Hit the trail and marvel at the mountain scenery when you take a horseback riding tour in the Vail Valley. Beginners and experienced riders alike are sure to be pleased when they choose from tours ranging from 1 hour to half a day. Riders can take a leisurely stroll while imagining they are a Colorado cowboy from back in the day or settle on being a modern day explorer. Views include multiple mountain ranges, aspen forests, meadows, rivers and more.
DETAILS & FAQs
How do I reserve a tour?
Choose an outfitter from the list below and follow the link to reserve. Most stables allow online booking but you can also call. If you need help, submit a contact form and a Vail Butler concierge will gladly assist.
Which outfitter and location is the best?
Guests have a number of horseback riding outfitters to choose from and each gives a unique experience. The best choice for you and your group depends on the type of trip and terrain you want to experience.
This outfitter prides itself on providing a unique ride every time. Rides are more freeform and guides don’t stick to a single trail or require guests to ride “nose to tail”. Sage has a private mountain in Wolcott with views of Castle Peak and the Vail Valley. Tours may ride through streams, aspen groves, and fields of juniper.
For an experience reminiscent of the Old West when Colorado first came to be, hit the trail with 4 Eagle Stables at 4 Eagle Ranch. Their property is located on a ranch in Wolcott complete with a model western town kids will love plus views of the Sawatch Range, Castle Peak, and Red and White Mountain.
For rides suitable for true beginners and younger children, try Bearcat Stables. Rides take place on the Bearden homestead and mainly stick to old wagon roads traversing through wildflower meadows and aspen groves. More advanced rides enjoy views of New York Mountain and the Gore Range.
The only stable permitted by the National Forest Service to operate on Beaver Creek Mountain is Beaver Creek Stables. They have the privilege of offering rides to Beaver Lake, Beano’s Cabin, and beautiful trails visitors would otherwise have to trek by foot.
Like its counterpart, Vail Stables is the only stable with permits to operate on the National Forest land where Vail Mountain is located. Riders are treated to incredible Vail Valley views and a quirky group of guides.
Since each trip has a different starting point, travel time from your accommodation varies from 10 minutes to 40 minutes. Be sure to check trip information when reserving.
Most tours are 1 or 2 hours long but longer rides are offered for more advanced riders.
Most tours require guests to drive their own vehicle or be dropped off and meet at the stable. If your tour does not include transportation, consider reserving private transportation.
Expect to pay $80-149 per adult, depending on the trip duration and outfitter you choose.
Kids 7 and older are welcome on most tours. Pony rides are available for kids under 7 years old. Check with the individual stable to learn about their policy.
Horses can carry up to 220-260 pounds comfortably. Check with the outfitter to learn more about their policy.
What to Wear and Bring
Wear long pants, closed toe shoes, sunscreen, sunglasses. We recommend dressing in layers as mountain weather can be unpredictable, even in the summer.
What is provided?
A helmet, which is sometimes optional for adults
When can you ride?
Generally, May-October, weather permitting.
What if there is bad weather?
Tours may be canceled if lightning is present or weather conditions are otherwise deemed unsafe. If that is the case, your tour operator will contact you. It may be possible to reschedule for an alternate day but additional fees may apply.
What if I have no horseback riding experience?
Beginner trips are offered by each outfitter. If you’ve never ridden a horse before, start out with a 1 hour ride. Long rides require more stamina and strength in muscles you may not use often, even if you are in great shape!