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Giddy Up: Horseback Riding Adventures for All Levels in Durango

Surrounded by the majestic San Juan Mountains and more than three million acres of protected wilderness, Glacier offers residents unbridled access to outdoor adventures every day of the year. And now that summer is just around the corner here in Southwest Colorado, we’re saddling up for one of our favorites: horseback riding. We’ve teamed up with Bears Ranch, located just 20 miles north of historic downtown Durango at the entrance to Haviland Lake, to offer incredible trail riding adventures for both kids and adults alike. Whether you’re a first-time rider or a seasoned pro, here’s everything you need to know about a Bears Ranch excursion this season. 

Mountain Views on Horseback

Bears Ranch (formerly Rapp Corral) is a true gem, nestled at the base of the majestic Hermosa cliffs with breathtaking alpine mountain views and stargazing that’ll make your jaw drop. Their summer trail rides begin right at the ranch entrance and wind through the connected Chris Park and Haviland Lake trail systems. Get ready for magnificent horseback riding through alpine meadows, aspen groves, and rolling hills with stunning mountain vistas at every turn. 

Family-Friendly Wilderness Fun 

The experienced wranglers are on a mission to help kids and families appreciate the great outdoors while learning about the rich history and legends of the Durango area. And for the buckaroos under seven, corral rides let them experience the thrill of saddling up, too. Little riders are led by a wrangler or parent around the corral area for about 10-15 minutes — the perfect way to get their first taste of horse riding and capture some adorable photos.

What to Know Before Saddling Up

  • There is a 230 lb weight limit per rider for safety
  • Reserve rides in advance as slots fill up, especially for short-notice bookings within 48 hours
  • Morning rides are recommended in summer when afternoon thunderstorms are more common

Horseback Riding Steeped in Tradition

Complementing top attractions like the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad and Purgatory Ski Resort, Bears Ranch continues a decades-old equestrian tradition in this scenic corridor along Highway 550, nicknamed the Million Dollar Highway. Anne Rapp pioneered Rapp Corral and the area’s riding trails back in the 1980s. Today’s owners proudly carry on her legacy, offering five-star sleigh rides in winter and miles of breathtaking summer trail rides at this gateway to the San Juan National Forest.

Interested in booking a trail ride this season? Email us at [email protected] and we’ll help arrange your summer excursion!