For my fiance’s birthday, I surprised him with a horseback trail ride in Front Royal, Virginia! There are a lot of stables in the DC area, but I decided to book with a stable in Front Royal so we could enjoy the mountain views without driving all the way to the Shenandoah area. I looked at several different places before deciding on Double H Stables. There are a lot of great options and each have pretty affordable prices for hour or 90 minute rides. I mainly chose Double H for the convenient location off the highway and I thought the trails would offer great views.
I was nervous that the horseback trail ride might be boring for my fiance because he is an experienced rider. However, I am a complete newbie so the ride had to be okay for different skill levels! I figured the views from this stable would make it fun enough even if we went slowly on the trail. When I booked over the phone, the staff were really helpful. They ask about the skill level of all riders to ensure they match you with the right horse and that the guide can help you to have a great experience.
Before you start on the horseback trail ride, the guide teaches you how to go left/right, go, and stop (very important!). They take you on a brief walk in a fenced in area. This helps to get the hang of riding and steering! The trail is a combination of uphill, downhill, and flat terrain. Sometimes we were in the woods, other times we were in the open with stunning views. It was extra gorgeous with the changing leaves!
You can book private rides or ride in a group with others. We rode with several other couples and everyone was very friendly. I was happy that I booked the hour and a half ride because one hour passed so quickly! We got to trot and even canter! When we got to canter, I legitimately felt like a little kid – I started laughing so hard I cried! It was so much fun for both us – even with our drastically different skill level. I can’t wait to book another horseback trail ride!