Horseback Riding in North Carolina


I hadn’t really been horseback riding for a while, maybe 15 years or more, but I had been wanting to try it again. What better place than in the rolling hills of North Carolina, outside of Asheville, at Sandy Bottom Trail Rides.

This family owned business is just north of Asheville, North Carolina, near Marshall. They offer 1 hour, 2 hour, 3 hour and 4 hour scenic trail rides, the longest ones stopping at their 200 year old Little Pine Garnet Gem Mine where you can explore the mine and keep any gems you may find.

We took the one hour ride, since we hadn’t been on horses in a long time. I wasn’t sure how much we could endure. Horseback riding can be very tiring and sometimes painful if you haven’t done it a lot.

Based on your horsemanship, or lack of it, they pair you with a horse that matches your abilities. Our horses were Lady and Ginger, both very calm. Our guide was named Hank and there were 5 people in our group.

Some online reviews of Sandy Bottom complained that on the longer rides you rode for the same amount of time as the shorter rides and spent more time at the Gem Mine, not really riding for 3 or 4 hours. So, if you’re looking for more “horse time” then maybe Sandy Bottom isn’t right for you.

One hour was plenty of time for me. I was happy with the peaceful ride through the countryside. The landscape was beautiful and we had wonderful weather that day, just perfect.

I also like the fact that Sandy Bottom is very flexible and accommodating for all skill levels and age ranges. You don’t have to feel intimidated or afraid of the animals.

If you prefer not to ride on horseback, but would still like to enjoy the panoramic views, you can take a horse-drawn buggy or wagon ride.

2012 per person pricing is as follows:

Horseback rides:
1 hour: $40
2 hour: $70
3 hour: $90
However, Sandy Bottom is running a special for this spring/summer with $5 off the above rates.

Buggy/wagon rides:
1 hour: $40
2 hour: $70
3 hour: $90

Dates of Visit:  May 2008

If you enjoyed this post, you might like my other blog:

Categories: North Carolina, Play | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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One thought on “Horseback Riding in North Carolina

  1. I’m just a guy with a limerick reply…

    There once was a girl from the city,
    Who horse rode where it was quite pretty;
    The mountains were high,
    There were clouds in the sky,
    The whole thing was really quite giddy.

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