSE, I CARE ABOUT YOUR SAFETY AND THAT OF YOUR CHILDREN!
The story begins:
The Owner has a 17 yr. [continued below]....
..... old as the "trail guide," who just started a month ago. He has obviously not had ANY INSTRUCTION or TRAINING to do these rides. I was in a group of 10 customer riders. There was a Dad with his precious 4 yo daughter in the front of the saddle with him, his wife and their 6 yo son sitting in front of her, a young couple, two other women and my grandson and myself. One of the ladies and I were obviously, the only ones that knew how to ride, or knew horses, the other riders were first timers, other than my grandson, who was riding for the 2nd time in his life. The ride was an hour and a half late starting.
First off, we were just beginning to ride down the trail and there was a small lake. The guide paired off with the woman who knew how to ride, left the rest of us, and told us, “if we wanted to “SWIM” our horses across the lake, follow him! The 6 yr. old boy wanted his Mom to go through the lake. She told her husband they were going to follow the guide. By the way, for a group this size, there needs to be someone up front guiding, and someone behind, to assure safety for everyone! Before the Mom could turn her horse around, I asked her to please reconsider. A horse is a horse. It has a mind of it’s own. While walking through the lake, it could stop, start pawing at the water, and the unsuspecting rider who “KNOWS NOTHING ABOUT HORSES” could find themselves in the lake, when the horse goes down to ROLL! Can you imagine what could happen if the son did not know how to swim? Or the Mom’s foot was caught in the stirrup and her son was drowning. Listen people, this is reality. This could have happened. These horses had already been on one ride, and that water could have felt really good to them!
After going through the water, this young guide took off with the other lady that evidently knew how to ride and wanted to RUN her horse., not gallop, but dead run. None of the rest of us had any warning they were going to take off. Thank the Lord, only one other horse took off with them, (the feisty one) not the rest of the inexperienced riders, or the little children! Everyone in the group could have been seriously injured. The lady on the run away horse, screamed and screamed, but the other two riders did not stop and she fell off her horse at a dead run. She bounced several times. She was badly injured and the young man offered his horse for her to ride back to the barn. She should have NOT BEEN MOVED OR MADE TO STAND. She could have suffered paralyzing injuries. It took two men to lift her and get her to a 2 seat 4 wheeler type vehicle and she was slumped over in the seat, groaning in pain and agony. It scared everyone and my grandson wanted to go home.
The ride continued. I found myself leading the group. I could hear the Trail Guide’s voice behind me. We came to a fork in the trail. I yelled several times, “RIGHT OR LEFT”...yelling louder each time. Finally, when I evidently choose the wrong trail, the guide yelled “RIGHT.” He did apologize, he had taken a call on his cell phone! The lunch we were served, after we spent time quite some time looking for the loose horse and the hour and a half we waited for the ride to start, we were all starving, and it was not good and a big disappointment. Their cook did not show up that day, so they bought some BBQ brisket. The plates were already served on the table with a very small serving of brisket, a lettuce salad (?), about 8 "hot" grapes (as my grandson observed) and a sliver of cake. Very-very disappointing. There was a young man still eating when the group was rushed to start the ride back. He inhaled what was left on his plate.
Then the guide kept telling all of us, that "they do not pay him to do this"...and went on to say he only gets paid tips. I heard this 8 times, not counting the time I was told.
And NO, the rider that was seriously injured, did not ask to run her horse. The guide kept telling all of us that she asked him to let her run her horse too. We all told him, “no she didn't!” I doubt seriously she knew they were going to take off running anymore than the rest of us. It was unbelievable.
I was close to her when I heard her say she didn’t know much about horses (they have 4 legs and can run?) and saw her apprehension in riding this horse. The young man told her this horse was FEISTY and never should have allowed her to ride it. Where is the owner during all of this? He was busy with deliveries for his new store. I did not have my cell phone with me or I would have called an ambulance. I sincerely regret that I didn't ask to borrow one. That lady should have never been moved and I pray that she did not endure any life long injuries. She hit that ground hard and bounced several times. Her horse was at a dead run.
There was also a very low branch on the trail, that should have been cleared for safety. Instead, the guide made everyone do "the limbo" and lean way back in the saddle in order to get under this low branch. DANGEROUS...very dangerous, especially for non experienced riders...and those that had very young children in the saddle with them.
The guide was also complaining how his last ride, the whole group, none of them knew how to ride and he had to get off and lead three of their horses across the embankments we had to go down. We were fortunate that none of the horses wanted to jump the water and mud, so we did not have anyone fall off there.
On the way back to the barn, we were all led down a path right next to a hot wire electric fence for a long distance. This was very dangerous too. Any horse that may have touched that wire could have jumped out from underneath the rider.
The owner needs to re-access if he is going to do trail rides or operate a store...OR, HIRE 2 people with experience and PAY THEM, so that everyone else in the ride, that entrusts their safety to him, are indeed, in safe hands.
This was more than disappointing, it has been very upsetting and I purchased this through Groupon who needs to be aware of this unsafe activity. The whole day was a nightmare and I wish I had not taken my grandson on his 2nd horseback ride there.
Sorry, but I wish I had never purchased this Groupon. Everyone, PLEASE BE CAREFUL! Adults ride at their own risk, but children ride with the adults. Please remember, YES YOU SIGN A WAIVER, BUT IT MOST LIKELY WILL NOT HOLD UP IN A COURT OF LAW, IF THERE IS NEGLIGENCE, AND THIS IS OBVIOUS NEGLIGENCE. Also, if you pay by credit card and do not get the service or product, REMEMBER TO DISPUTE IT WITH YOUR CREDIT CARD MERCHANT. YOU WILL GET A REFUND THROUGH THEM. Buyer Beware. I’ve been prompted to report this, after reading several disputes about this owner. I’ve written BECAUSE I CARE ABOUT YOUR SAFETY AND THAT OF YOUR CHILDREN!