YLPEC Trail Trials

The YLP Equestrian Center decided that in 2019 we want to host additional events, not just horse shows. On Sunday, Jan. 27, 2019, we are hosting Trail Trials. It will begin at 10 a.m. and will end when everyone who signed up has had an opportunity to participate.

The cost is $25 for the day and there will be 15 obstacles and different participation levels (novice and open).

For those of you who may not be familiar with Trail Trials, it is essentially an obstacle course on horseback.  Many of the obstacles essentially replicate something you may encounter on a trail ride.  For instance, one of the obstacles may have you ask your horse to step over poles. Out on the trail, you may have to step over tree branches or large rocks.  Some of the advanced Trail Trial courses may have you jump over a small jump. On a trail ride you may come across a tree that has fallen in the path of the trail with no way around it, so if your horse is familiar with taking a small jump then you are prepared for that situation.
Even if you don’t enjoy trail riding, Trail Trials are a great way to work on agility and teamwork with your horse.  To correctly maneuver around the obstacles on horseback, your horse has to trust you and to listen to you. You may be asked to back through barrels or to turn in tight quarters.  Having these skills and that level of connection with your horse can only benefit the horse and rider team.
We encourage everyone to come check it out even if you don’t have a horse to participate with. Please see our flyer for more information.

Balancing horses & life

When Your Hobby Becomes Work: How to Balance Life and Horses
I think any adult who has horses has felt this way at one time or another.  We love our horses but sometimes busy schedules can make our barn time feel like work.  The holidays in particular can be a busy and stressful time.  I found this great blog from SmartPak’s website with some great tips on how to make time for and enjoy our horses even when it isn’t easy.

The importance of trainers

I read this blog and knew I had to share it with you.  When it comes to horses, in my opinion no truer words have ever been spoken.  Finding the right trainer makes all the difference.  No matter what discipline you ride or what kind of horse you have, none of us are experts and as I have previously shared, we all can benefit from taking lessons.
I am fortunate enough to have a wonderful trainer who knows just how far to push my horse and I to help both of us be better and better together.

What is Working Equitation?

Working Equitation is a fairly new equestrian event that I have had the opportunity to watch first hand. It is something that I personally want to get in to with my horse and when I talk about it, most other equestrians haven’t heard of it. If you are interested in knowing more about Working Equitation check out this article from dressage today.com

Say “equitation,” and many riders think of a hunter-jumper flat or dressage-seat class, but far too few are aware of the exciting equine sport of working equitation (WE). For an individual horse and rider, this three-phased competition begins with the Dressage Phase—a test of classic dressage skills and movements, then continues to Ease of Handling Phase, which demonstrates their partnership by navigating an obstacle course, and finally, the Speed Phase, which measures their gusto by redoing part of the course at speed. Like dressage, there are many levels from Introductory through Advanced. Although WE has long been an international competition, it is a young, wide-open sport in the United States. 

Holiday Open House

This last Sunday, the Equestrian Center had our second annual Holiday Open House.  This year we included a “play day” event. We were able to get everyone involved by having some of the events on foot as well as on horseback.

Thanks to our generous community, we received some wonderful raffle prizes. The raffle raised $312 that we are donating to help fire victims from Paradise, CA.
Dave Rhodes, our horse show manager, presented the buckles to the winners who were present.
The return of our horse shows was so wonderful to see this year, we have some exciting plans for next year! The YLPEC has some wonderful boarders who always pitch in to make our events possible and we owe a huge thank you to Karen Kroske, Dave Rhodes and Sandy Unruh as well as our local horse community for all of the hard work and support.

Learning to ride

How long does it take?

A few months ago I went with some friends to take a lesson on my horse with their instructor. I believe that with most things, but especially horses, you can never stop learning.

I jumped at the opportunity for myself and my young horse to take a lesson with a new instructor to give us both some new tools to be a better team. When we got back to the Equestrian Center one of our young boarders asked me where I had been. When I told her I was having a riding lesson, she said, “But you’re a grownup, why are you still taking lessons?”

I explained that I have a young horse and she has a lot to learn but that I also want to always keep learning and becoming a better rider. She seemed a little disappointed, and I remember when I was a young rider thinking that I couldn’t wait until I grew up and knew everything about horses.

I quickly realized that that it takes a lot of time and effort to be a great rider. I found this great blog post that talks about how long it takes to learn to ride a horse and thought it would be a great one to share with you.


It’s a question that most riding instructors have had to answer. There’s a simple, one size fits all answer, but it brings to mind a plethora of questions. And answering a question with a question is purely annoying to the questioner.

The basic answer is, “Well, it depends on what you want to do.” And this is true….GO TO THE STORY