Horseback riding is fun for the whole family, and there’s no better place to give it a try than in the beautiful Smokies! With scenic views and expert guides, you’re in for the ride of a lifetime! To help you make the most of your experience, here are 5 things to know about horseback riding in Gatlinburg TN.
1. Riding Stables in Gatlinburg
There are 2 main stables where you can go horseback riding in Gatlinburg TN. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced equestrian, Smoky Mountain Riding Stables has something for you! Their guides will take you through some of the most beautiful trails in the national park. You might even get to see some Smoky Mountain wildlife along the way! Sugarland Riding Stables is another favorite among locals and visitors alike. The horses are very well trained, and the trails they follow are well maintained.
2. How to Dress
You don’t have to purchase any kind of expensive equestrian attire for your ride if you don’t have it. Of course, if you do own such clothing, it’s a great idea to wear it! Otherwise, wearing a pair of pants is a smart idea, along with close-toed shoes. You should avoid wearing scarves, purses or any other accessories that may get caught in your equipment or snagged on tree branches along the way.
3. When to Greet Your New Pal
Your horse is a living, breathing creature with the ability to become nervous at unfamiliar things. So, it’s important for you to say hello before you begin your ride. The best approach to doing this is to walk up to your horse from the front and speak in a soft, even voice. You should try to avoid any sudden movements that could spook your new pal, and maybe even extend the back of your hand so that they can get a whiff of your scent.
4. Correct Riding Form
In order to get the most that you can out of your riding experience, you should practice the proper form. The terrain in the Smokies is not always even, so having good form will help you to feel more comfortable and secure. The best way to maintain control of your horse is to sit up straight with your shoulders squared. You should hold the reins gently in both of your hands with your arms at 90-degree angles.
5. How to Mount and Unmount
Both you and your horse will feel more at ease if you know how to mount and unmount with confidence. You can always use a mounting block to make getting on your horse easier. As you’re standing on the block, you should put your left foot in the stirrup, and then proceed to step up and swing your right leg around to the other side of your horse. When you’re done riding, make sure that your horse is standing still, and remove your feet from the stirrups. Once you’ve done this, you can lean forward, swing your right leg around, and gently jump off.
Now that you know a little more about what to do when you go horseback riding in Gatlinburg TN, it’s time to start planning your trip! Be sure to also check out all of the other fun and exciting Gatlinburg attractions to make your getaway one to remember.