It’s Not Your Everyday Trail Ride

By:
Jenn Guidt, Equestrian Center Manager

What comes to mind when you think about the Cordillera Ranch Equestrian Center? Many residents enjoy the occasional trail rides on the winding trails inside the Equestrian Center or the sportier Nature Trails within the neighborhood. Another popular trail ride is to the Guadalupe River and Swede Creek Park. Frequent riders at the Equestrian Center are doing so much more than that! In this article we are showcasing two regular riders who demonstrate their passion for equestrianism!

Pam Thompson has been riding horses since she was 7 years old, including showing, rodeo, sheriff’s posse, polo, drill team, sorting and team penning, and anything possible with her trusted steeds. Now in retirement, Pam enjoys trail riding. It’s not just any trail for this high adventure lady! Pam is what we might call an “Extreme” Trail Rider. Her two horses, Seaweed and Rip, have been her mounts for the last 15 years. Seaweed was medically retired two years ago leaving Rip with the not-so-routine rides. Pam enjoys three-to-six-hour rides over challenging terrain. Local favorite trails are Sister Creek in Sisterdale, and Hill Country State Natural Area near Bandera. Both places boast multiple trails with varying degrees of difficulty. For Pam and Rip, the more challenging, the better! Recently Pam and Rip traveled to Big Bend State Park to ride those challenging trails for several hours on four consecutive days. The scenery was incredible and the riding formidable. Some of those trails aren’t much wider than the saddle! What’s the next challenging trail adventure for Pam and Rip? Look far and wide for narrow trails, water features and steep inclines.

Amelia Patterson, age 6, began lessons at the Equestrian Center in 2022 under the artful tutelage of head trainer, Meghan Moriarty. Horseback riding is her passion! Usually twice each week, Amelia comes to the Equestrian Center, first grooming and tacking up one of the lesson horses, then learning the different gaits and maneuvers to become an accomplished rider. Her favorite steed is “Miss Fancy Goodbar,” a retired show horse with countless ribbons and trophies to her name. In fact, Amelia graduated from walking and trotting to loping on Fancy four months ago! Once the lesson concludes, Amelia removes the tack, grooms the horse and may offer a few treats for a job well done. A veteran of two horse shows in the last six months, Amelia showed “Amigos for Certain,” aka “Honey,” in September in her very first show. They performed well in both the lead line and Unicorn costume contests. Last December, Amelia rode “Huntin Sum Lovin,” aka “Emma,” in her second horse show in College Station. In her pink sequins and big black cowgirl hat, Amelia grinned ear to ear, demonstrating her horsemanship to win her first belt buckle!

In addition to Pam and Amelia, Western and English riders of all ages and capabilities enjoy the Equestrian Center for cow cutting and sorting, barrel racing, ranch riding, arena drills and, yes, trail riding.  

Upcoming Events at the Equestrian Center 

March 4: Bunco

March 25: Fireside Social

April 1: Bunco

April 19: Fredericksburg trip for the day. Come enjoy the day shopping, going to trade days, dining and a little wine.

April 22: Sip and Paint. We will be painting a Highlander Cow with your personal touch added. Snacks and beverages included.

The Equestrian Center will be organizing multiple trips a year to different destinations

In May, we will be going into Texas’ historic Big Bend between Big Bend National Park and Big Bend State Park. We are hauling our horses to Lajitas Resort. It’s a 27,000-acre Texas resort, which is famous for its solitude, natural beauty and rugged desert environment. After checking in, we will be heading out for a short trail ride with a guide to learn the lay of the land. For this trip, you do not have to own your own horse; there are rentals available either through the Club or Lajitas.

From horseback, we will be able to take in Big Bend’s natural beauty as we ride for hours. For travel companions, there are plenty of other things to do if you choose not to ride. The resort features a world class 18-hole golf course called “Black Jack’s Crossing,” designed by PGA Hall of Fame golfer, Lanny Wadkins. They also offer shooting activities, ziplining, paddleboarding, mountain biking and spa packages. So, whether you enjoy horseback trails for hours, or golfing, there is something to enjoy for everyone. If you are interested, please contact Jenn Guidt. 

Jenn Guidt is the Equestrian Manger at The Clubs of Cordillera Ranch. She can be reached at jguidt@cordilleraranch.com and 803.840.0875.

New Online Registration for Outdoor Recreation & Transportation 

By Shane Reynolds, Outdoor Recreation Director & Outfitter

We are excited to announce that the transition from our current online registration provider to a new provider is nearing completion. The new, robust recreation software platform will be live for members in early March with the current platform sunsetting on March 10. If you had an active account on our current Square registration system, members will need to establish a new registration profile on our new system when we launch it. We are continuously working to improve the member experience at the Club and this new online registration system has been a work-in-progress based on member feedback. Programs and activities that will be available for registration include: 

• Luxury limo van rentals

• Drop off and pick up from the San Antonio and Austin airports

• Trail rides and clinics at the Equestrian Center

• Horse Camps 

• Outdoor Adventure Camp

• Kayaking and toobing trips, and equipment rental

• Gun Club reservations, including shotgun range, rifle range    and handgun range

• Gun Club classes and workshops

• Camping equipment rental and campsite reservations

• Disc golf equipment rentals

• Fishing and hunting trips

• CStar vacation trips

Shane Reynolds is the Outdoor Recreation Director & Outfitter at The Clubs of Cordillera Ranch. He can be reached at outfitter@cordilleraranch.com and 210.616.6051, or at the Cordillera Ranch Outfitter Center at 830.336.4823.

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